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Week 4: Healthy Diet, Healthy Life

April 4, 2021
Brenda I. Belcher

Week 4: Healthy Diet, Healthy Life

In 2010, United States First Lady Michelle Obama launched the “Let’s Move!” campaign to fight childhood obesity across the country. The U.S. was spending $150 billion a year treating preventable, obesity-related diseases. The situation is an extreme example of how lack of exercise and nutrition can lead to an unhealthy nation. It’s a global problem; around the world, obesity rates are on the rise. Many are questioning portion sizes, food sources, and a lack of movement.

On the opposite side of the weight war is what is known as the French Paradox. The French consume rich cheeses, cream, and wine, but manage to stay healthy. The secret seems to be shared by healthy nations like Japan and the Netherlands. They attribute their good health to two factors: a diet filled with whole grains, fruits, and vegetables, and choosing walking and bicycling for daily travel needs.

This week, you will learn about the benefits of maintaining a healthy weight and the negative effects of both obesity and being underweight. You will learn how to create a healthy movement and exercise plan for all phases of life. You will also determine nutritional needs for individuals with restricted diets and different activity levels.

Learning Objectives

Students will:
  • Evaluate specific foods to enable individuals to meet their recommended daily allowances
  • Recommend a nutritional and exercise plan for a person with alternative dietary needs
  • Analyze the roles of enzymes and lactose in digestion
  • Explore how enzymes help the body break down food into soluble macronutrients by completing a virtual laboratory experience
  • Demonstrate knowledge of the components of overall health
  • Support how awareness of one’s dietary choices can result in improved eating habits*

*This Learning Objective is explored in Week 4 and will be completed in Week 5.

Learning Resources

Required Readings

Thompson, J., & Manore, M. (2015). Nutrition for life (4th ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Benjamin Cummings.

  • Chapter 9, “Achieving and Maintaining a Healthful Body Weight” (pp. 250–292)This chapter focuses on scientific ways to determine a healthy body weight, weight change plans, and disordered eating patterns.
  • Chapter 10, “Nutrition and Physical Activity: Keys to Good Health” (pp. 293–325)In this chapter, the authors outline the benefits of physical activity, how to develop a fitness plan, and the biochemical effects of exercise on the body.
  • Review Chapter 5, “Proteins: Crucial Components of All Body Tissues” (pp. 129–154), which you should have initially read in Week 2.

Required Media

Laureate Education (Producer). (2016). Virtual biology lab [Interactive media]. Baltimore, MD: Author.

Optional Resources

American Diabetes Association. (2016). Create your plate. Retrieved from http://www.diabetes.org/food-and-fitness/food/planning-meals/create-your-plate/Harvard School of Public Health. (n.d.-a). Healthy eating plate & healthy eating pyramid. The Nutrition Source. Retrieved from https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/healthy-eating-plate/Harvard School of Public Health. (n.d.-b). Healthy weight. The Nutrition Source. Retrieved from http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/healthy-weight/Harvard School of Public Health. (n.d.-c). Staying active. The Nutrition Source. Retrieved from http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/staying-active/Let’s Move! (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.letsmove.gov/Mayo Clinic. (n.d.). Vegetarian diet pyramid. Retrieved from http://www.mayoclinic.org/vegetarian-diet-pyramid/img-20008075

Painter, J., Rah, J.-H., & Lee, Y-K. (2002). Comparison of international food guide pictorial representations. Journal of the American Dietetic Association, 102(4), 483–489.

Discussion: Alternative Dietary Considerations

People come in all shapes, sizes, and beliefs. Sometimes diet and exercise recommendations are not appropriate for certain individuals because they are on restrictive diets or have health issues that restrict exercise. Furthermore, individuals have different energy requirements based on their daily activities, jobs, et cetera. Some individuals meet daily activity levels for optimal health while others struggle to be regularly active.

To prepare for this Discussion:

  • Review Chapters 9 and 10 in your course text.
  • Think about dietary constraints of people who are lactose intolerant, have celiac disease, do not eat animal proteins, are diabetic, or have hypertension.
  • Consider how these individuals can still eat healthy, well-rounded diets despite their dietary constraints. Think about how people can sustain healthy energy levels, given their restricted diets.

With these thoughts in mind:

By Day 3

Post a 3- to 4-paragraph summary recommending a nutritional plan for an individual who requires an alternative diet. Select an issue above or identify another issue related to dietary restrictions or health issues. In your summary, be sure to address the following:

  • Describe the RDAs for proteins, carbohydrates, and fats, as well as any other important vitamins and minerals you feel should be highlighted for an individual with your selected dietary restrictions or requirements.
  • Suggest specific foods and serving sizes that will help the individual meet their RDAs while considering their dietary or health issues.
  • Recommend 2–3 substitutions the individual should make in regard to their dietary restrictions or health issue. Describe why they are healthy substitutions. For example, you might suggest kidney beans instead of chicken for a vegetarian because kidney beans have comparable protein levels for equal weight.
  • Suggest a daily or weekly activity plan to help the individual meet activity needs while still being healthy and balanced.

Be sure to support your ideas by connecting them to the week’s Learning Resources, or something you have read, heard, seen, or experienced. Use at least two APA-formatted references for full credit.

Read a selection of your colleagues’ postings.

By Day 5

Respond to at least two of your colleagues’ postings in one or more of the following ways:

  • At least one response must be on the topic in which you did not initially post.
  • Ask a probing question.
  • Share an insight from having read your colleague’s posting.
  • Offer and support an opinion.
  • Validate an idea with your own experience.
  • Make a suggestion.
  • Expand on your colleague’s posting.

Return to this Discussion in a few days to read the responses to your initial posting. Note what you have learned and/or any insights you have gained as a result of the comments your colleagues made.

Submission and Grading Information

Grading Criteria

To access your rubric:Week 4 Assignment Rubric

Submit Your Assignment by Day 7

To submit your Assignment:Week 4 Assignment

Assignment: Virtual Lab: Enzymes and Lactose Intolerance

Enzymes are proteins that make all the chemical reactions associated with metabolism possible. Most enzymes are responsible for only one particular chemical reaction. Lactase is an enzyme whose job is to digest lactose, a carbohydrate found in milk. For people who do not produce enough of the enzyme lactase, eating dairy products causes digestive discomforts such as gas, bloating, cramping, and even diarrhea.

In this Virtual Lab, you will observe how lactase works by testing the dietary supplement Lactaid and how it breaks down lactose in the body.

To prepare for this Assignment:

  • Review Chapter 5 of your Course Text, Nutrition for Life, which was the required reading for Week 2.
  • Think about the digestion of organic groups in foods and the role of enzymes in chemical reactions. Specifically, consider the job lactose plays in digestion.
  • Consider the conditions that an enzyme requires for optimum performance.

For this Assignment, you will complete an interactive virtual lab experience to discover how enzymes help the body break down food into usable macronutrients. Click on the link to access and complete the lab activity.

Click on this link to access and complete the lab activity: https://mym.cdn.laureate-media.com/2dett4d/Walden/BIOL/2320/CH/mm/bio-lab/index.html#/?_k=owkw9f

By Day 7

Complete your virtual lab. Once you have completed the lab, be sure to print out your Completion Certificate as a PDF, and submit it to your instructor on or before Day 7. Once your instructor receives your Completion Certificate, he or she will enter a grade of “Complete” in the gradebook.

Questions about this Assignment? Post them in the Contact the Instructor area. That way, everyone in the class will see, and benefit from, the Instructor’s response.

Submission and Grading Information

To submit your completed Assignment for review and grading, do the following:

  • Please save your Assignment using the naming convention “WK4Assgn+last name+first initial.(extension)” as the name.
  • Click the Week 4 Assignment link.
  • Next, from the Attach File area, click on the Browse My Computer button. Find the document you saved as “WK4Assgn+last name+first initial.(extension)” and click Open.
  • If applicable: From the Plagiarism Tools area, click the checkbox for I agree to submit my paper(s) to the Global Reference Database.
  • Click on the Submit button to complete your submission.
Check Your Assignment Draft for Authenticity

To check your Assignment draft for authenticity:Submit your Week 4 Assignment draft and review the originality report.

Submit Your Assignment by Day 7

To submit your Assignment:Week 4 Assignment


This 20-question, multiple-choice and fill-in-the-blank quiz will assess how well you can apply the information in this week’s assigned readings.

About the quiz:

  • The quiz has a 2-hour time limit.
  • You may take the quiz as many times as you need in order to achieve a passing score.
  • If you encounter technical difficulties during the quiz or if you have questions about how a quiz works in your online classroom, contact the Student Support Team for more information. (The team’s contact information is in the Student Support area.)

By Day 7

Complete this week’s quiz.

Submission and Grading Information

Submit Your Quiz by Day 7

To submit your Quiz:Week 4 Quiz


Final Project Milestone: Continue Working on Your Final Project

Now that you have submitted Steps 1–3, focus your attention on the final step of your project—Step 4. As always, contact your Instructor if you have any questions or concerns about using MyDietAnalysis. Please note: Your Final Project is due next week (Week 5) by Day 7.

Week in Review

This week, you evaluated specific foods and daily allowances. You also recommended a nutritional and exercise plan for a person with alternative dietary needs. In addition, you analyzed the role of enzymes and lactose in digestion and examined how enzymes help the body break down food into soluble macronutrients.

Next week, you will examine lifecycle nutrition and how nutritional requirements change at different stages of life.

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