NNEK15004U Nutrition and Physical Activity for the Improvement of Health in the Aged

Volume 2019/2020

MSc Programme in Human Nutrition


The focus of this course will be on the increased importance of nutrition and physical activity for health, disease prevention and quality of life in the aging population. The course also includes age-related physiological and metabolic changes and age related life style diseases as well as a basic introduction to the field of gerontology, including the normal aging process, the demographic development, and concepts of healthy/successful/active aging.

Learning Outcome

The main objectives of the course are to provide the students with knowledge regarding age related physiological changes and how these may be affected by diet and physical activity to improve health and life quality. Furthermore, students will aquire knowledge on effective individualised strategies and interventions which may improve health and life quality in an aging population.

After completion of the course students should be able to:



  • Describe demography of aging and the aging process
  • Describe the physiological changes that occur with age
  • Describe the dietary intake and physical activity of older adults and define physiological, psychosocial and mental factors that affect nutritional intake and the level of physical activity
  • Explain interactions between dietary intake, physical activity and physiological, psycosocial and mental changes
  • Describe diseases related to poor nutrient and physical inactivity in the aged population



  • Discuss interventions which provide food and/or nutrition and/or physical activity for older adults, including restricting and promoting factors among the older adults
  • Discuss the  recommendations for nutrition and physical activity for older adults, including supplements, and specially-target foods/optimised foods for (specific groups of) older adults
  • Demonstrate ability to perform assessment of nutritional status and physical capacity and health status in the elderly



  • Independently be able to perform evidence based evaluation of effect of nutritional and physical activity interventions in selected diseases of the elderly
  • Identify gaps in existing knowledge in the field of aging, nutrition and physical activity and make suggestions for future studies
  • Make dietary and physical activity recommendations to the elderly based on evaluation of scientific evidence, as well as psycosocial, mental and physical abilities

Will be announced at study start at Absalon.

Basic knowledge about human physiology and nutrition physiology.

Academic qualifications equivalent to a BSc degree is recommended.
Lectures with exemplification and theoretical exercises.
  • Category
  • Hours
  • Lectures
  • 24
  • Preparation
  • 80
  • Study Groups
  • 75
  • Theory exercises
  • 27
  • Total
  • 206
Peer feedback (Students give each other feedback)

Oral feedback from peers and teachers during the course when groups of students present different research papers


7,5 ECTS
Type of assessment
Oral examination, 20 minutes
10 min presentation of a research paper + 10 min examination. The research papers is made available 24 h prior to the examination
All aids allowed
Marking scale
7-point grading scale
Censorship form
No external censorship
Internal grading. More assessors.

The re-exam will be like the ordinary exam.

Criteria for exam assesment

See learning outcome.