NNEK20001U Nutrition and Physical Activity for Healthy Ageing

Volume 2020/2021

MSc Programme in Human Nutrition


The focus of this course will be on the role of nutrition and physical activity for health, disease prevention and quality of life in the ageing 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. Furthermore, students will aquire knowledge on effective strategies and interventions to improve health and quality of life in an ageing 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 ageing
  • Describe the dietary patterns 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 patterns physical activity and physiological, psycosocial and cognitive changes
  • Describe diseases related to poor nutrient and physical inactivity in the older 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 assessment of the effects of nutritional and physical activity interventions in older adults
  • Identify gaps in existing knowledge in the field of ageing in relation to nutrition and physical activity and make suggestions for future studies
  • Make evidence-based recommendations for older adults on diet and physical activity taking into consideration physical, cognitive, and social 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, practical and theoretical exercises, group work.
  • Category
  • Hours
  • Lectures
  • 24
  • Preparation
  • 80
  • Theory exercises
  • 27
  • Study Groups
  • 75
  • Total
  • 206
Peer feedback (Students give each other feedback)

Oral feedback from peers and teachers during the course.


7,5 ECTS
Type of assessment
Oral examination, 30 minutes
Exam preparation: the students draw a scientific paper by lottery 24 hours prior to the examination and prepare for the examination individually or together with a follow student.

Oral exam: students are examined individually, giving a 10 minute presentation of the allotted paper, followed by 10-15 minutes for questions/discussion in relation to the paper and to the curriculum overall. The examination will take no more than 30 minutes in total, including grading.
All aids allowed
Marking scale
7-point grading scale
Censorship form
No external censorship
Internal grading. Two assessors.

The re-exam will be like the ordinary exam.

Criteria for exam assesment

See learning outcome.