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7: Food Drivers That Impact Your Nutrition

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    This chapter contains additional topics you may find interesting. The topics are not required for this class.

    • 7.1: Foodborne Illness and Food Safety
      Foodborne illness is caused by pathogens, such as bacteria and viruses, toxins, such as those produced by molds and poisonous mushrooms, and chemical contaminants, such as pesticide residues and pollutants. A number of government agencies work to regulate food, manage outbreaks, and inform the public about foodborne illness and food safety. Consumers also should take measures to protect their health, including following the rules for four key steps: clean, separate, cook, and chill.
    • 7.2: The Politics of Food
      Food politics reflect changing perspectives and policies in the areas of production, distribution, marketing, regulation, and consumption. Over the years, there have been a number of controversies and disputes over food, including concerns about additives and GM foods, the push for sustainable agriculture, and the need to alleviate hunger. In the United States, a massive piece of legislation known as the Farm Bill determines the agricultural and food policy of the federal government.
    • 7.3: The Food Industry
      The food industry encompasses all aspects of food production: manufacturing, distribution, marketing, retail, regulation, and consumption. Food preservation and processing have a number of benefits including improving the quality of food products, making them more shelf-stable, and aiding the marketing and advertising of food. There are more than three hundred additives used during food processing today.
    • 7.4: Food Cost and Inflation
      Food prices are rising in the United States and around the world, which has greatly affected both agricultural producers and consumers. A number of factors have contributed to rising costs, including population booms, natural disasters, and the production of biofuels, among others. Economic experts have declared that the era of cheap food, which began after World War II, has ended due to rising population rates and decreased agricultural production worldwide.
    • 7.5: Sustainability
      Some consumers are choosing to make smarter nutritional choices, eat healthier foods, and enjoy fresh, locally grown products. They read the labels on products in their local stores, make more home-cooked meals using whole-food ingredients, and pay attention to the decisions that legislators and other officials make regarding food production and consumption. Will you be one of them? How can you adjust your dietary choices to benefit not only your body and mind but also help sustain the planet?
    • 7.6: A Fresh Perspective- Sustainable Food Systems
      Sustainability promotes the development of conditions under which people and nature can interact harmoniously. It is based upon the principle that everything needed for human survival depends upon the natural environment. A sustainable food system includes not only the food and those who consume the food, but also those who produce food (such as farmers and fishermen), and process, package, distribute, and regulate food.
    • 7.7: Start Your Sustainable Future Today
      Living a sustainable lifestyle can help you to work toward achieving optimal health. There are a number of steps you can take to promote sustainable practices, such as buying locally grown food, eating a plant-based diet, and becoming aware of food and nutrition issues in your community. The Transtheoretical Model of Behavioral Change outlines the different stages of the process of change, and provides tools and techniques to enable major changes.
    • 7.8: The Issue of Food Security
      Nearly one billion people suffer the effects of constant hunger. There are two types of malnutrition. The first is macronutrient deficiency and relates to the lack of adequate protein, which is required for cell growth, maintenance, and repair. The second type of malnutrition is micronutrient deficiency and relates to inadequate vitamin and mineral intake.
    • 7.9: Diets around the World
      Many people around the world have access to a wide variety of food and can prepare it any way they choose. However, cuisine remains strongly influenced by location, culture, tradition, and economics. People from all cultures and all walks of life should consider the choices they make regarding food, and how those decisions affect not only their bodies, but also the world.
    • 7.10: Why Make Dietary Changes?
      Given the consequences of poor dietary choices and lifestyle habits, it is worthwhile to assess your current food and activity profile to determine areas for improvement. It is important to remember that there are no quick fixes, but with dedication, hard work, and persistence, much can be accomplished. Of course, giving up what we once found enjoyable may not be the easiest task. It can be very hard to develop new thinking patterns that will translate into better lifestyle choices.
    • 7.11: Nutrition and Your Health
      More consumers are weighing nutritional considerations as they choose which foods to purchase and prepare for their families. Studies have shown that family meals and home-cooked food not only benefit a person’s health, but also their overall well-being. Family meals lead to the consumption of healthy food, tighter familial bonds, improved communication, and the teaching of table manners to young children. Diet plays a key role in the prevention and management of many chronic conditions.
    • 7.12: Diet Trends and Health
      Attitudes toward food change over time, so it is important to ground dietary choices in fact, not fashion. Popular, evidence-based diets, such as the Mediterranean diet, the DASH diet, vegetarianism, and the gluten-free diet offer different approaches to promoting health, and each has its own benefits and risks. It is important to weigh the pros and cons of dietary supplementation. There are risks of overdosing and risks of contraindications with certain medications.
    • 7.13: Threats to Health
      Chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure, cancer, and diabetes are major public health threats, and major causes of mortality. Knowing the modifiable risk factors (such as diet, level of physical activity, and cigarette smoking) for certain diseases can help you to adapt your lifestyle to protect them. By following a healthy diet, becoming active, and making other sound lifestyle choices, individuals can reduce their risk of developing chronic diseases.
    • 7.14: Careers in Nutrition
      There are many paths that one can take to become a professional in the field of nutrition, including working as a nutritionist or becoming a registered dietitian. Some confuse the terms "dietitian" and "nutritionist," and this tends to be erroneous. A nutritionist is a person who advises on matters of food and nutrition impacts on health. In contrast, A dietitian is an expert in the relationship between human nutrition and the regulation of diet; a dietitian alters their patient's nutrition base

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