The study of nutrition is interesting and rewarding. Nutrition Across the Life Span is directed to students and health care professionals who require more in-depth knowledge of nutritional needs for their work with individuals from embryo to old age. Physiologic and biochemical principles and results of current research are used to build a foundation for exploration of nutrition across the stages of growth and development, maturation, and aging. These serve as the basis for consideration of the social, economic, physiologic, and life style factors that influence nutrition status, food choices, and specific life stage concerns. Particular attention is paid to using the principles of nutrition in planning and implementing recommendations for dietary change.
The overall organization of the book is presented in the Table of Contents. Part I, Foundations, provides a basic introduction to nutrition principles and applications across the life span. Chapter 1 reviews energy and nutrient needs and includes important tools such as dietary standards, food guidelines, dietary goals, nutrition labeling, and legislation for dietary supplements. Chapter 2 introduces the nutrition assessment skills used in later chapters that address the stages of growth, reproduction, and maturation. The concept of "intervention" or the use of nutrition counseling to change dietary habits and health behaviors is explored in Chapter 3.
Part II, Growth and Development, contains four chapters that cover the life span from birth through adolescence. A chapter of the nutrition needs and care of low-birth-weight and preterm infants has been included in this section.
Part III, Reproduction, addresses the nutrition needs and unique concerns of pregnancy, postpartum mothers, lactation, and breast-feeding. The chapter on high-risk pregnancy focuses on the nutrition-related factors that increase the risk of a poor pregnancy outcome.
The two chapters in Part IV, The Adult Years, cover the period from maturation to old age. This part emphasizes meeting nutrition needs and establishing dietary intakes that promote optimum health.
The chapters in Part V, Special Concerns Across the Life Span, address nutrition issues associated with eating disturbances, physical activity, and developmental delays and disabilities. These chapters address specific issues that influence nutrition status and food-related behaviors across more than one stage of the life span.
Each chapter begins with an outline of topics and ends with a list of Concepts to Remember. Within the chapters, each major section is preceded by a list of review questions. The outline and the questions give students an idea of the material to be covered in the chapter, and together with the Concepts to Remember they provide a useful review tool.
Chapters in Parts II through V are introduced with vignettes that illustrate the importance of nutrition and provide a better perspective for the reader. In each chapter, key terms, essential to understanding the content, appear