Course: Critical Analysis of Popular Diets and Dietary Supplements

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Homework Assigments

» Diet or Supplement Analysis

After you've chosen the diet you would like to study and analyze, you will prepare a 2-phase presentation of that diet. For Phase 1 you will need to prepare an overview of the diet, including the rationale behind the regimen, description of the diet and literature review of any studies published about this particular diet or similar diets. You will also need to evaluate the diet and the literature that exists on it. What are its pros and cons? What sorts of studies are missing? What studies would you design to evaluate the effectiveness of this diet? What variables would you include? This will be presented in front of the class, and you will be asked questions about your chosen diet.

If you choose a supplement instead of a diet, the first part of the presentation will be similar. Outline the rationale of why this particular supplement is used for weight loss, its active ingredients and mode of action.

For phase two, you will choose seven daily menus (including breakfast, lucnh, dinner, and snacks) based on your diet of choice and you will conduct a nutrient analysis of the diet to come up with the diet's nutritional profile. If you choose to work on a supplement you will base your nutrient analysis on seven 24-hour recalls of your own diet or somebody else's diet while using that particular supplement. You will report to the class, on the macronutrient and micronutrient make-up of the diet to answer the following questions:

  • What are the main sources of energy in this diet?
  • What is the breakdown of macronutrient energy sources (% carbohydrate, % fat and % protein).
  • What is the breakdown of fats (saturated, unsaturated, monounsaturated, polyunsaturated)?
  • What is the breakdown of carbohydrates (sugars, fiber)?
  • How much cholesterol and sodium does the diet provide?
  • Is the diet a sufficient source of micronutrients and vitamins? Is an individual following this diet at risk for micronutrient deficiency?