Sitia, Greece

Current Nutrition: Human Body Composition - Metabolism & Cretan/Mediterranean Diet

when 22 August 2018 - 30 August 2018
language English
duration 2 weeks
credits 3 EC
fee EUR 450

Parts A and B are offered as one course-unit of 3 ECTS

Part A Title: Human Body Composition

Number of ECTS: 1.5

Teaching hours:
15 hours (3 hours per day). Plus a 2-hour evaluation on the 6th day.
The lessons include: i) Theory, ii) Theoretical exercise and iii) Laboratory

-Dr. Vassilis Zafiropulos, Professor of Applied Physics and Human Body Composition
-Mrs. Niki Koufaki, MSc, Laboratory Assistant

Mode of delivery:
Face-to-face teaching in the auditorium and practice in the laboratory. The teaching materials used are Power-point presentations, blackboard for theoretical exercise, videos, animation of methodologies and extensive practice on various methods in the laboratory.

Prerequisites: Basic principles of Physics and Chemistry

Course contents:
Definition/classification of obesity and underweight using percent body fat – when this classification differs from that of BMI. Existing models of body composition used for the various methods. Resting Metabolic Rate and correlation with body composition. Body densitometry techniques (underwater weighing and BodPod). Bioelectrical impedance analysis (BIA) and Bioelectrical Impedance Spectroscopy (BIS). Dual-energy X-ray Absorptiometry (DXA). Near-Infrared Interactance (NIR). Total Body Water (TBW) method. Imaging methods (MRI and CT). Total Body Potassium (TBK) method and neutron activation analysis methods. Skin-fold measurement (SKF). Combination of reference methods – multi-compartment models.

Assessment methods and criteria:
-Intermediate exercise/homework (30%)
-Interaction in class (10%)
-Active participation in the Lab (10%)
-Final written exam (50%)

Part B Title: Metabolism and Cretan-Mediterranean diet

Number of ECTS: 1.5

Teaching hours:
15 hours (3 hours per day). Plus a 2-hour discussion (practical evaluation test) on the 6th day
The lessons include: i) Theory, ii) Theoretical exercise (literature analysis)

-Dr. Georgios A. Fragkiadakis, Associate Professor of "Nutrition and Metabolism"
-Mr. Nikolaos Lapidakis, MSc, "Dairy Science"

Mode of delivery: Face-to- face teaching supported by Power-point presentations.

Prerequisites: Basic principles of Biology, Biochemistry and Food Science.

Course content:
-Food and habits in Cretan-Mediterranean diet (3 hours)
-The contribution of antioxidant mechanisms (2 hours)
-Overweight and obesity prevention (1 hour)
-Cardiovascular disease pathophysiology (3 hours)
-Pathophysiology of certain neoplasia (3 hours)
-Cognitive-function and dementia protection (1 hour)
-Current metabolomics and Med-diet (2 hours)

Assessment methods and criteria:
Practical test on innovative approaches concerning the content of the course.
Interactive generation of ideas on future metabolomics experimentation.

Course leader

Prof. Vassilis Zafiropulos (part A)
Prof. Georgios A. Fragkiadakis (part B)

Target group

Undergraduate students (last 2-years of studies)
Graduate students
Post-graduate students
Practising scientists

Course aim

Part A:
-To learn the principles of the established experimental methodologies for measuring the Composition of the Human body and the Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR).
-To understand the advantages and disadvantages of each method separately.
-To learn how to select the proper method, depending on the situation and the needs.
-To exercise on practical problems of assessing body composition (e.g. percent body fat, body hydration etc.) from real collected data.
-To practice on various methods in the laboratory.
-The development of critical thinking, in order to be able to correctly assess body composition of the client. This is an important part of modern nutritional assessment methodology.

Part B:
To understand current approaches and findings concerning the biological mechanisms acting in populations and individuals which follow Mediterranean diet. The Cretan-Mediterranean diet was the first to be described and has been ever since generally accepted as a healthy eating prototype associated with low cardiovascular diseases mortality.
The term Mediterranean diet that has been adopted by many researchers emphasizes eating habits of the region; still, this diet can be followed in other geographic areas also. The main principles of the diet include eating functional food, more fresh vegetables and whole-grain cereals; using, practically only, olive oil for cooking; eating poultry and fish; fresh fruit, and drinking one or two small glasses of red wine with lunch. This type of diet is contemporary proved, through observational and intervention studies, to affect intermediate metabolism in a way protective to the consumer, while monitoring the metabolites generated we can draw valuable biomedical conclusions concerning the physiological as well as the patho-physiological mechanisms functioning in the human body.
Following the course, the participant will be better prepared for critical reading and understanding current and future perspectives of the topics: functional food, Med-diet, metabolic pathways, physiology and pathophysiology of the human body as influenced by specific diets.

Fee info

EUR 450: Registration fee includes:

Admission to academic sessions.
Summer School Pack (badge, CD with teaching material, final program).
Coffee breaks.
Transfer by bus from the center of Sitia to the premises of the Department and return back to Sitia at the end of each daily session.
Reception Drink.
Official Dinner.
Daily trip to Palm Beach of Vai followed by a visit to Toplou Monastery on Sunday 26 of August.