Nutritional Sciences and Toxicology 24, Section 1
Nutrition and Wellness (1 unit, P/NP)
Professor Gregory Aponte
Thursday 11:00-12:00, 3119 Etcheverry Hall, Class number: 44473
This seminar will provide basic tools to help guide one through making dietary decisions to achieve and/or maintain a healthy body and mind. The first part of the seminar discussions will explore the basic elements that make up a healthy diet in light of the body's metabolic and physiological needs. The second part will examine the interplay between nutrition and behavior, such as food intake regulation, eating disorders, responses to alcohol, and responses to stress. The focus of topics will vary depending on class interest. All freshmen
Our laboratory has been characterizing how dietary nutrients (before they are metabolized) can be signals that cause changes in gene regulation and/or the release of bioactive molecules from peripheral tissues and nerves. We discovered specific receptors on sensory neurons that are stimulated by nutrients, hormones, and unique molecules present in lymphatic fluid. We are investigating if these neurons are part of a system whereby dietary molecules (and also molecules from peripheral tissues) can activate local neurons that stimulate spinal nerves or the brain. This system provides a new pathway for the regulation of central nervous system activity, metabolism, and behavior in response to biologically active molecules and nutrients, and expands our concept of the gut-brain axis.