STUDENT LIFE / OCT. 27, 2014
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How to Make the Most of Nutrition Courses

You can’t put it off anymore: it’s time to take that nutrition course you’ve been avoiding. Or maybe you’re fascinated by nutrition but don’t see the point in taking it as elective for your chosen educational path. Whether you’ve resigned yourself to taking that nutrition course or are looking for a good reason to sign up, here’s how you can make the most of it.

First things first

Nutrition courses involve a lot more than “eat your fruits and vegetables.” A lot of people think of nutrition as an “easy A,” but there’s some pretty hardcore science involved. If you’re taking nutrition as part of a degree in a health field, make sure you’ve got your basic sciences – definitely biology, and ,ideally chemistry, – covered before you dive into nutrition. Otherwise, you may not be able to follow classroom conversations (whether in person or online) and will therefore miss out on a lot of what the class has to offer.

Think about application

We’ve all been there – you have to take a particular course to graduate, but you can’t imagine how you’d ever use it. You just sit there in class wishing you were somewhere else. That’s a waste. Nutrition affects every living thing on this planet, so surely you can come up with some ideas on how you can use what you’re learning. If you’re going to open your own childcare facility, you could use what you’re learning to determine what snacks and meals you should be serving the children. Considering the military? Good nutrition will help your body with the required training. If you’re going to be a sports reporter, you could be learning valuable background information on how nutrition affects athletic performance. Maybe you’d like to open your own restaurant someday and could specialize in healthy food that tastes great. And there’s always parenting. Even if you don’t have children now, you might someday, and the responsibility for their nutrition will lie solely with you.

Live it

So maybe you’re going to be an artist with five cats who only goes out to get the mail. Or maybe you’re going to be a mortician, and your clients will be far past the need for nutritional guidance. Maybe you want to become a fashion designer, in which case the only time nutrition will come into play is when you have to decide what size clothes people will need for the upcoming season.

Even if there’s nothing in your career plans that could get a boost from a nutrition course, that doesn’t mean taking the course is a waste. You still have a body, and it’s the only one you’re going to get. What you eat has an impact on how much energy you have, what diseases you’re susceptible to, what you weigh, how quickly you recover from injury or illness, and even on how long you live. Even if you never use the things you learn in a nutrition course for anything other than making better personal decisions, it’s more than worth it.

If you want to take a nutrition course, stop looking for a reason. Your personal health and well-being are reason enough. And if you’re taking a nutrition course because you have to, it’s worth the effort to pay attention and do your best.

 

image: flickr via Amanda Devries, 2010

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