Exercise physiology and nutrition related to wellness

A.Y. 2019/2020
Overall hours
BIO/09 MED/49
Learning objectives
The course is conducted via frontal lectures and workshops sessions; it provides knowledge on the physiology of physical exercise across the various stages of life (childhood, adulthood, old age) and in persons with disability. The course provides knowledge on the concept of balanced diet, the role of nutrition in maintaining health, and the characteristics of food products for athletes. The course provides knowledge on the approach to individuals who, having completed rehabilitation for a common disorder and are clinically stable, engage in or wish to engage in physical exercise to attain full physical well-being.
Expected learning outcomes
Students will acquire knowledge on health and illness common for age groups and adaptation of body systems to physical exercise of various degrees of intensity. Students will acquire knowledge in energy demand and nutrient supply, nutritional properties, and dietary models for health promotion.
Course syllabus and organization

Single session

Lesson period
First semester
Course syllabus
· Exercise physiology and pulmonary gas exchanges: aerobic, anaerobic alactic and lactic performance. On- and off-kinetics of pulmonary oxygen uptake. Oxygen debt during exercise at steady-state. Theoretical approach to the factors limiting maximum aerobic power, and practical applications.
· Cardiovascular function at different ages in health and disease.
· Respiratory function at different ages in health and disease.
· Physical exercise and fatigue: novel approaches to understand central and peripheral fatigue.
· Physical exercise in youth.
· The exercise physiology of ageing.
· The physiology of some chronic and stable diseases, such as heart failure and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.
· Principles of physiology of gastrointestinal system
· Carbohydrates, lipids and proteins: structure, digestion and absorption, metabolism, nutritional quality, dietary requirements in different age groups and intake levels in Italian diet
· Definition of balanced diet, dietary reference intakes of energy and nutrients for Italian population (LARN) and guidelines for a healthy diet
· Evidence for the role of nutrition in the promotion of health status
· Role of micronutrients (vitamins and minerals) and fiber: classification, metabolic and functional effects. Role of phytochemicals with impact on human health
· Classification of food groups, as sources of nutrients and phytochemicals, effects of food processing
· Functional foods: definitions and contribution for the physical activity, significance of Health Claims
· Foods intended to meet the expenditure of intense muscular effort, especially for sportsmen, and scientific evidence, Reg 1169/2011 (GDA), European legislation on functional foods for physical activity.
Prerequisites for admission
Preliminary knowledges to this course include basic elements of Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Biochemistry and Anatomy, and deep knowledge of Nutrition, Human Physiology ans Exercise Physiology.
Teaching methods
Lectures will be taught traditionally in the classroom with the aid of blackboard and slides.
Attendance to the course is mandatory.
Teaching Resources
Suggested books:
- Autori vari. ATTIVITÀ FISICA: fisiologia, adattamenti all'esercizio, prevenzione, sport-terapia
e nutrizione. a cura di Giuseppe d'Antona, Poletto Editore.
- Energetics of Muscular Exercise. Ferretti, Guido; Springer.
- McArdle, Katch, Katch. Exercise Physiology: Nutrition, Energy, and Human Performance (Lippincott Williams & Wilkins).
- ACSM's Resource manual for Guidelines for Exercise Testing and Prescription - Fifth edition 2006.
- Mariani Costantini A., Cannella C., Tomassi G. Fondamenti di nutrizione umana (Il Pensiero Scientifico Editore, Roma).
- Giampietro M. L'alimentazione per l'esercizio fisico e lo sport (Il Pensiero Scientifico Editore, Roma).
Assessment methods and Criteria
Oral exam will be an oral interview aiming at assessing the student's knowledge of the topics listed in the programme. Final exam will be mandatory at the end of the course and consist in an oral examination with a final grade up to 30/30.
BIO/09 - PHYSIOLOGY - University credits: 6
MED/49 - FOOD AND DIETETIC SCIENCES - University credits: 3
Practicals: 12 hours
Lessons: 48 hours
By appointment
Via Antonio Kramer 4/A - 20129 Milano or Via Giuseppe Colombo 71, (Building #2) - 20133 Milano