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Recommended Dietary Allowance

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Recommended Dietary Allowance

Lab: Comparison of One's RDA For Energy and Nutrients to One's Actual Nutritional Intake

Key Question: Does my diet meet the Recommended Dietary Allowance
(RDA) for energy and nutrients considered adequate to meet my needs
(maintain weight) under environmental stresses?

Hypothesis: If I keep track of the food I consume for 5 days, then I
will find that my diet does not meet my RDA for the energy and
nutrients that are considered adequate to maintain my needs under
environmental stresses.

As a busy teen, my meals are often on the go. Since my daily
activities such as volunteering keep me from coming home in time for
dinner, I often have to rely on fast food for my meal. In addition, my
early morning classes rarely allow me to eat a proper breakfast, which
translates into me buying my breakfast in the school cafeteria. Also,
when I go out with my friends, we do not choose the healthiest of
foods. All of these factors indicate to me that my diet is inadequate
to meet my needs under environmental stresses.

Variables:

Independent variable: the food taken in

Dependent variable: the nutritional value of the food taken in versus
the RDA

Controlled variables: same reference for the nutritional values of
food used for information consistency

Materials:

* Internet

* Nutrition booklet


o Calculator
------------

Procedure:

1. Determine your Total Calories per day (kcal/day) based on your
Nutritional Profile at the following web site:

http:www.cyberdiet.com/profile/profile.html

2. Convert this total to Total kJ Energy per day (using the ratio 1
kcal = 4.2 kJ)

3.

a. Use a calculator for this and the following calculations

4. Calculate your Total kJ Energy of protein per day using the fact
that a person needs approximately 10% protein in an ideal balanced
diet

5. Convert this number to grams using the fact that 1 gram of
protein = 17 kJ.

6. Calculate your Total kJ Energy of carbohydrates per day using the
fact that a person needs approximately 60% carbohydrates in an
ideal balanced diet

7. Convert this number to grams using the fact that 1 gram of
carbohydrates = 17 kJ.

8. Calculate your Total kJ Energy of protein per day using the fact
that a person needs approximately 30 % fat in an ideal balanced
diet.

9. Convert this number to grams using the fact that 1 gram of fat =
38 kJ.

10. Fill out a data table showing your nutrient requirements based
on your recommended daily allowances. Use a commonly accepted RDA
table to find your recommended daily intake of calcium, iron,
zinc, vitamin A and vitamin C. In this table include energy
(kJ/day), protein (g/day), carbohydrates (g/day), fat (g/day),
calcium (mg/day), iron (mg/day), zinc (mg/day), vitamin A (ug
RE/day), and vitamin C (mg/day). (Use Data Table 1 as an example).

11. For 5 consecutive days, record everything you eat and drink,
amounts included. If possible, record the nutritional content of
your consumed food/drink at the time you consume it.

12. Complete 5 data tables just like Data Tables 2,3,4,5 and 6
showing the foods you consumed, the quantity, and nutrient
analyses. Use the internet or the nutritional booklet to find the
nutritional content of the food/drink you have consumed.

13. Record the daily totals in a separate data table, just like Data
Table 7.

14. Average your 5 daily totals for each nutrient.

15. Summarize/compare your average daily total with your RDA in
final tables, just like Tables 1 and 2.

Data:



Data Table 1: Juliya's RDA
==========================



Energy
======

(kJ/day)

Protein

(g/day)

Carb.

(g/day)

Fat

(g/day)

Calcium

(mg/day)

Iron

(mg/day)

Zinc

(mg/day)

Vitamin A

(ug RE/day)

Vitamin C

(mg/day)

8769.6

63

51.6

309.5

1300

15

12

800

60

See appendix A p. 10 for calculations.


Data Table 2: Nutritional Content of Food/Drink for Day 1

Food/ Drink and amount:



Energy
======

(kJ/

day)

Protein

(g/day)

Carb.

(g/day)

Fat

(g/day)

Calcium

(mg/day)

Iron

(mg/day)

Zinc

(mg/day)

Vitamin A

(ug RE/day)

Vitamin C

(mg/day)

1 cup 1% milk

428

8

12

3

300

0.12

0.95

144

2

2 oranges

521

2

30

6

104

0.26

0.18

54

248

1 cup cheerios

378

3

16

1

39

3.66

0.64

304

12

2 cup green tea

17

<1

0

0

10

0.1

0.14

0

0

Chicken chow mein

(2 cups)

2142

62

20

20

114

5

4.2

100

20

1 bar of dark chocolate

559

1

17

8

5

0.59

0.42

1

0



Data Table 3: Nutritional Content of Food/Drink for Day 2
=========================================================

Food/ Drink:



Energy
======

(kcal/

day)

Protein

(g/day)

Carb.

(g/day)

Fat

(g/day)

Calcium

(mg/day)

Iron

(mg/day)

Zinc

(mg/day)

Vitamin A

(ug RE/day)

Vitamin C

(mg/day)

2 oranges

521

2

30

6

104

0.26

0.18

54

248

1 ham and cheese sandwich on whole wheat

1727

24

33

22

228

2.93

3.27

88

14

1 egg

311

6

1

5

25

0.72

0.55

0.03

0

1 cup 1% milk

428

8

12

3

300

0.12

0.95

144

2

½ can coke

298

0

19

<1

95

0.06

0.37

0

0

1 blueberry granola bar

588

3

33

0

20

3.6

0

0

0

1 can pepsi

638

0

38

<1

19

0.12

0.74

0

0

8 chocolate chip cookies

1613

2

50

20

12

2.04

0.38

42

0

1 can pepsi

638

0

38

<1

19

0.12

0.74

0

0

1 cup orange juice

470

2

26

<1

27

0.5

0.12

50

124

Data Table 4: Nutritional Content of Food/Drink for Day 3

Food/ Drink:



Energy
======

(kJ/

day)

Protein

(g/day)

Carb.

(g/day)

Fat

(g/day)

Calcium

(mg/day)

Iron

(mg/day)

Zinc

(mg/day)

Vitamin A

(ug RE/day)

Vitamin C

(mg/day)

1 plate scrambled eggs

424

7

1

7

43

0.73

0.62

119

<1

1 can coke

608

0

38

<1

19

0.12

0.74

0

0

1 cup lemonade, from concentrate

416

<1

26

<1

7

0.4

0.1

5

10

6 cups water

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

4 pieces of cheese pizza

4133

60

114

36

1260

10.8

8.2

180

14

1 apple

340

<1

21

<1

10

0.25

0.05

11

12

7 crackers

252

2

12

<1

28

0.58

0.21

0.04

<1

2 cups green tea

17

<1

0

0

10

0.1

0.14

0

0

Data Table 5: Nutritional Content of Food/Drink for Day 4

Food/ Drink:



Energy
======

(kJ/

day)

Protein

(g/day)

Carb.

(g/day)

Fat

(g/day)

Calcium

(mg/day)

Iron

(mg/day)

Zinc

(mg/day)

Vitamin A

(ug RE/day)

Vitamin C

(mg/day)

2 beets

185

2

10

<1

16

0.79

0.35

4

4

2 plain bagels

1571

14

72

2

100

4.86

1.2

0

0

2 cups milk 1%

857

16

24

6

600

0.24

1.90

288

4

1 piece pita bread

693

5

33

1

52

1.58

0.5

0.36

0

1 4-oz steak

958

34

0

9

12

3.81

7.39

0

0

2 cups spaghetti

827

7

40

1

10

1.96

0.74

0

0

½ cup spaghetti mushroom sauce

454

2

13

3

15

1

0.34

242

9

½ cup cooked carrots

140

1

8

<1

24

0.48

0.23

1913

2

1 plate cherries

630

3

33

<1

30

0.72

0.12

42

15

1 cup orange juice

470

2

26

<1

27

0.5

0.12

50

124

2 chocolate chip cookies

403

1

13

5

3

0.51

0.1

11

0


Data Table 6: Nutritional Content of Food/Drink for Day 5

Food/ Drink:



Energy
======

(kJ/

day)

Protein

(g/day)

Carb.

(g/day)

Fat

(g/day)

Calcium

(mg/day)

Iron

(mg/day)

Zinc

(mg/day)

Vitamin A

(ug RE/day)

Vitamin C

(mg/day)

1 plain bagel

785

7

36

1

50

2.43

0.6

0

0

2 cups grapefruit juice

790

2

44

<1

34

0.98

0.44

4

144

1 banana

437

1

27

1

7

0.35

0.18

9

10

1 apple

525

<1

32

1

15

0.38

0.08

11

12

1 plate mashed potatoes

932

4

36

4

27

0.27

0.28

57

6

2 cups 1% milk

856

16

24

6

600

0.24

1.9

288

4

1 bowl chicken broth

92

4

1

0

0

0.39

0

0

0

1 cup green tea

8

<1

0

0

5

0.05

0.07

0

0

Data Table 7: Daily Totals for the Nutritional Content of Food/Drink
Consumed for the 5 Consecutive Days.

Total for Day #



Energy
======

(kJ/

day)

Protein

(g/day)

Carb.

(g/day)

Fat

(g/day)

Calcium

(mg/day)

Iron

(mg/day)

Zinc

(mg/day)

Vitamin A

(ug RE/day)

Vitamin C

(mg/day)

1

4042

77

95

38

575

9.73

6.55

603

282

2

7232

47

280

58

849

10.47

7.3

378

374

3

6190

70

212

44

1375

13

10.06

315

36

4

7188

87

272

30

889

16.5

13

2550

158

5

4605

34

200

13

730

5.09

3.55

369

176

Data Analysis:

Table 1: Comparison of Juliya's RDA with her Actual Average Daily
Totals of Energy (kJ/day), Protein (g/day), Carbohydrates (g/day) and
Fat (g/day).



Energy
======

(kJ/day)

Protein

(g/day)

Carb.

(g/day)

Fat

(g/day)

Juliya's Average Daily Total

5851.4

63

212

37

Juliya's RDA

8769.6

51.6

309.5

69.3

Table 2: Comparison of Juliya's RDA with her Actual Average Daily
Totals of Calcium (mg/day), Iron (mg/day), Zinc (mg/day), Vitamin A
(ug RE/day) and Vitamin C (mg/day):

Calcium

(mg/day)

Iron

(mg/day)

Zinc

(mg/day)

Vitamin A

(ug RE/day)

Vitamin C

(mg/day)

Juliya's Average Daily Total

883

11

8.1

843

205

Juliya's RDA

1300

15

12

800

60

Conclusion:

I accept my hypothesis: "if I keep track of the food I consume for 5
days, then I will find that my diet does not meet my RDA for the
energy and nutrients that are considered adequate to maintain my needs
under environmental stresses."

Firstly, I did not meet my daily energy requirement of 8769.6 kJ by
about 2000 kJ! This suggests to me that all those skipped meals such
as lunch, breakfast and supper add up to my body not having enough
energy, thus, making me fatigued, and reducing my ability to
concentrate, and perform daily tasks efficiently. To prevent this from
happening, I must find time to have regular meals throughout the day.
Making myself a lunch before I go to bed would increase my chances of
having a proper, nutritional meal in the middle of the day, when I do
not have time to think of nutrition.

I found that I exceeded my daily protein requirement of 51.6 grams by
about 12 grams. However, I exercise about 2-3 times a week, and
seriously train for long-distance running during the fall season, so
having extra protein to build up muscle is good for me. I would
continue eating an increased amount of protein, especially in the
fall.

In addition, the excess protein that is not used by my body to build
and repair tissues is deaminated by the liver and formed into
carbohydrates. This is good, because I did not meet my daily
carbohydrate requirement of 309.5 grams by about 100 grams. To
increase my intake of carbohydrates, I will attempt to incorporate
foods such as pasta and rice into my diet, as carbohydrates are
important for short-term energy.

I also did not meet my daily requirement of 69.3 grams of fat by about
30 grams! This could have a negative impact on my body because fat's
most important function is the body's long-term energy storage. This
means that if I were ever to be lacking food, I would starve much
sooner than one with someone with a plentiful supply of stored fat.
However, one must consider that we live in a society that promotes
slenderness. Low-fat diets are extremely popular, and promoted to be
healthy by the media, as well as our culture. As an impact of the
social pressure, I predict that many of my peers would also not meet
their recommended daily fat requirements.

I found that my calcium intake was quite low. I did not meet my daily
requirement of 1300 mg of calcium by about 500 mg. This can have
extremely negative repercussions. Calcium deficiency may result in
poor teeth and bone formation, and slow clotting time of the blood. A
constant deficiency of calcium over many years could also potentially
result in osteoporosis. Being a female, I am at an especially high
risk for osteoporosis. Thus, after completing this lab, I will make a
conscious effort to increase my intake of calcium by eating more
green, leafy vegetables, drinking more milk, and eating more dairy
products.

My intake of iron was also low, about 4 milligrams less than my
recommended daily requirement of 15 milligrams. Since iron is
essential for the formation of hemoglobin, a deficiency of iron could
result in anemia, causing dizziness, weakness and pallor. Since my
mother does not cook a lot of meat on a weekly basis, I can ensure
that I am getting enough iron by supplementing my breakfasts with
eggs, and eating whole grain bread at dinner.

I am also deficient in zinc, as I did not meet my daily recommended
requirement of 12 milligrams by about 4 milligrams. Zinc is important
to my body, as it is a part of some digestive enzymes. A deficiency in
zinc may result in a scaly skin inflammation, impaired immunity and
reproduction failure. To increase my daily intake of zinc, I will
incorporate more grains into my diet, and whenever possible, increase
my intake of seafood and meat.

My intake of vitamin A is sufficient, as I am taking in only about 40
milligrams more than my recommended daily allowance of 800 milligrams.
Although it is unlikely that this slight excess of vitamin A would
cause me much harm, there is still a risk that it may cause headaches,
dizziness, nausea and hair loss.

Finally, my intake of vitamin C is greater than my recommended daily
allowance of 60 milligrams by about 160 milligrams! This great excess
of vitamin C could cause gout, kidney stones, diarrhea, and decreased
copper absorption. To reduce my risk of these problems, I would have
to reduce my intake of vitamin C. For instance, I could eat fewer
oranges, and more bananas.

However, one must also consider that the RDA is based on a standard
table, which does not take into consideration one's unique needs such
as their exact level of activity, or health. Thus, the RDA values from
the table should only be viewed as a guideline for one's diet, and
consulting a dietician or a doctor is the best method of making an RDA
chart that is custom made for you.

Evaluation:

Errors:

o Stress from homework and school has caused my eating habits to be
less regular than they would normally be

o Due to multiple activities taking place during the months of
February and March, my schedule was more hectic than in other months,
also causing my eating habits to be more irregular than usual.

o During the wintertime, fruit and vegetables are less readily
available, and due to the high current prices on them, they are less
affordable, and thus, are less abundant in my diet. This would reduce
my intake of the vitamins and minerals available in such produce.

o The nutritional booklet does not contain information on all the
different brands available on the market, so I had to record the
nutritional information for the closest possible match. As there is
surely a discrepancy between brands, it is impossible to tell whether
or not I have recorded the exactly correct nutritional information for
the product I have used. This may have affected my overall results.

o The RDA is only a guideline, it does not take into account your
individual needs such as health. Thus, it is not exact in its values.
Therefore, comparing your diet to these inexact values does not make
for a valid conclusion.

Modifications:

o Perform this experiment during a different time of the year and see
if your nutritional intake changes with the seasons.

o Consult a dietician before this experiment, who will assess your
needs, and come up with and RDA table that is customized to fit your
lifestyle.

o Perform this experiment over a longer period of time, such as a
month. This would give you a better estimate of your average daily
nutritional intake.

o Since stress contributes to poor eating habits, perform this
experiment during a normal week, not during a week of stressing after
studying for exams. Thus, you would get a better estimate of your
nutritional intake in an average week of your life.

Works Cited:

"Cyberdiet: Succeed at Weight Loss." Feb. 2003.

URL: http://www.cyberdiet.com/profile/profile.html

"Appendix H: Table of Food Composition." Canada: Recommendations,
Exchanges, and Labels.

à Nutritional Booklet provided by Mr. Davies.

How to Cite this Page

MLA Citation:
"Recommended Dietary Allowance." 123HelpMe.com. 28 Jul 2014
    <http://www.123HelpMe.com/view.asp?id=121887>.




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