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44. Public Lectures


20. Februar 2020, 17-19 Uhr, Universität Heidelberg am Universitätsplatz, Hörsaal 13, Grabengasse 3, 69117 Heidelberg



Prof. Dr. Britta Renner I Universität Konstanz
"Why we eat what we eat: A psychological perspective "

How many nutritional choices are you making on average per day? Would you be surprised to learn that we typically make on average about 200 decisions a day? You can certainly remember specific decisions and behaviors (e.g. what you ate for lunch) but many other decisions and behaviors (e.g. how long or how fast you ate) you probably remember less well or maybe not at all. This example shows that our everyday, "normal" nutritional behavior is one of the most complex, but at the same time most fascinating human behaviors. The great variety of what we eat, but also the variability when, where and with whom we eat, illustrates the high adaptability of normal eating behavior. The high number of nutrition-related decisions immediately suggests that our eating behavior is only partly controlled by conscious processes and decisions, and that unconscious processes and habits play a key role in shaping our behavior. These unconscious or automatic processes are often triggered by environmental stimuli (e.g. portion sizes) and certain situations (e.g. stress levels). In contrast, most health information campaigns aim to explicitly name the positive and negative behavioral consequences, assuming that behavior is controlled rationally. In the present talk, various explicit and implicit control mechanisms of nutritional behavior are presented and ways are shown how a change in nutritional behaviors can be induced, which are based on positive incentives for the respective behavior and take into account automatic processes and habits.



Bauer KlProf. Dr. Jürgen M. Bauer I Agaplesion Bethanien Krankenhaus Heidelberg
The "perfect" weight in older age Scale versus Laissez-faire

In recent years, the subject matter of the “perfect” weight has been discussed in a more sophisticated way than before. An ideal weight recommendation which applies for all age groups does not exist any longer. On the contrary, the appropriate weight for a person is largely influenced by age, individual comorbidity and a person`s body composition. For example, in older individuals the relative proportion between fat mass and muscle mass has a serious impact on the risk of becoming dependent. The relevance of body mass index (BMI) for mortality decreases in older age, while the conservation of muscle mass becomes more and more important in this regard. For seniors, the old German saying that it is “a good thing to have some fat on the ribs” is especially true, when serious comorbidity is present. The “perfect” weight in older age requires an individual recommendation and it must not be the subject of crude generalization.



Dr. Sabine Goisser I Netzwerk Alternsforschung, Universität Heidelberg

A balanced, varied and diverse diet can help to prevent some illnesses and contribute to the maintenance of health, physical performance and independence in old age. This has been examined in many scientific studies. However, more and more certain foods or diets are advertised with sometimes completely exaggerated promises of effects on health and well-being, to the point of promising the extension of life. Some of these promises will be critically examined in this lecture, and it will be discussed what findings today seem to be trustworthy in this area.







Moderation I Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Konrad Beyreuther

Minipfeil RotFlyer





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Latest Revision: 2020-01-24
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