GERO 407: Nutrition and aging

(For further assistance with your assignment, ask at the Belzberg Library Reference Desk or contact Nina Smart, Liaison Librarian for Gerontology (778.782.5043 (Tuesdays and Thursdays) or nsmart@sfu.caMonday to Thursday.

Course description

Students will examine  how changes associated with advancing years influence nutrient requirements and dietary needs, as well as food procurement, preparation and enjoyment. 

The course includes an overview of relevant physiology of aging and age - related clinical conditions (and their treatments) that influence dietary requirements and/or nutritional  status.  These, and age-associated physical and psycho-social , economic and environmental factors will also be examined for their influence on food security and  food  choice.

Students will  have an opportunity to investigate and report on a variety of  popular diets and supplements claiming to reduce the effects of aging, as well as programs,  policies and products designed to support nutritional well-being in later years. For more information see the GERO 407 Course page  or Canvas pages.

Resources for case study assignment


  • APA handbook of clinical geropsychology [online] Covers psychological and medical  issues, such as depression, anxiety, sleep disorders, dementia and bereavement and other psycho-social challenges.
  • Handbook of clinical nutrition and aging  [online] Includes medical conditions
  • Oxford desk reference: geriatric medicine  [online] Major diseases and medical conditions of the elderly and their physical challenges
  • Handbook of nutraceuticals. [online] Vol. 1 Ingredients, formulations, and applications: functional foods and and dietary supplements
  • The H.E.R.B.A.L. guide : dietary supplement resources for the clinician [online] dietary supplements 
  • PubMed Dietary Supplement Subset (online database) Journal articles about dietary supplements
  • CPS (online database) Evidence-based, reliable Canadian drug and therapeutic information. Includes prescription medications and supplements and OTC medicines
  • See also: nutrition and medical books in Useful Books.

Commercial products

Examples of commercial and institutional pages:

Services in British Columbia

For services, see Seniors/Seniors' Health sections of:

Social programs

  • bc211 (aka The Red Book) finding social programs in Vancouver (search the subject "Seniors")
  • 2021 Seniors' Directory The "Red book" for the North Shore

Resources for online participation


Useful web sites

Including association and governmental pages and and online analysis tools


British Columbia




Useful books

Nutrition titles

  • Encyclopedia of Human Nutrition (online)
  • Encyclopedia of gerontology (online)
  • Foods and dietary supplements in the prevention and treatment of disease in older adults (online)
  • Nutritional aspects of aging (online)
  • Handbook of nutrition in the aged (online)

Medical and health titles

  • Black's medical dictionary (online) for the general reader
  • Concise Medical Dictionary (online) "for students and those working in the medical and allied professions"
  • The Gale encyclopedia of diets a guide to health and nutrition (online) See major article "Senior Nutrition" as well as Index section Aging and the elderly
  • Oxford illustrated companion to medicine (online) For the general reader
  • Report on Health and Aging in Canada  Longitudinal Study on Aging (CLSA)  2018 See Chapter 10 Lifestyle and behaviour, on nutrition habits