Transcript for NASA Connect - Better Health From Space To Earth

[Lindsay:] Hi, I am Lindsay

[inaudible] from the TV
show "Grounded for Life".

On this episode of NASA
Connect, you will be introduced

to the importance of good
nutrition and exercise.

You will observe researchers and
scientists using math, science

and technology to learn
what we can learn in space

about our bodies here on earth.

In your classroom you will
do cool hands on activity

to estimate serving
sizes of different foods

and estimate your
average daily energy needs

and using the instructional
technology activity you'll develop

an exercise program
for Norbert and Zot.

So stay tune as Jennifer
Pulley takes you

on another exciting
episode of NASA Connects,

better health from space to earth.

[ Music ]

[Jennifer:] Here we go five, last
four makes you breathing, three,

two more, two come on you can
do it last one -- there we go.

Alright guys.

So grab some water,
rehydrate, take five.

[Jennifer:] Hi I am Jennifer
Pulley and welcome to NASA Connect.

The show that connects you to
math, science, technology and NASA.

In addition to being your
host I am also a Certified

Aerobics Instructor.

[RJ:] Hey!

Jennifer that was a great
workout, but I never know I had

so many stomach muscles.

[Jennifer:] But we do.

[RJ:] I hope you will
help me in my training.

[Jennifer:] Oh!

What do you training for?

[RJ:] Want to try off
my cross country team

and try also in a couple of weeks.

[Jennifer:] RJ that is super.

How's your training going?

[RJ:] Well, I guess its okay,

but I really don't have too
much energy during the day.

[Jennifer:] Well, have you
researched what nutrients your

body needs?

Because then you have to estimate
and measure portions to make sure

that the nutrients are in
there and of course you have

to have an exercise program.

[RJ:] Measuring, estimating
my nutritional needs

and exercise program, not
really I think I mean okay.

Do I look overweight?

[Jennifer:] No, not at all; tell
me what do you eat for breakfast?

[RJ:] I had a soda and
a glazed honey bun.

It's better than nothing.

[Jennifer Poly:] RJ a soda
and a glazed honey bun

that is loaded with sugar?

[RJ:] Yeah!

The sugar provides me with energy.

[Jennifer Poly:] Yeah, but that
energy doesn't last throughout the

whole day and that's
why you get tired.

You need something more
substantial for breakfast.

You know what I think -- I
think that we need to reevaluate

and improve your nutrition
and exercise program and not

where we can get you
in tip-top shape

for the cross country tryouts.

[RJ:] Okay.

[Lindsay:] Guys on today's program,
we will stress the importance

of good nutrition and exercise.

Especially in the adolescent
years and that's mean you.

We will visit with NASA researchers
to tell us what we can learn

in space about our
bodies here on earth.

And I will offer you a challenge
at the end of the program,

but before we talk more about
nutrition and exercise and visit

with NASA researchers, we must
first understand the mathematical

concepts for today's program, about
your estimation and measurement.

During the course of the
program you will be asked

to answer several
inquiry based questions.

After the questions
appear on the screen,

your teacher will pause the
program to allow you time to answer

and discuss the questions.

This is your time to explore
and become critical thinkers.

Students working in
groups take a few minutes

to answer the following questions:
Number one: What does it mean

to measure an estimate?

Number two: Are both math
concepts related to each other?

Explain. Number three: Give some
examples of things that you measure

and estimate everyday.

Now comparing your answers
to all three questions

with other groups in your class.

It is now time to pause the tape.

You know guys the math concepts
sub-measurement and estimation

on a central part
of our daily lives.

Let's think about things that
you measure on a daily basis.

Well, you measure time with
watches, weight with scales

and temperature with thermometers.

You may think of such measurements
as exact, but the accuracy

of a measurement depends on
the precision of the tool.

In this sense, measurements can
be thought up as estimations.

Now let's think about things
you estimate on a daily basis.

Like the length of time it takes
to get ready in the morning,

or how long you need to
walk to the bus stop,

or how much cereal you
pour into the bowl?

Estimation, is the
powerful mathematical idea

that can be used both to solve
problems and to check to see

if our results are reasonable.

You know, in reality
things aren't always exact

and good estimations
skills are really important

for living successfully.

For example,

[Jennifer:] Norbert
here wants to see

if the galactic fitness nine
thousand treadmill will fit

in his spare bedroom.

The dimensions for the base

of the treadmill are one point
eight meters by point nine meters.

Norbert's calculator
indicates that the base area

of the treadmill is sixteen
point two square meters.

Now does the base area of
sixteen point two square meters

for a treadmill seem
reasonable to you?

Sixteen point two square
meters square meters is

about the size of
Norbert's bedroom.

That would mean the galactic
fitness nine thousand is a pretty

big treadmill; unless, you tear
down a wall good luck trying

to squeeze the treadmill
through the door opening.

Actually, Norbert forgot
to enter the decimal point

in one point eight
on his calculator.

But using mental math Norbert's
estimates suggested that the area

of the treadmill should
be about two meters

by one meter or two square meters.

The actual base area

of the treadmill is one point
sixty two square meters.

In this case, Norbert used the
estimation technique of rounding.

Developing methods to check the
reasonable massive results is vital

to anyone working with
numbers especially engineers,

scientists and researchers.

[Lindsay:] So now you have a
good idea about the concepts

of measurement and estimation.

You know, this will be a
good time to pause the tape

and review your answers

to the three questions
I asked you earlier.

I just want to make sure
you are on the right track.

So how do you apply these
math concepts of estimation

and measurements to
nutrition and exercise?

Well, to answer this question
we must first learn what good

nutrition is and the
benefits of regular exercise?

[Jennifer:] Good nutrition
is critical throughout life,

but is most important for kids.

While the body is growing
good nutrition helps

to insure optimal health every
cell, every organ and every system

in the body relies
on good nutrition.

How many times have you fallen
asleep in class after lunch?

What do you typically
eat for lunch?

French fries, greasy
pizza, donuts, regular soda

or even glazed honey buns.

If you establish good
nutritional habits

at a young age it will help
lead to continuing these habits

as adults and remember guys the
key to anything you eat is the eat

in moderation that means
you don't eat an entire bag

of chips while watching TV.

An exercise is an integral part

of effective weight
maintenance and weight loss.

Exercise helps to control your
weight by using excess calories

that otherwise would
be stored as fat.

Regulation of body weight
is dependent on the number

of calories you eat
and use each day.

Balancing the calories you
use through physical activity

with calories you eat will help
you achieve your desired weight.

[RJ:] Now I have started to
understand the importance

of nutrition and exercise.

In order to stay healthy
throughout my life,

I have to start maintaining
a good level

of nutrition and exercise, now.

[Jennifer:] RJ I am
so proud of you.

You are on the right track buddy.

And did you know that NASA has an
interest in nutrition and exercise?

That's right, astronauts living

on the international space station
undergo changes in their body

that can affect the way
they function in space

and when they return to earth.

Think about this question,
what can we learn in space

about our bodies here on earth?

Also how do we apply the
math concepts of measurement

and estimation to
nutrition and exercise?

[ Music ]

[Jennifer:] Good form RJ.

Okay, well I help RJ with his
exercise and nutrition program.

Let's go visit Dr. Scott
Smith, a nutritionist

at NASA Johnson Space
Centre in Houston, Texas.

Keep going RJ.

[Dr. Scott Smith]: Thanks Jennifer,

hi my name is Scott Smith I am
the lead for NASA's nutrition

of our chemistry laboratory.

Jennifer provided you with
some great back and information

on the importance
of good nutrition.

Based on the information
she provided,

can you come up with the
definition for nutrition?

What is your daily
nutritional need for calcium?

How are you meeting that need?

In your groups take a few
minutes to answer the questions,

your teacher can now
pause the tapes

so you can collaborate
with your peers.

Nutrition is the study for the
body uses nutrients, like calories,

vitamins and minerals, and how
much we choose nutrients the

body needs?

Well, good nutrition is
important for everybody.

NASA scientists have

[inaudible] our chemistry

looking how astronauts nutrients
needs are affected by space walk.

One area that is very important is

about nutrition is
keeping bones healthy.

Not eating foods that include
nutrients such as calcium

and vitamin D can
result in weak bones.

You can find good sources
of calcium and vitamin E

in dairy products, such as milk
and chesses, broccoli and spinach.

Calcium is probably the most
important nutrient when it comes

to building strong bones.

More than 99% of the calcium in
your body is stored in bones,

when you don't get enough calcium
in your diet it comes out of bones

to help the other tissues.

If you do that long enough what
happens is the bones become weak

and brittle, it can lead to
diseases such as osteoporosis.

Osteoporosis is a disease where
the bones become fragile and break.

The best way to counter act or
prevent getting osteoporosis is

to eat well and exercise
when you are young.

So why are we concerned about
bone loss during in space life?

Astronaut's actually loose
bone mass during space walk.

This is especially significant for
long missions such as the astronaut

that serve in international
space station

or on future missions
to other planets.

When astronauts return from long
missions they have an increased

risk fractures and
another health problems

because they loose
bone mass and calcium.

Do you have any idea,
why this occurs?

Does that mean they get
osteoporosis while they are

in space?

The human body get used to operate
in an earth's gravity field.

When humans are removed
from this environment

as when they travel in space.

Many complex changes take place.

While living and working in
microgravity environment,

your body senses that
it doesn't need

as much bone mass
to support the body.

So bone mass decreases
when you are return

to earth's gravity environment,

your body senses it needs more
bone mass to support the body.

So bone mass will
begin to increase.

Because it takes a long time
to regain the lost bone,

this is the period when you have
the higher risk of bone fractures,

because your body skeleton has a
tougher time supporting your body

against earth's gravity.

Here at NASA we conduct research

to understand how much calcium
is being deposited into bones

and how much calcium is
being taken out of bones.

This research involves
mathematics, especially measurement

and estimation skills.

For example, let's take a look
at the following system diagram,

suppose Norbert was to consume
a thousand milligrams of calcium

which is the daily recommended
allowance in the form

of large glass of milk.

This diagram shows the path of
calcium and other nutrients follows

into Norbert's body from the mouth.

The milk enters the stomach and
is broken down into stomach

[inaudible] tested by
chemical processes.

Approximately, eighty percent

of the calcium per 800 milligrams
leaves the body as solid waste.

The remaining twenty percent
per two hundred milligrams

of calcium enters
your blood source.

The calcium will help many
of your body functions

and importantly will
prevent calcium

[inaudible] taken out of bones.

This is what happens when we
don't have enough calcium.

About five percent or fifty
milligrams of the remaining calcium

that is your kidneys and is
released as liquid waste;

some of the calcium will
be taken up in the bone

and some will also be released by
bone back into the blood stream.

Finally, a small percentage of
calcium flows in blood stream

into the larger intestine
and out as solid waste.

To estimate how much
calcium bones are absorbing,

how much calcium is
being taken out of bones?

We can give Norbert a tiny amount
of a special form of calcium

for this case the blue calcium.

Overtime usually ten to fourteen
days we collect biological samples

of solid waste, liquid
waste and blood.

We can determine how much calcium
regular or blue in each sample.

By mathematically analyzing the
data we can actually estimate the

amount of calcium
absorbed by the intestines,

how much calcium is
filtered by the kidneys,

how much calcium is being
deposited in the bone

and how much calcium is
being taken out of bone.

By studying the whole
calcium before, during,

and after space life, we can tell
how the body is changing during

flight and what is
happening to the calcium.

>From our estimates we can
conclude that the amount of calcium

that is deposited in a bone and
the amount of calcium released

by the bone back into the
blood is about the same.

This changes when astronauts
are in space the amount

of calcium absorbed by the
bone is less than the amount

of calcium released by the bone.

Finally when astronauts return
to earth and recover over time,

the amount of calcium deposited
in the bone and the amount

of calcium released
by bones stabilizes

and returns to pre-flight level.

Understanding this
specific means of how bone

and calcium is changed during
flight can help us figure out how

to counter act it and also
how to prevent bone disorders

on earth such as osteoporosis.

So we are beginning to understand
the importance of nutrition

and how nutrition can be
important for your health.

Have you changed into the answers
for the question I asked earlier,

now it would be great time to stop
the tape and review your answers.

[Jennifer:] Thanks Scott!

Okay guy's its time for
you to become a scientist

and apply your estimation
and measurement skills

with this program
Hands on Activity.

It was developed by the
National Space Biomedical

Research Institute.

Hey! Let's check in on the
students at the New Mexico school

for the Deaf in Santa
Fe New Mexico.

[Speaker:] NASA Connect asked us

to show you this program
Hands on Activities.

The first activity is
called Serving Sizes.

Here are the main objectives
for the first activity.

Students you will estimate
serving sizes of different foods

and compare their estimates to
serving size information provided

on nutrition facts food labels.

[Teacher:] Good morning class,

food labels are another
guides offer new serving sizes

to describe a recommended
single portion of food or drink.

NASA Connect asked us

to investigate the question
what is the serving size?

[Jennifer:] Your teacher
will provide you

with the nutrition fact
labels from these food items.

One bag of frozen piece, one
box of dry breakfast cereal,

one bag of popcorn and a two
liter of bottle of soft drink.

Copies of the labels are to
be distributed to groups.

You are to determine
appropriate serving sizes

for the different foods,
right the word estimate

onto three paper plates
and on to one cup.

Mark the other three paper
plates and cup as food label.

On the student handout
write the name of each food

under the food name column.

For each food estimate how many
cups or fractions of cups make

up one serving size, record your
estimate in the second column

of the table and measure
the portion

into the estimate plates and cup.

Next, measure on to the food label
plate and cup the serving size

for each food based on
the nutrition fact label.

You are then to write a
short paragraph answering the

activities discussion questions.

If you have access to personal
digital assistance so PDA's,

the PDA is a great device
for keeping a journal.

You can use the infrared

to peer edit journal
entries with others.

[Teacher:] Later in
this show our students

up in the New Mexico School

for the Deaf will show you the
second activity called your energy

needs; back to you Jennifer.

[Jennifer:] Now let's focus
our attention on exercise.

You know exercise and
nutrition go hand in hand.

Doctor Don Hagen, the exercise
lead in the Human Adaptations

and Counter Measures office.

At NASA Johnson Space
Centre can tell us more.

[Don Hagen:] Hello,
Jennifer is correct.

Good nutrition and
exercise are interconnected.

My job is the exercise lead
in the Human Adaptation

and Counter Measures office here
at the Johnson's Space Centre is

to work with the team of specialist

to determinate exercise
requirements for astronauts

and long-duration space life.

A long-durations space life
can be anywhere from months

on the international
space station to years

that we ever traveled
to other planets.

Before I continue, let's take a
look at the following questions.

Why is it important for
astronauts to exercise in space?

Do astronauts have
to be elite athletes

to endure a long duration
space life, explain?

What are some of the ways you
measure your level of fitness?

Students as your teacher pauses
the program take a few minutes

to answer and discuss the
questions with your class.

When astronauts work

in the international space
station they are working

in a microgravity environment.

They appear to be
floating in the ISS.

The apparent weightless
environment places are reduced low

on the leg and back muscles.

Astronauts hardly use
the leg muscles in space.

The lack of muscles activity
can cause the muscles

to weaken or reduce in size.

We call this muscle apathy.

It is possible astronauts
on long missions may loose

up to twenty five percent

of the muscles mass
while working in space.

The loss of muscle mass

and strength during these missions
could pose dramatic problems

when they return to earth.

Muscles support to bones in the
body and if you have a combination

of weak muscles and weak bones can
you imagine the harmful effects

your body could face?

To prevent muscle
atrophy astronauts must be

in good physical condition, while
here on earth for working in space.

Do astronauts need
to be elite athletes?

There are no physical requirements
for the astronauts other

than you have to be healthy and
pass a physical examination.

Astronauts perform physical
conditioning on a regular basis

as part of their training.

This also applies to them when
they are working in space.

The NASA team is responsible
for pre-flight, end-flight

and post-flight exercise
performance testing

for all astronauts.

We want to make sure astronauts
are in good shape before they go

into space, lose the least amount
of muscle mass while in space

and rehabilitate their whole
body when they return from space.

We can conduct research and
measure the muscles performance

of astronauts by simulating an
apparent weightlessness environment

here on earth.

Any ideas on how we can do that?

Exposure to space life is very
similar to prolonged bed rest;

remember a cause of muscle atrophy

in space is lack of
muscular activity.

That's why bed rest is a good model
because it minimizes activity.

And like astronauts, you loose
muscle mass primarily in the legs.

During prolonged bed rest
the body gradually degrades

and loses muscle mass, bone
mass and endurance capacity.

Let's look at an example of how
we measure muscle performance?

Suppose we use Norbert as
our test subject and want

to measure his exercise power
output during pre-flight,

in-flight and post-flight.

In pre-flight, we would first have
Norbert use a resistance device

to measures his leg power.

As you can see in the animation,
Norbert's legs are pretty strong.

He was able to lift one
hundred kilograms ten times.

Next, we simulate in-flight
testing by putting Norbert in bed

for an extended period
of time say twenty days.

During that period Norbert conducts
all his activities in bed except

for using the rest room.

On day twenty, we measure
his leg power again.

While in bed he is in the
same resistive device and see

that Norbert can only lift
seventy-five kilograms ten times.

What percent decrease in
leg power did Norbert loose

over the twenty days?

If you say twenty-five
percent then you are right.

After twenty days Norbert
is removed from the bed

and the rehabilitation process
begins to rebuild his leg muscles.

This is considered post-flight.

He undergoes an exercise
program that will allow him

to regain the strength
he lost in his legs.

I am sure glad he purchased up the

[inaudible] fitness nine
thousands treadmill.

In reality, the recovery process
is different for most astronauts.

It takes about thirty
days for muscles strength

and exercise capacity
to return to normal,

but bone density may
takes six months

to a year to return to normal.

The research we conduct
in space and here

on earth may one day benefit many
populations such as the elderly

or people who have
had major operations

and are subjected to
extended bed rest.

The important thing for you is that
exercise and good nutrition help

to build strong muscles,
bones, and endorse capacity

and that both are needed
throughout your life in order

to optimize your health
and thus for longer life.

Well, Jennifer back to you

and by the way how's
your friend's exercise

and nutrition program coming along.

[Jennifer:] Well, I think RJ
really understands the importance

of good nutrition and exercise
and if they go hand-in-hand

to maintain good health overall.

At the beginning of the program
do you remember RJ saying

that his energy level
was pretty low?

Well, energy fuels growth,
movement and all the process is

in every cell inside
the human body.

You know now is the good time
to go back and visit our friends

at the New Mexico's
School for the Deaf

to see how they are coming along

on their second activity
your energy needs

and how it applies to RJ's workout.

[Teacher:] In this activity,

you will estimate your
average daily energy needs.

We measure energy in calories.

Help RJ figure out
his energy needs.

You have to calculate his
baseline calorie need,

also called basal
metabolic rate or BMR.

BMR is estimated based on
gender, age, height, and weight.

[Jennifer:] You will work from
the baseline energy needs hand out

and the total energy needs
hand out which can be found

in the educator's guide.

The BMR value for men
well, in this case,

RJ can be calculated using
the following equation

where 'W' is the weight in
kilograms, 'H' is the height

in centimeter and 'A' is RJ's age.

The BMR equation for women
is different than men

but it also based on
weight, height and age.

By substituting RJ's weight, height
and age into the BMR equation,

the student's estimated
RJ's BMR value

to be one thousand six
hundred forty-five.

This is his baseline energy need.

Now if we factor in his exercise
level the baseline value needs

to be adjusted, because
RJ is trying

out for the cross country team,
his exercise level should be high,

meaning he is using
a lot of energy.

From the total energy needs hand
out we can adjust RJ's BMR value

by multiplying one thousand
six hundred forty-five

and one point nine.

The exercise level adjustments
are found in the handout.

It looks like the total
estimated energy needs

for RJ is three thousand one
hundred twenty-five calories

per day.

[Speaker:] Good luck to you RJ.

[ Music ]

[Jennifer:] Good job.

RJ is certainly on his way to
improving his exercise program,

and now it's your turn to develop

in exercise program
for Norbert and Zot.

The students at Princess and
Middle School in Virginia Beach,

Virginia will show you
this program web activity.

[Speaker:] There are two
parts to the web activity.

In the first part, called
the exercise project, Norbert

and Zot are on their galactic
fitness nine thousand treadmills.

Their doctor and trainer
have asked them

to exercise sixty minutes a day
and maintain an average heart rate

of one hundred beats per minute.

Their doctor has divided
their sixty minutes

into six ten minute periods

with a constant heart
rate during each period.

Your first job is to pick heart
rate targets for each segment,

to make their average come to
one hundred beats per minute.

Then you become the trainer and
pick a good exercise plan for them

and estimate their average
heart rate as per your plan.

In the second part
of the web activity,

call the heart plot project.

You need to measure and record
data on your own heart rate.

Plot your data using the
squeak heart plotter.

By analyzing the data
on your plots,

you will see how your heart
rate changes as you exercise.

[Jennifer:] Now it's your
turn to take nutrition

and exercise challenge brought you

by the National Space
Biomedical Research Institute.

Working in groups
you will choose one

of seven specialty menu
cards select from a person

with hypertension, a strict
vegetarian, a pregnant women,

a person who is an lactose
intolerance, a diabetic and athlete

in training or an
astronauts in space.

You will plan a menu for
breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks

that needs the particular
dietary needs described

on a specialty menu card.

You will also create
an exercise program

for this specialty
menu card you choose.

The instructions and
materials can be downloaded

from the NASA Connect website.

Then submit your nutrition
plan and exercise program

to the NASA Connect website.

There is a good chance that your
plan and program will be seen

by millions of students
across the country.

[Lindsey:] Well guys that wrap up
another episode of NASA connect.

We would like to thank everyone,

who help to make this
program possible

and you know RJ is doing
fantastic with his fitness

and nutrition program and we are
going to keep our fingers crossed

when he makes to the
cross country team.

As per us at NASA we help that
you will consider how to improve

and maintain your good health.

Got a comment.

question or suggestion?

Well then email them to or pick

up a pen and mail
them to NASA Connect.

NASA Langley Center
for Distance Learning,

NASA Langley Research Center
mail stop four hundred,

Hampton, Virginia, 23681.

So, until next time stay connected
to math, science, technology

and NASA, it's your
health, see you then.