Resource Image Nutrition: What Happens to the Food I Eat?
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Type of Resource: Science Object
Average Rating: Rating
 based on 7 reviews
Publication Title: None
Grade Level: Elementary School, High School, Middle School


Science Objects are two hour on-line interactive inquiry-based content modules that help teachers better understand the science content they teach. This Science Object, co-developed between FDA and NSTA, is the second of four Science Objects in the Nutrition SciPack. It discusses how the body makes use of foods’ nutrients, after food is digested into simpler substances. These simpler substances must then be absorbed through the lining of the small intestine and transported for use throughout the body for physiological processes. In cells, these nutrients and substances derived from them are taken in and react to provide the biochemical constituents needed to synthesize other molecules. Some cells store energy from the breakdown of some nutrients in specific chemicals that are used to carry out the many functions of the cell. The circulatory system moves substances to the cells and removes waste products. Lungs take in oxygen for metabolism and eliminate the carbon dioxide produced, excretory systems rid the body of dissolved and solid waste products, and the skin and lungs rid the body of excess heat energy.

Ideas For Use


Posted in Life Science by Patricia Rourke on Mon May 09, 2011 7:14 PM

NSTA also has the great SciGuide and free SciObjects abailable to members. They are a wonderful resource for elementary...
Tactfully covering: The Gas We Pass??
Posted in Life Science by Carolyn Mohr on Fri Apr 22, 2011 3:02 PM

Hi Mara, The NSTA Learning Center has a Science Object you might be interested in:[url=
Organic Molecules
Posted in Chemistry by Jennifer Rahn on Tue Nov 16, 2010 2:44 PM

The Nutrition SciPack contains a great deal of information about the chemistry and biology related to the food we eat. T...
Organic Molecules
Posted in Chemistry by Adah Stock on Tue Nov 16, 2010 10:55 AM

Hi! This is a good idea but a huge topic. I found an interesting connection that would work well with a biology teache...

Additional Info

Science Discipline: (mouse over for full classification)
Cell respiration
Chemical reactions
Cellular structures
Cardiovascular system
Digestive system
Excretory system
Respiratory system
Intended User Role:Elementary-Level Educator, High-School Educator, Middle-Level Educator
Educational Issues:Inquiry learning, Professional development, Teacher content knowledge


Resource Format:
Size: KB
Installation Remarks:

National Standards Correlation

This resource has 15 correlations with the National Standards.  

This resource has 15 correlations with the National Standards.  

  • Life Science
    • Structure and function in living systems
      • Important levels of organization for structure and function include cells, organs, tissues, organ systems, whole organisms, and ecosystems (5-8)
      • Cells carry on the many functions needed to sustain life. They grow and divide, thereby producing more cells. (5-8)
      • This requires that cells take in nutrients, which they use to provide energy for the work that cells do and to make the materials that a cell or an organism needs. (5-8)
      • Each type of cell, tissue, and organ has a distinct structure and set of functions that serve the organism as a whole. (5-8)
      • The human organism has systems for digestion, respiration, reproduction, circulation, excretion, movement, control, and coordination, and for protection from disease. These systems interact with one another. (5-8)
    • The cell
      • The process of photosynthesis provides a vital connection between the sun and the energy needs of living systems. (9-12)
      • Most cell functions involve chemical reactions. (9-12)
      • Food molecules taken into cells react to provide the chemical constituents needed to synthesize other molecules. (9-12)
      • Both breakdown and synthesis are made possible by a large set of protein catalysts, called enzymes. (9-12)
      • The breakdown of some of the food molecules enables the cell to store energy in specific chemicals that are used to carry out the many functions of the cell. (9-12)
    • Matter, energy, and organization in living systems
      • Energy stored in bonds between the atoms (chemical energy) can be used as sources of energy for life processes. (9-12)
      • The chemical bonds of food molecules contain energy. (9-12)
      • Energy is released when the bonds of food molecules are broken and new compounds with lower energy bonds are formed. (9-12)
  • Process Standards for Professional Development
    • Research-Based
      • Address teachers' needs as learners and build on their current knowledge of science content, teaching, and learning. (NSES)
    • Design
      • Introduce teachers to scientific literature, media, and technological resources that expand their science knowledge and their ability to access further knowledge. (NSES)

State Standards Correlation

Use the form below to view which of your state standards this resource addresses.

User Reviews

Organs and Systems Role in Nutrition
  Robin Willig (Rye Brook, NY) on April 5, 2015
  Good series of explanations to help get the big picture of how all the systems in your body work together to keep nutrition circulating in and waste circulating out.

Health 101
  Robin Willig (Rye Brook, NY) on April 4, 2015
  This science content is often associated with health class, which makes sense because it explain how you stay healthy by making good food choices.

I Love Science Objects!
  Naomi Beverly (Marietta, GA) on September 3, 2014
  I really enjoy Science Objects. In 1-3 hours, the Nutrition: What Happens to the Food I Eat? Science Object will help me re-learn, refresh, or learn for the first time some critical science concepts I will have to know to obtain my Science Educator credentials. I appreciate that I can complete them at my own pace, and that, if used as park of a SciPack, I have access to a content expert to go to for help. The NSTA Learning Center Science Objects are very beneficial! Not only will they enrich my teaching, the knowledge will enrich my life.

  Joe on July 20, 2012
  It contains great information!

Review of Nutrition (Sci-Object)
  Ronaldo Relador (Bowie, MD) on February 17, 2012
  This is one of the best lesson of life one could have in general. This specific learning experience arrayed the truths that govern one of the most important bases of life - nutrition. I really hope that there would be more lessons like these in the future.

Loved the videos
  Katherine Jezidija-Kendall on January 16, 2012
  I liked everything in this one...loved the video watching our food enter the mouth and then thru the digestive system.

Yummy Activity
  Jenny (Waterford, WI) on February 22, 2012
  My first round of learning center resources, I did this to review material that I am actually teaching to my seventh graders. It was great information, easy to navigate and understand and a great refresher.