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Increasing knowledge on the use of stable isotope techniques for the assessment of body composition in Latin America and the Caribbean

Participants at the training course

A Regional Training Course on the Use of Stable Isotope Techniques for the Assessment of Body Composition and Energy Expenditure and on Physical Performance Tests took place at the Research Center for Food and Development in Hermosillo, Sonora, Mexico from 21-24 October 2014.

The training course is part of project RLA/6/073, "Improving the Quality of Life of Older People through Early Diagnosis of Sarcopenia".

Twenty-five enthusiastic professionals from 12 Member States in the Latin American and Caribbean region took part in the course. The main objective of the course was to provide knowledge and training on standard operating procedures for the assessment of body composition, focusing on stable isotope techniques (deuterium dilution) to measure fat-free mass, as an estimate of skeletal muscle mass. Other important issues discussed included the diagnosis of sarcopenia and the assessment of physical performance and functionality in older people by assessment of handgrip strength, walking speed, 6-minute walking test and the Timed Up and Go test, as well as the evaluation of independence in activities of daily living, and screening for depression and cognitive impairment.

All participants were trained to assess body composition by anthropometry and bioimpedance analysis, in addition to the isotopic techniques. Other topics during the week included the measurement of total daily energy expenditure by the doubly labelled water method, as a quantitative measure of quality of life in older people.  

The lecturers were Dr. Heliodoro Aleman Mateo from Mexico and Dr. Eduardo Ferriolli from Brazil, and the course too place with the assistance of local facilitators Mr. Jose Antonio Ponce, Mrs. Liliana Macias and Mrs. Ana Cristina Gallegos.

The technical cooperation project RLA/6/073 began in January 2014 and includes twelve Member States from Latin America and the Caribbean region: Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Costa Rica, Cuba, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Panama, Paraguay, Peru and Uruguay.   


Last update: 26 Jul 2017

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