Human Nutrition III (Disease & Nutrition)

Course CodeBRE302
Fee CodeS2
Duration (approx)100 hours
QualificationStatement of Attainment


Some people seem to be able to eat anything, without suffering any signs of ill health. Others suffer!

The healthy body has a remarkable ability to process and eliminate unwanted chemicals. Very few people, however, are in such a good state of health; and even those who are, are unlikely to continue disposing of unwelcome chemical compounds year after year for their entire lifespan. Sooner or later their ability to tolerate undesirable foods will decrease, and problems will develop.

Lesson Structure

There are 8 lessons in this course:

  1. Problems With Eating
  2. Dental Problems
  3. Fibre and Bowel Diseases
  4. Different Ways of Eating
  5. Food Toxicity A
  6. Food Toxicity B
  7. Detoxification/Body Cleansing
  8. Consulting/Giving Advice


  • Explain different food related health problems.
  • Determine the effect which different physical methods of food intake, can have upon health, including time and order of eating, and chewing.
  • Manage food sensitivity problems.
  • Implement procedures to avoid food poisoning.
  • List food related factors which can have a negative influence on health.
  • Distinguish between characteristics of the diets of two healthy people with diets of unhealthy people, studied by the learner.
  • Differentiate between dietary and other affects, on the health of a specific individual.
  • Explain the significance of cholesterol to health of a specific demographic group.
  • Explain the significance of diet to cancer in a specified demographic group.
  • Compare differences in physiological responses to different patterns of eating, including: *The order in which different types of food are eaten; * The time of day when different types of food are eaten; *The degree to which different types of foods are chewed; *The speed of swallowing; *The amount of time between eating different food types.
  • Explain food combining principles, in a diet designed to optimise food combining principles.
  • Plan a dietary timetable which optimises the ability of a typical person on a specified budget, to digest and assimilate food.
  • Formulate a nutritionally balanced vegetarian diet.
  • Formulate a diet compatible with a person's level of physical activity.
  • Manage fibre in the diet.
  • Manage diet to optimise dental health.
  • Recommend a safe method of detoxification.
  • Recommend a nutritional program to a client in a proper and responsible manner.

What You Will Do

  • Distinguish between food sensitivity and toxicity in two different case studies.
  • Distinguish between chemical and pathological toxicity, in four different case studies.
  • List foods commonly associated with sensitivity problems.
  • List foods commonly associated with toxicity problems.
  • Explain problems associated with common food sensitivity and toxicity including: -Gluten Sugar -Salt -Yeast -MSG.
  • Develop a checklist of body reactions which may occur, in response to food sensitivity or toxicity, as a tool for diagnosing possible causes.
  • Describe different scientific procedures used to test for food sensitivities and toxicities.
  • Explain the role of histamines, anti histamines and steroids in human toxicology.
  • Explain first aid treatments for people suspected to be suffering from different food sensitivity or toxicity problems.
  • Explain a procedure used by a health practitioner, to treat someone affected by a specified type of food poisoning.
  • Determine guidelines to minimise food toxicity problems in a visited restaurant.
  • List factors which can cause food poisoning.
  • Explain different pathological sources of serious food poisoning; including identification, physiological effects and control.
  • Explain chemical poisoning risks associated with the use of chemicals to control pathological poisoning risks.
  • Explain food storage and preparation techniques essential to minimising food poisoning.
  • Develop guidelines to minimise food poisoning your own kitchen, based upon your normal dietary requirements.
  • Develop guidelines to minimise food toxicity problems in a restaurant.
  • Explain procedures practiced by a visited food manufacturer, to control food sensitivity and toxicity problems with their product.
  • Compare in a chart or table, three different styles of vegetarianism.
  • Explain different specified risks associated with a vegetarian diet.
  • List alternative sources for different components of foods normally derived from animal products, including: *Tryptophan *Methionine *Valine *Threonine *Phenylalanine *Leucine *Isoleucine *Lysine.
  • Formulate a balanced vegetarian diet, for a specified individual.
  • Explain the relationship between different types of food and exercise.
  • Explain the management of diet for a specified situation, before, during and after activity.
  • Explain how diet can effect performance of different specified types of exercises.
  • Explain the role of fibre in the digestive system, of a specified demographic group.
  • Explain possible implications of inadequate fibre in the diet, for different specified demographic groups.
  • Compare relative value of the fibre content of dfferent foods.
  • Explain inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), in a specified case study.
  • Compare fibre content in the diets of different people interviewed.
  • Recommend modifications to the fibre intake people interviewed.
  • Exlain the biology of the teeth, including anatomy and physiology.
  • Explain the effect of five different foods on the teeth and gums.
  • Describe dental problems influenced by diet.
  • Develop guidelines for healthy dental hygiene procedures, including both dietary and other practices.
  • List factors which affect accumulation of toxins in the body.
  • Explain different benefits of detoxification, for three different demographic groups.
  • Explain different techniques of accelerating elimination of toxins from the body -Heat (eg. Sauna) -Fasting -Diet Modification -Antioxidants -Exercise -Drugs and Herbs - Disease Stress control.
  • Explain the dangers of excessive detoxification, for different demographic groups.
  • Evaluate appropriate detoxification needs for an specified individual.
  • Recommend a detoxification program based upon a specified evaluation.
  • Explain legal risks involved in giving nutritional advice to a client.
  • Explain the moral responsibilities involved in providing nutritional advice.
  • Determine ways in which specific examples of nutritional advice may be misinterpreted.
  • Develop guidelines for a system to ensure nutritional advice is followed by clients as intended, including provision for monitoring.
  • Demonstrate a consultation with a client, real or hypothetical, presenting a nutritional program, designed for that client.

What We Eat Can Affect Virtually Every Part of our Body
The relationship between food intake and health is well documented; and more is being discovered continually.  Not only does what we eat impact our health, but also how we eat, how much we eat, and how we prepare the food. Not everyone reacts the same way to foods either. Genetics, general fitness, and other factors are also considerations.
Food can either help or hinder medical conditions as well as general heaqlth and fitness.
Just consider a few common issues:
Diabetes is a disorder of metabolism—the way the body uses digested food for growth and energy. The disease affects the functioning of the pancreas. In patients with diabetes either the pancreas fails to make enough insulin to bring down blood sugar levels or the body is unable to use insulin as well as it should gain causing blood sugar levels to rise.
Diabetes affects at hundreds of millions of people worldwide, a figure which is likely to have doubled by the year 2030. Dietary advice for diabetes aims to improve blood sugar control, decrease the risk of heart disease, reduce blood pressure, improve blood cholesterol levels, reduce obesity and delay long term conditions. Current dietary guidelines suggest that people with diabetes should follow a diet where 50% of energy they consume comes from carbohydrate (starches and sugars) with only 10% of total being simple sugars (sucrose). 35% of total energy should come from fats, particularly from monounsaturated fats and 15% of total energy should come from protein. 
Heart Problems
The heart is the strongest muscle in the body and together with the circulatory system makes up the body’s cardiovascular system, the system responsible for carrying blood (carrying oxygen and nutrients etc) to all parts of the body.  Maintaining a healthy heart is of crucial importance as cardiovascular disease (heart disease and stroke) is the leading cause of death and disability in the world. Whilst cardiovascular disease risks increase with age and can have a genetic cause, risks increase in smokers as well as in people who are physically inactive or follow an unhealthy diet so these factors should be addressed.  
Diet and lifestyle recommendations to reduce your risk of heart disease include:
  • Limiting your energy intake from fats and in particular shifting fat consumption away from saturated fats and trans fatty acids to polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats 
  • Increasing your intake of omega-3 fatty acids from fish oil or plant sources.
  • Consuming a diet high in fruits and vegetables, nuts and wholegrains
  • Reducing your intake of salt and salty foods which can increase blood pressure.
  • Reducing your weight if overweight 
  • Taking at least 30 minutes of regular physical activity a day.
  • Avoiding smoking. 
Diet, the Brain and Mental Health
There is a growing amount of evidence to suggest that diets can affect mental health and linking diet to a number of mental health conditions. The following dietary advice has in particular been linked to improved mental health.
  • Following a balanced diet e.g. by increasing fruit and vegetable consumption and reducing intakes of sugars and fats
  • Consuming regular meals to maintain blood sugar levels, this is in contrast to missing meals e.g. breakfast which reduces blood sugar levels which is associated with irritability, low mood and fatigue.
  • Reducing intakes of sugary foods which cause a rapid rise and drop in blood sugar levels. This is associated with tiredness and reduced mood as blood sugar levels drop.
  • Including a source of protein at each meal. This advice relates to the fact that protein contains the amino acid tryptophan which helps to improve mood.
  • Drink sufficient fluids as dehydration has been linked to irritability and loss of concentration 
In addition to the dietary principles mentioned above, people with diabetes are also more likely to develop other medical conditions which have their own dietary requirements such as diabetes, heart problems and obesity. These conditions are more common in patients with mental illness due to factors such as the effect of anti psychotic medication on causing weight gain, social factors such as the link between low income and a poor diet and genetic links between mental health and other conditions.
Asthma is a condition that affects the respiratory system making it difficult to breath. It may be triggered by a range of factors such as animal hair, pollen and dust mites. Symptoms may also be triggered by nutritional factors such as food additives and chemicals or by specific foods in the diet. These factors can be identified through use of an elimination diet.
The most common foods thought to provoke asthma attacks are eggs, nuts, milk, fish, chocolate and sulphites used as a preservative in many foods and drinks. Some research shows that in addition to acting as an allergen, diet may also affect asthma by helping to control the severity of an asthma attack. For example some Nutritionists advise people with asthma to treat an attack with spicy foods like chili, mustard and garlic. The basis for this advice is that hot foods stimulate nerves resulting in the secretion a watery fluid which helps to thin down mucus and ease breathing difficulties. In addition some clinical trials have shown that caffeine can relieve the symptoms of asthma by helping to open up airways and reduce adverse symptoms such as wheezing, coughing and breathlessness.


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