Qualification - Associate Diploma In Food And Nutrition

Course CodeVRE003
Fee CodeAS
Duration (approx)1500 hours
QualificationAssociate Diploma
Food and Nutrition DIploma Qualification - Study by Distance Learning.

This course is a broad-scoped interdisciplinary course that covers a range of subjects relevant to food and nutrition.

This comprehensive course includes practical and theoretical components, and will provide the graduate with skills and knowledge in:
  • Nutrition
  • Health Science
  • Counselling
  • Food preparation
  • Fitness and Wellbeing
  • Business
  • Specialist Nutrition areas
There are a range of modules in the above areas that students can select as electives - giving the freedom to choose courses that most suit the student.


Core ModulesThese modules provide foundation knowledge for the Qualification - Associate Diploma In Food And Nutrition.
 Biochemistry I (Animal) BSC103
 Food & Beverage Management (Catering) BTR102
 Food Coaching VRE110
 Human Biology 1A (Anatomy and Physiology) BSC101
 Human Nutrition and Food 1 BRE102
 Research Project I BGN102
 Human Biology II (Muscles and Movement) BSC202
 Human Nutrition and Food II BRE202
 Research Project II BGN201
 Human Nutrition and Food III BRE302
 Sports Nutrition BRE303
Elective ModulesIn addition to the core modules, students study any 4 of the following 13 modules.
 Counselling Skills I BPS109
 Counselling Skills II BPS110
 Health and Wellbeing BRE101
 Starting A Small Business VBS101
 Bar Service VTR204
 Food Preparation & Cooking BRE212
 Refrigerating Farm Produce BAG225
 Research Project III BGN202
 Therapeutic Nutrition BRE211
 Food Technology and Processing BSS301
 Health Food Production BSS302
 Human Biology III (Cardio Respiratory Performance) BSC301
 Human Microbiome Management BSC311

Note that each module in the Qualification - Associate Diploma In Food And Nutrition is a short course in its own right, and may be studied separately.



The course is made up of the following 100 hour long modules:

1.      Nutrition I

There are nine lessons in this course, each requiring about 10 hours work by the student. Emphasis is placed on understanding the body, the food we eat & it's affects, our mental, emotional health (state of mind), and physical health.

The nine lessons are as follows:

  1. Introduction to Nutrition
  2. The Digestive System
  3. Absorption & Enzymes
  4. Energy Value and Foods
  5. Carbohydrates and Fats
  6. Proteins
  7. Vitamins and Minerals
  8. Water
  9. Nutrient Disorders

2.      Nutrition II

This course is divided into eight lessons as follows:.

  1. Cooking And Its Effect On Nutrition
  2. Food Processing And Its Effect On Nutrition
  3. Recommended Daily Intake Of Nutrients
  4. Vitamins
  5. Minerals
  6. Planning A Balanced Diet
  7. Assessing Nutritional Status & Needs
  8. Timing Of Meals & Needs For Special Groups

3.      Nutrition III

This course is divided into eight lessons as follows:.

  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

4.      Food and Beverage Management

  1. Human Nutrition
  2. Cooking
  3. Kitchen and Food Management
  4. Planning a menu
  5. Alcaholic Beverages
  6. Tea, Coffee and non alcoholic Beverages
  7. Scope & Nature of Catering Services
  8. Personnel Management, waiter/waitress skills, restaurant staffing, kitchen staff, etc.
  9. Managing Catering Servicing

5.      Human Biology 1A

There are 6 lessons as follows:

  1. Cells & Tissues - Explains the human body at a microscopic level, including the structure and function of cells, tissues and membranes.
  2. The Skeleton - Examines features of the human skeletal system.
  3. The Muscular System - Describes the human muscular system, in terms of structure and basic function.
  4. The Nervous System – Looks at the human nervous system, in terms of structure and basic functions.
  5. Digestion & Excretion - Explains different physiological systems of digestion and excretion in the body.
  6. Physiological Systems –  Focuses on the different physiological systems of the body.

6.      Human Biology II

There are 8 lessons as follows:

  1. How Nerves Work - how nerves cause reactions in the human body.
  2. Nerves & Motor Skills - how the nervous system affects motor skill performance
  3. Skeletal Muscle - function and structure of skeletal muscle in the human body
  4. Muscle Organisation - organisation of muscle tissue in the human body
  5. Muscular Movement - mechanics of muscular movement
  6. Muscular Development - development of muscular strength and muscular endurance.
  7. Muscle Flexibility - selecting muscular flexibility exercises
  8. Muscles & Posture - significance of muscles to posture and general well being.

7.      Human Biology III

There are 7 lessons as follows:

  1. The Science of Blood
  2. Blood Pressure
  3. Pulmonary Ventilation
  4. Gas Exchange & Transport
  5. Blood Flow & Gas Transport
  6. Cardio Respiratory Control
  7. Cardio Respiratory Disease

8.      Research Project I

9.      Research Project II

10.      Research Project III

11.      Biochemistry I (Animals)

There are 10 lessons as follows:

  1. Introduction to biochemistry
  2. Lipids and proteins
  3. Enzymes and hormones
  4. Nucleic acids
  5. Thermo-regulation
  6. Carbohydrate metabolism
  7. Absorption
  8. Acidity and alkalinity
  9. Chemical analysis
  10. Biochemical applications

12.      Sports Nutrition

There are 9 lessons as follows:

  1. Introduction to Human and Sports Nutrition
  2. Energy
  3. Energy in the Athlete’s Body
  4. The Training Diet
  5. The Competition Diet
  6. Fluids
  7. The Athlete’s Body Composition
  8. Weight Management
  9. Training for Size and the Use of Sports Supplements

13.      100 hours of industry meetings (eg. attending trade shows, conferences seminars, committee meetings etc)

14.     PLUS two other modules of the student’s choice such as counselling skills and managing a small business.



Knowledge about nutrition can be looked at in many different ways, and the focus in any consideration of human diet depends largely upon the context and situation. Certain foods or nutrients may be deficient in the diets of particular groups of people, such as elderly widowers, teenage girls or even particular cultural groups. These deficiencies must be addressed when considering such groups. Other foods might be eaten excessively in some situations, and may need to be reduced significantly in the diet. All food types should normally be eaten by all people to ensure a balanced diet, though adjustments can be made to compensate for the lack of certain foods that make up a typical western diet, such as meat or dairy products. In some cultures, for instance, milk products are rarely eaten, if at all, and calcium is derived from other calcium-rich foods. Vegetarians and vegans can also obtain essential nutrients such as complete proteins from vegetables, pulses and grains rather than from meat. Overall, though, a varied diet is much more beneficial than a diet heavy in one or more kinds of food. And, as the saying goes, moderation is the best approach.

The food and drink that we consume each day have a direct bearing on our state of health. It is important to vary our intake of foods so that we are deriving the full range of nutrients and other substances that the body needs. Too much of one or two food types, even healthy foods, is not recommended for long-term health. In addition to being more healthful, a varied diet is also a lot more interesting for the taste buds. A balanced and adequate diet is essential to our wellbeing. The extra time and thought needed to prepare good quality meals is easily rewarded with increased stamina and alertness, better resistance to illness, and clear and healthy skin, eyes and hair. However, to maximize the health benefits of what we eat, we need to understand some basic nutrition requirements and principles, which are discussed below.


Quality of Ingredients

Fresh food is superior to processed and packaged food because in the processing, some nutrients are lost, and often, less desirable ingredients such as sugars, fats, and chemical additives are added. Fruit, vegetables, bread, meat and dairy products should ideally be consumed when fresh. Also pay attention to the quality of the food. Fruits and vegetables are freshest and most nutritious when in season and locally grown, as they can be picked later in the ripening stage, whereas produce that is transported large distances is usually picked well before it is ripe, as it travels better and lasts longer. Look for signs of quality: good colouring; aroma; firmness, crispness or softness, as appropriate; no signs of disease.

Price is not always an indicator of quality, but in general, you get what you pay for with foods, and cheaper produce carried by one shop might be inferior in nutritional value than slightly more expensive produce in a neighbouring shop. Good chefs choose their produce very carefully because they know that quality ingredients result in tastier, more nutritious, and appealing dishes. Good produce might cost more, but it will be higher in nutritional value. Some people spend more to buy organic produce. While there has been some research into the advantages of organic food over conventionally grown food, it is still not clear if there is a significant difference in overall nutritional value. However, the flavour of organic produce is usually reported to be better, and the possibility of chemical contamination is also greatly reduced.

Range of Ingredients

No one food or food group can supply us with everything that we need for good health. An important principle of nutrition is to eat a wide variety of foods daily. This gives our body the best chance of obtaining all the nutrients required. A diet dominated by bread will provide plenty of starch and other carbohydrates, but will be deficient in some vitamins, minerals and protein. A diet heavy in meat will supply lots of protein, but again will be deficient in some nutrients and can also over tax parts of the system. On the other hand, eating mainly vegetables and fruit may provide adequate levels of vitamins, but energy from carbohydrates and strength from proteins may be insufficient.

When we consider specific vitamins, minerals and other elements of the diet, we can see more clearly that we need a range of foods in our diet to obtain all the nutrients we need for optimum health. For example, dietary zinc can be easily obtained from red meats and some shellfish, but vegetables are a poor source of zinc. For cobalt and molybdenum, it is the other way around: leafy greens have a high concentration, while meats do not. Vitamin and mineral supplements are not a substitute for a balanced, varied diet. Vitamins and minerals are not absorbed beyond the body’s needs, and the body will either eliminate what it does not use or store it, which can result in toxicity. Also, it is difficult to keep track of every vitamin, mineral, or nutrient that you need and eat. The simplest way to get what you need is to eat lots of different foods. It is also more appealing from a culinary point of view.

Cooking Methods Used

Cooking food is useful because it softens hard ingredients, increases the availability of some nutrients (eg. carotene), releases and mixes flavours, and makes foods (some of which are inedible when raw) palatable. While proper cooking may slightly reduce the nutritional value of food, over-cooking should definitely be avoided. In general, the longer the cooking time, the greater the nutrient loss. Boiling can leach (cause loss of) out large amount of nutrients, although in the case of soups and stews this is not a problem because the liquid is consumed. Cook rice, lentils, etc. by the absorption method, rather than by boiling in water and then draining off the nutrient-rich excess water. Frying, grilling, baking and barbecuing can convert some materials into carcinogens (cancer-causing substances) if the ingredients are burnt, although the quantities present are usually minute. With over cooking, the chemicals in foods can sometimes change from useful to detrimental chemicals. It is important to include raw foods in the diet, such as fruits, vegetables and nuts. A platter of vegetable sticks and a couple of dips is a simple and healthy snack or meal.

Excessive use of fats and oils can occur in frying and baking. Instead, try dry frying, grilling or simply using a smaller amount of fat or oil. To improve taste, use herbs and spices in preference to salt.

The cooking equipment can also affect food. Glass, stainless steel or enamel pots and pans should be used. Copper can interfere with the vitamins in food. The use of aluminium pots and pans is said to increase the amount of aluminium entering the body, which could lead to health problems such as muscle weakness, bone problems and Alzheimer's disease. Cooking with acidic foods in aluminium (eg. vinegar, tomatoes, citrus fruits) can make the situation worse.


After food is prepared, its nutritional value for the body can be affected by the way the food is eaten, and the circumstances in which the meal occurs. Chewing is the first stage in the digestion of food. Without going overboard, food should be chewed adequately to reduce the particle size, add moisture for easier swallowing, and to add a number of enzymes that will breakdown starches into sugars. Saliva, secreted from six glands within the mouth, contains the water and enzymes necessary for this stage of digestion. Once the food has been mashed and mixed with saliva, swallowing occurs. This involves the combined action of muscles in the mouth, tongue and throat pushing the bolus of food down into the pharynx. As the food goes down, the epiglottis stops it from entering the wind-pipe (larynx). It then passes through the oesophagus and into the stomach.

A relaxed state of mind and body is necessary for complete digestion. When you eat 'on the run', your mental energy is not on the meal but on other things, and your physical energy is being used to keep your body and mind running, and diverted from the important processes of digestion. Stress and tension can lead to poor digestion through poor chewing, unbalanced stomach acid release and bowel blockages.

What's Different About this Diploma?
  • Options to choose electives that you don't find in similar diplomas elsewhere.
  • A longer, more in depth diploma than what is offered at many other colleges (Compare the duration -1500 hours). Study more, learn more, go further in your career or business.
  • A stronger focus on learning (some colleges focus more on assessment than we do -but we believe that what you learn is what makes the difference)
  • Exceptional tutors...compare the qualifications and experience of our staff (see staff profiles at ... http://www.acsedu.com/about-us/our-staff.aspx)  ....after all, it doesn't make sense to choose where to study if you don't first know who will be teaching you.

Check out our eBooks

It's Easy to Enrol

Select a Learning Method


$3,806.00Payment plans available.

Courses can be started at any time from anywhere in the world!

Need Help?

Take advantage of our personalised, expert course counselling service to ensure you're making the best course choices for your situation.