Qualification - Foundation Diploma In Natural Health

Course CodeBSC001
Fee CodeFD
Duration (approx)1000 hours
QualificationFoundation Diploma

An excellent course for people looking to enter into a career in Natural Therapies, Health Support Services or Alternative and Complementary Medicine.

Study this alone, or as a foundation course for higher qualifications. Your qualification will be internationally accredited through the IARC.

You also have the option of being awarded the Foundation Diploma through our UK school, a college that has also been assessed and approved for training in natural therapies and nutrition by the Complimentary Medicine Association (UK). 

The Foundation Diploma might also be used to gain significant credits for the Pre Medical Diploma offered by Warnborough College in the UK and Ireland (which has been used in the past to gain entry to medical degrees in a number of overseas countries).


Duration: 1000 hours

Course Structure
The Foundation Diploma consists of 10 modules:
  1. Anatomy & Physiology I
  2. Nutrition I
  3. Nutrition II
  4. Nutrition III
  5. Biochemistry I
  6. Biochemistry II
  7. Biochemistry III
  8. Biology (Cell Biology)
  9. Introduction to Psychology
  10. Counselling Skills I

Expanded Course Outlines:


Human Anatomy and Physiology I

This subject must be undertaken before any of the other modules. The subject provides a solid foundation for the rest of your studies. It contains 6 lessons as outlined below:

  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.


Nutrition I

There are nine lessons in this course as follows:

  1. Introduction to Nutrition - Explain the role of different food types in human health
  2. The Digestive System - Understand and explain the anatomy of digestion
  3. Absorption & Enzymes - To understand and explain the physiology of digestive processes
  4. Energy Value and Foods - Understanding the science of nutrition
  5. Carbohydrates and Fats - Recommend appropriate carbohydrate intake and recommend appropriate fat intake for a specific person
  6. Proteins - Recommend appropriate protein intake
  7. Vitamins and Minerals - Recommend appropriate intake of vitamins and minerals
  8. Water - Recommend appropriate water intake in different situations
  9. Nutrient Disorders - Recognise symptoms of the major nutrient disorders


Nutrition II

There are 8 lessons in this course as follows:

  1. Cooking and its Effect on Nutrition - Determine the appropriate food preparation for different foods, in relation to its value for human health
  2. Food Processing and its Effect on Nutrition - Explain the characteristics of food processing techniques and their implications for human health
  3. Recommended Daily Intake of Nutrients - Understand the minimum and maximum safe intake for macronutrients, vitamins and minerals
  4. Vitamins - Manage dietary intake of more significant vitamins including fat soluble, B and C complex vitamins for good health
  5. Minerals - Manage dietary requirements of significant minerals including calcium & iron for good health
  6. Planning a Balanced Diet - Plan in detail, an appropriate seven day diet plan, for an "average" adult
  7. Assessing Nutritional Status & Needs - Determine dietary needs of different individuals and subpopulations
  8. Diet Planning for Special Needs - Plan diets for specific needs for people at different stages of life


Nutrition III

There are eight lessons in this course as follows:

  1. Nutrient Imbalance and Disease - Explain different food related health problems
  2. Dental Problems - Manage diet to optimise dental health
  3. Fibre and Bowel Diseases - Understand the role of dietary fibre in the diet and how it relates to bowel diseases
  4. Different Ways of Eating - Determine the effect which different physical methods of food intake, can have upon health, including the time and order of eating, and chewing
  5. Food Toxicity: Sensitivity - Manage food sensitivity problems
  6. Food Toxicity: Toxicity - Implement procedures to know and avoid food poisoning
  7. Detoxification/Body Cleansing - Understand detoxification; methods, purpose and efficacy
  8. Consulting/Giving Advice - Recommend a nutritional program to a client in a proper and responsible manner


Biochemistry I

There are ten lessons in this course as follows:

  1. Introduction to biochemistry - Identify characteristics of common chemical compounds important in animal and human biochemistry
  2. Lipids and proteins - Explain the characteristics of major biochemical groups including carbohydrates, lipids and proteins
  3. Enzymes and hormones - Explain the characteristics of chemicals which control biological processes in animals and humans, including enzymes and hormones
  4. Nucleic acids - Explain the role of nucleic acids in the biology of animals and humans
  5. Thermo-regulation - Explain the role of thermo-regulation in animals and humans
  6. Carbohydrate metabolism - Explain the role of carbohydrate metabolism in animals and humans
  7. Absorption - Explain processes of digestion & absorption in animals and humans
  8. Acidity and alkalinity - Identify the characteristics of acidity and alkalinity in relation to animals and humans
  9. Chemical analysis - Develop simple chemical analysis skills relevant to testing animals and humans
  10. Biochemical applications - Identify applications and uses for biochemical processes and products


Biochemistry II

There are nine lessons in this course as follows:

  1. Introduction to Biochemical Molecules - Explain the principles and practice of biochemistry. Explain the characteristics of biochemical molecules and distinguish between different groups of biochemical molecules
  2. Amino Acids - Explain the structural characteristics and other properties that differentiate amino acids
  3. Structure of Proteins - Explain the structure of proteins
  4. Protein Dynamics - To describe common protein dynamics including folding, structural evolution and haemoglobin function
  5. Sugars and Polysaccharides - Describe the structure and dynamics of different types of saccharides and polysaccharides
  6. Lipids (Fats) and Membranes - To explain the composition and structure of both lipids and membranes
  7. Enzymes, Vitamins and Hormones - To describe the structure and dynamics of different types of enzymes, vitamins and hormones
  8. DNA and RNA - To describe the structure and function of different types of nucleic acids including DNA and RNA
  9. Laboratory Techniques - To become familiar with some of the basic laboratory techniques used in biochemistry and to appreciate the importance of safety in the laboratory


Biochemistry III

There are ten lessons in this course as follows:

  1. Introduction - Explain the interaction between the various biochemical processes within the animal cell
  2. Glycolysis and Glycogen Metabolism - Explain the processes of glycolysis and glycogen metabolism
  3. Movement through Membranes - Understand the transport mechanism of bio-chemicals through animal membranes
  4. Electron Transport and Oxidative Phosphorylation - Explain the processes of electron transfer and oxidative phosphorylation, and their importance to energy regulation in animals
  5. Sugar and Polysaccharide Metabolism - Explain the metabolism of carbohydrates
  6. Lipid Metabolism - Explain the metabolism of lipids
  7. Amino Acid Metabolism - Explain the metabolism of amino acids
  8. Nucleotide Metabolism - Explain biochemical nucleotide metabolism
  9. Enzyme Activity - Explain enzyme reactions and catalysis in biochemistry
  10. Other Processes - Explain other biochemical processes including biochemical communication through hormones and neurotransmission



Cell Biology

There are ten lessons in this course as follows:

  1. Introduction to Cells - Review basic cell structure and discuss the scope and nature of cell biology
  2. Chemical Composition - Describe the chemical components and processes of cells
  3. Chemical Processes - Describe the storage of genetic information within cells and how this information is passed on to the next generation
  4. Genetic Information - Describe key concepts in molecular biology
  5. Membranes - Discuss membrane structure and transport across cell membranes
  6. Nucleus - Discuss protein structure and function
  7. Protein Structure and Function in the Cell - Describe and discuss protein synthesis
  8. Bioenergetics - Describe the significant processes involved in transfer and storage of energy in a cell
  9. Cell Signaling/Communication - Describe the significant processes that occur in cell communication and intracellular transport
  10. The Cell Cycle and Tissue Formation - Describe the life cycle of cells and how they combine to create different types of tissues


Introduction to Psychology

There are seven lesson in this course as follows:

  1. The nature and scope of Psychology - Define psychology and explain basic theoretical approaches
  2. Neurological basis of behaviour - Explain characteristics of the neurological basis of behaviour
  3. Environmental effects on behaviour - Identify different kinds of environmental influences on learned behaviour
  4. Consciousness and perception - Explain the differences between consciousness and perception
  5. Personality - Explain the effect of personality on behaviour
  6. Psychological development - Explain psychological development
  7. Needs, drives and motivation - To understand and be able to apply different techniques to motivate people


Counselling Skills I

This course has eight lessons as follows:

  1. Learning Specific Skills - To be aware of various methods of learning, and identify essential micro-skills
  2. Listening and Bonding - To introduce the student to the skills of commencing the counselling process, helping their client to unwind, and making use of the skills of listening and bonding
  3. Reflection - To convey to the counsellor an understanding of the notion of reflection of content, feeling, and both content and feeling, and its appropriateness to the counselling process
  4. Questioning - To introduce the student to different questioning techniques and their usefulness in the counselling process
  5. Interview Techniques - To describe and provide understanding of various micro-skills including: summarising, confrontation and reframing
  6. Changing Beliefs and Normalising - To understand the negative impact of self-destructive beliefs and to appreciate the value of normalising in the counselling process
  7. Finding Solutions - To enable the student to understand how a client can make choices, overcome psychological blocks and facilitate actions
  8. Ending the Counselling - To familiarize the student with effective ways to close the counselling session, arranging further meetings and overcoming dependency


Sample Course Notes

Vitamins are complex organic substances, which are essential for growth, metabolic functioning, and good health. For the most part, vitamins are not produced by the body, and must be ingested through the diet (with the exception of Vitamin D, which can be produced in the body from sunlight). Most of our vitamins are gained from eating plants. The presence of vitamins in plants is dependent to some extent on the overall health and vigour of the plant, the plant variety and the conditions under which the plant is grown. By the time the produce is ready for consumption, the amount of vitamins will depend on its freshness, storage, processing and preparation. 

Minerals are inorganic (containing no carbon) chemical elements which are required for regulation of the body's metabolism and formation of the body's structure. They play an important role in the health of teeth, bones, hair, blood, skin and connective tissue. Minerals are also an important part of the enzymes, vitamins and hormones which are involved in many chemical processes in the body. Minerals must be supplied by the diet, as they cannot be synthesised by the body. Each mineral has specific functions. To be utilised, other mineral co-factors must also be present in the body.

The eight major essential minerals are Sodium, Potassium, Calcium, Magnesium, Iron, Phosphorus, Sulphur and Chlorine. Recommended daily intake for minerals is usually quite low. For example, magnesium requirements are about 320 milligrams for men and 270 milligrams for women. Minor or trace elements have recently been recognised as also being essential to good health, in very small quantities though. The more important ones are Copper, Zinc, Iodine, Fluorine, Chromium, Manganese, Selenium and Cobalt.

A number of mineral deficiencies are common in Western diets. Iron, calcium and zinc are probably the most significant, with the first two being more common in women. Mineral deficiencies are largely caused by either an inadequate intake of a particular mineral, or an inadequate intake of vitamins and minerals that improve the absorption of the mineral. For example, Vitamin C helps absorption of iron, so even if someone has an adequate intake of iron, if they have inadequate intake of vitamin C they still may develop an iron deficiency. Mineral deficiencies are especially prevalent in the SAD diet (Standard American Diet), and vegetarian or vegan diets (where care isn’t taken to ensure an adequate consumption of minerals). Too much of any mineral can be toxic. Sources of overdose can be over-use of mineral supplements (eg. pills) or from environmental pollution. This can be a problem with the trace elements because they are usually only present in minute amounts.

The Recommended Daily Allowance, known as RDA, or Recommended Daily Intakes (RDI) have been developed to provide suggestions about how much of each nutrient should be consumed per day to stay healthy. This may differ slightly from country to country, so conduct an internet search for the appropriate recommendations for your country. are recommendations for nutrients. The recommended amounts are different for children, adults, males, and females.

The Dietary Reference Intake, known as DRI, is an average that includes the following other nutrient measures: RDA, Adequate Intakes, known as AI, Estimated Average Intakes, known as EAR and Tolerable Upper Intakes, known as UL.

DRI is slowly becoming the more accepted form for nutrient recommendations. For some nutrients they are lower, for others they are higher. Experts expect that DRI will take the place of the RDA in time


There are two types of vitamins, water soluble and fat soluble. A general rule is that water soluble vitamins are not stored in the body, so a daily intake is needed. On the contrary, fat soluble vitamins (vitamins A, D, E, K), are stored in the body so care should be taken to avoid high doses of fat soluble vitamins for long periods, as this can lead to excess accumulation and toxicity. Because of this, deficiencies are more common in water soluble vitamins than fat soluble vitamins, especially where the water soluble vitamins are required in high doses (for example vitamin C).

VITAMIN B1 (Thiamine)

Dietary thiamine is combined into a complex called thiamine pyrophosphate (TPP). TPP is an enzyme that is vital for the conversion of carbohydrates into energy. It is water soluble; therefore a very small amount is found in the body, with excess being eliminated in urine. Toxicity is therefore very rare. It is important to note that while small amounts of thiamine are found in complexes in the body fluids, it cannot be stored long term or for later use. It is rapidly destroyed by heat.

Food Sources

Wheat germ, sunflower seeds, whole grains and all nuts. Beans and peas. Oatmeal, oranges, raisins, asparagus, eggs, liver, lean meats and green leafy vegetables.

Plant sources: bladder wrack seaweed, dulse, fenugreek, kelp, okra.

Significance to Body

Part of a coenzyme which participates in carbohydrate metabolism, therefore important in the energy conversion from food. It also keeps the brain and heart healthy. It is important in the oxidation of alcohol, therefore in its use or elimination from the body.




Decreased appetite, gastrointestinal upset, cramping in calf muscles, numbness in feet, enlarged heart, beriberi, tachycardia.

Recommended Daily Allowance: 1.5 milligrams. A good varied diet provides most of the daily requirements.

Vitamin B1 (thiamine or aneurin) is necessary for:

a) Growth

b) Prevention of a certain type of neuritis

c) The oxidative processes which the body uses to obtain energy from carbohydrate as it forms part of one of the enzymes.

Beri-Beri is the deficiency disease associated with vitamin B1.

Because vitamin B1 is a catalyst for the release of energy, the body’s requirement for this vitamin is proportional to the number of calories provided by nutrients other than fat. 0.06 mg of Thiamine is needed for every 100 cals from carbohydrate or protein; so foods providing more than 0.06 mg thiamine for each 100 cals are a real source of vitamin B1 in the diet. (0.06 mg per 1000 non fat cals or 0.4 mg per 1000 total calories). 

Sources (these are numerous, but few are rich sources):

           Yeast extract (eg. Marmite or Vegemite)

           Pork, bacon


           Peas, lentils, broad beans


           Cornflakes (fortified).

All flour except wholemeal is fortified with thiamine to at least 0.24 mg per 100 gm, equivalent to 0.7 mg per 1000 Cals. Bread, flour, potatoes, carrots, cabbage and milk make useful contributions to diet. Thiamine is synthesised by bacteria in the large intestine, but this is not a reliable source because the bacteria may be inactivated by drugs, or removed by purgatives, diarrhoea, etc.

Vitamin B1 is water soluble and readily lost into washing and cooking waters. It is unstable at high temperatures, and thus may be lost in some cooking processes. It is destroyed by alkalis (e.g. baking powder, bicarbonate of soda) and sulphites. The average loss of thiamine in cooking of an ordinary diet is likely to be about 25%. Modern processes of freezing, canning and dehydration of foods result in smaller losses. Thiamine cannot be stored in the body and different individuals require and absorb different amounts. Alcohol destroys the B vitamins in general, and adolescents, pregnant women, vegetarians and those people who are under stress, ill or who smoke are particularly at risk.

VITAMIN B2 (Riboflavin)

Chemically similar to ribose sugar. It is required for the efficient conversion of food into energy, and many other functions in the body, including immune system support. It is rapidly broken down by UV and visible light, and by alkalis.

Food sources

Meat, poultry, fish, milk, legumes, liver, egg white, yeast.

Plant sources: bladder wrack seaweed, dulse, fenugreek, kelp, saffron.

Significance to Body

Riboflavin is part of two enzymes, FMN and FAD, which help with producing energy from the carbohydrates and fats in food. They also provide support for the immune system and keep red blood cells healthy.




It is one of the more common vitamin deficiencies. Symptoms include cracking of lips at corners, lips and tongue can become shiny and purple-red, dermatitis, light sensitivity, blurred vision.

Recommended Daily Allowance: 1.1 mg in women, 1.3 mg in men (adults). Under 2 mg per day is enough, or 0.6 mg per 1000 Calories ingested.

VITAMIN B2 (Riboflavin) is necessary for:

a) The release of energy from food

b) Growth

c) Good digestion

Minor signs of deficiency are common in many parts of the world, but they do not often progress to serious illness.


            Milk                           Beef                      Liver

            Cheese                    Eggs                        Cornflakes      

It is present in beer, but relatively lacking in cereals (not added to low extract flour).

Riboflavin may be synthesised in the large intestine.

Vitamin B2, is less soluble in water than vitamin B1, but there still may be 15-20% loss into cooking water. It is fairly stable to heat, but sensitive to light. If milk is exposed to sunlight, larger losses occur. It is destroyed by alkalis. A well balanced diet containing a satisfactory supply of other necessary nutrients will generally provide sufficient riboflavin. Recommended intake is 1.7 mg daily for an adult man and 1.3 mg for an adult woman. More is required during pregnancy and lactation.


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