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Duration (approx) 100 hours
Qualification Statement of Attainment

Gain an understanding of the elements of our diet and the nutrients required by our bodies

  • Learn about human nutrition - the sources and interactions of nutrition in our dietThis course provides an understanding of the sources, actions, and interactions of nutrients from the food that we consume. 
  • Looking at the balance of the nutrients in foods and what makes up a balanced diet. 
  • An excellent course for anyone interested in nutrition and health for themselves or to help or counsel others.
  • A stand alone program or combine with Human Nutrition II & III to round out your nutrition knowledge.




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Learn about the food and nutrition requirements of our bodies

  • Learn about the elements of a good dietAn excellent introduction to human nutrition.

  • Learn about eating and the different types of food that contribute to a healthy diet.

  • Learn about good nutrition, the digestive system, essential minerals, proteins and vitamins.

  • Learn about different nutrient disorders.

  • Course Duration: 100 hours of self-paced study.  Start the course at any time and study when and where you want.


  • You want to work or already work in the Food or Health industry
  • Make better food choices for yourself or your family
  • A stand alone program or take the first step toward a Certificate or Diploma
  • Support others toward better health through improved Nutrition



There are 9 lessons in this course:

1. Introduction to Nutrition

  • Important factors in nutrition.

  • Ingredients and cooking methods.

  • Understanding eating.

  • Major food groups.

  • Food allergies and Intolerance introduction.

2. The Digestive System

  • The Alimentary Canal- Muscular Structures.

  • Accessory Digestive Organs.

  • Digestive Tract Linings.

3. Absorption and Enzymes

  • Physical and Mechanical breakdown.

  • Understanding biochemical breakdown.

  • Biological breakdown.

  • Digestive Hormones.

  • Digestive Enzymes.

  • Absorption - anatomical adaptations for absorption.

  • Absorption (general).

  • Detoxification mechanisms.

  • The Urinary System.

  • Physiology of the urinary system.

  • Skin and sweat glands.

4. Energy Value of Foods

  • The science of nutrition.

  • Diet.

  • Energy Value in Foods.

  • Nutrients.

  • Energy Production.

  • Basal Metabolic Rate.

5. Carbohydrates and Fats

  • Types of Carbohydrates - Monosaccharides, Oligosaccharides and Polysaccharides.

  • Carbohydrates in the diet.

  • Carbohydrates in the body.

  • Alcohol.

  • Fats and fat biochemistry.

  • Fats in the diet.

  • Fats in the body.

6. Proteins

  • Uses in the body.

  • Recommended protein intakes.

  • Grains.

  • Vegetables.

  • Nuts and Seeds.

  • Beef, Poultry and Fish (meat structure).

  • Meat Quality.

  • Eggs and Dairy.

  • Proteins in the diet.

  • Proteins in the body.

7. Vitamins and Minerals

  • The Recommended Daily Allowance.

  • The Dietary Reference Intake.

  • Summary of Vitamins.

  • Fat soluble vitamins.

  • Water soluble vitamins.

  • Common minerals.

  • Inorganic elements.

  • The Calcium Debate.

8. Water

  • Water in the body (function).

  • Water retention.

  • Water loss and chronic dehydration.

9. Nutrient Disorders

  • Selected digestive system disorders.

  • Vomiting.

  • Peptic ulcer.

  • Jaundice.

  • Lactose intolerance.

  • Haemorrhoids.

  • Cirrhosis.

  • Allergies.

  • Cholesterol, heart disease and atherosclerosis.

  • Bowel Cancer.

  • Problems with nutrition.

Each lesson includes an assignment which students are to complete and submit to the school for marking.  Your tutor will return this to you with any relevant suggestions, comments, and if necessary, extra reading.


On successful completion of the course you should be able to do the following:

  • Explain the role of different food types in human health.

  • Explain the physiology of digestive processes.

  • Recommend appropriate intake of vitamins.

  • Recommend appropriate intake of minerals.

  • Recommend appropriate food intake to meet an individual's energy needs.

  • Recommend appropriate carbohydrate intake.

  • Recommend appropriate fat intake.

  • Recommend appropriate protein intake.

  • Recommend appropriate water intake in different situations.

  • Recognise signs and symptoms of the major nutrient disorders.


Here are some examples of things you may be doing

  • Distinguish between nutrition terms including: food, nutrition and diet.

  • Distinguish between characteristics of all major food groups, including;
    - chemistry and foods which are a good source.

  • Explain the significance of each of the major food groups, including:
    - Carbohydrates, Proteins, Fats, Minerals, Vitamins.

  • Label on unlabelled illustrations, parts of the digestive system, including:
    - Oesophagus, Liver, Stomach, Gall bladder, Pancreas, Duodenum,  Ascending colon, Caecum, Appendix, Transverse colon, Descending colon, Ileum, Sigmoid colon, Rectum.

  • Explain the function of different parts of the digestive system, including:
    - Salivary Glands, Liver, Stomach, Gall bladder, Pancreas, Duodenum,  Colon, Ileum, Rectum.

  • Distinguish between digestion and absorption of food.

  • Explain the different layers of the digestive tract, including:
    - Mucosa, Submucosa, Muscularis, Serosa.

  • Explain different physiological processes involved in absorption

  • Explain how different hormones control the digestive process, including:
    - Gastrin, Gastric Inhibitory Peptide, Secretin, Cholecystokinin.

  • Explain the action of different digestive enzymes.

  • Convert calories to joules.

  • Explain the meaning of basal metabolic rate (BMR).

  • Describe how the intake of different types of food may affect metabolic rate.

  • Explain how different factors other than food intake can affect digestion, including stress and disease.

  • Compare energy values of different foods, on a given food chart.

  • Explain possible implications of mismatching food intake to individual's energy needs, through over or under intake of energy requirements.

  • List foods which are a common sources of carbohydrate.

  • List common foods in your own diet which are poor sources of carbohydrate.

  • Distinguish between monosaccharides and disaccharides in your own normal diet.

  • Explain relative values of alternative sources of carbohydrates.

  • Explain factors which affect the bodies demand for carbohydrate.

  • Develop guidelines to determining appropriate carbohydrate intake, in accordance with an individuals specific requirements.

  • List foods which are a common source of fats.

  • Distinguish between saturated and unsaturated fats in the diet of a specific person.

  • Explain the relative value of alternative sources of fats.

  • Explain factors which affect the bodies demand for fat.

  • Explain the role of fat in the body, including an explanation of different physiological processes involving fat.

  • Develop a set of guidelines to determining appropriate fat intake, in accordance with an individual's specific requirements.

  • List foods which are a good source of protein.

  • Explain the role of protein in the body, including examples of different physiological processes involving protein.

  • Explain relative values of different sources of protein.

  • Explain factors which affect the bodies demand for protein.

  • Develop guidelines to determining appropriate fat intake, in accordance with an individual's specific requirements.

  • List different sources for each of several different minerals considered essential to human health.

  • Explain the role of different minerals in the body.

  • Consider the relative values of different sources of minerals in your own diet, to determine minerals which may be supplied in inappropriate quantities.

  • Describe symptoms of different nutrient disorders including deficiencies and toxicities.

  • Explain the use of different mineral supplements in a specified human diet.

  • Distinguish between sources of different types of vitamins which are important to human health, including: - Retinol, Vitamin D, Vitamin E,  Vitamin K, Ascorbic acid, Thiamine, Riboflavin, Nicotinamide, Pyridoxine,  Pantothenic acid, Biotin, Cyanocobalamin, Folacin.

  • Explain the role of different vitamins in the body.

  • Explain the relative values of different sources of each of five vitamins.

  • Explain proliferation of vitamin supplement usage in modern society.

  • Describe symptoms of five different vitamin disorders including deficiencies and toxicities.

  • Explain the role of water in the body, for different physiological processes.

  • List factors which affect the body's requirement for water.

  • Compare different methods of purifying water, including different commercially available water purifiers.

  • Explain the physiology of dehydration, at different levels.

  • Discuss the affect of different water impurities on human health.

  • Distinguish between the signs and symptoms of forty common problems associated with nutritional disorders, including: - deficiencies, sensitivities, diseases.

  • Describe different techniques used by health practitioners for determining food/nutrition disorders.

  • Explain the importance of obtaining a recommendation from a medical practitioner, when a nutritional disorder is suspected.

  • Explain the significance of "second opinion", when diagnosing nutrient disorders.


Learn about nutrition and good diet

Information today is so readily available with the internet, though one does need to question what you read; particularly when you discover information that is contradictory.

Anyone can publish on the internet - some information sourced from the internet is very useful, but some will be written by people who are not well informed!

It is always important to understand who wrote what you are reading; when they wrote it, and the context in which it was written.

Internet sources of nutritional information

Healthcare websites have become a very popular source of health care information. For example one study found that around 80% of internet users had searched online for health information. Good internet sites can encourage healthy behaviours and allow people to make informed decisions and take control over their health. However, as with all sources of information, some internet sites will be better than others. To help you judge the credibility of an internet site consider the following:

Does the internet site provide information about the people/ organisation responsible for it? This can allow you to research their credibility. Also consider whether the website is trying to sell you something. Internet sites that are trying to sell products such as a nutritional supplements, or services such as a weight loss plan, are likely to be biased in favour of their product or service. Other important considerations include whether a website has been recently updated as historical advice may have disputed by more recent findings. Also consider whether any advice given on a website is backed up by reliable research studies (see above). Again be cautious if you are looking at sponsored sites where research may contain bias.

Even credible organisations like universities don't always keep their web sites up to date; so be cautious about material that may have been written and published many years ago.


Nutritional research tends to attract considerable media attention, especially where it can lead to attention grabbing headlines such as those claiming that a particular food or diet could cause or prevent a common disease or symptom e.g. heart disease or the effects of the menopause. Conflicts in the advice provided by media sources makes it unsurprising that a high proportion of the general public have been shown to feel frustrated with nutritional advice and uncertain as to which sources of information to trust. A particular area of concern is that media sources often report the findings of a single piece of research and do not discuss how this research fits with other pieces of research on the same topic or with general dietary advice or recommendations. As a result people start to feel that scientists/government health advisory sources and healthcare professionals frequently contradict each other and are unsure which source to trust.

Advice from Healthcare professionals

Healthcare professionals are often a reliable and trustworthy source of nutritional information; although as with other sources of information, information provided can be contradictory and reflect the personal views of particular healthcare professionals rather than proven scientific evidence.

Advice from doctors

 Learn about good diet and nutrition

For many people with a nutritional concern doctors are viewed as a first line source of advice. People will trust doctors as they are not involved in selling particular dietary supplements or regimens and people accept that they have the relevant knowledge and experience to give accurate advice. Ideally doctors should be trained to give dietary advice relevant to a range of diseases that are affected by nutrition such as diabetes, heart disease, obesity and coeliac disease and be able to adapt dietary advice to meet differing requirements across the lifetime from pregnancy to old age. However, many doctors admit that they received little nutritional training as part

of their medical degree and may not feel confident to give dietary advice. Also time limitations in a medical consultation can limit the amount of time a doctor can dedicate to discussing diet. Due to these limitations patients requiring more detailed dietary advice will often be referred on to other healthcare professionals such as a nutrition nurse or dietitian.


In many countries dietitians are regarded as credible source of information on nutrition and health. A dietitian is qualified to advise patients on how to modify their diet based on their medical condition and social/economic considerations. Registered dietitians have a degree in the field of nutrition and have also completed clinical practice where they must demonstrate they are competent to provide nutritional advice to patients referred to them. Dietitians tend to be members of professional organisations and are legally protected. For example, in the UK Dietitians belong to the British Dietetic Association and are regulated by the Health Professions Council, in Australia Dietitians belong to the Dietitians Association of Australia and in America dietitians (spelt dietician) are members of the American Dietetic Association and regulated by the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR). Dietitians work in a variety of healthcare settings including hospitals; health centres/ doctors practices as well as in health promotion.


Nutritionists can also be a credible source of nutritional advice and work in an advisory capacity in a wide range of health promotion settings such as in family centres as well as working in industry promoting specific nutritional products. However, nutritionists are not generally registered to provide dietary advice relevant to clinical conditions and should refer patients requiring this advice to their doctor/ healthcare professional. Qualifications available to potential nutritionists range from short courses to diplomas and degrees. It is important to view learning as an ongoing process and understand limitations to practice will be related to knowledge and experience and the need for insurance to practice.





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Meet some of our academics

Jade SciasciaBiologist, Business Coordinator, Government Environmental Dept, Secondary School teacher (Biology); Recruitment Consultant, Senior Supervisor in Youth Welfare, Horse Riding Instructor (part-completed) and Boarding Kennel Manager. Jade has a B.Sc.Biol, Dip.Professional Education, Cert IV TESOL, Cert Food Hygiene.

Check out our eBooks

Human NutritionBoth a text for students, or an informative read for anyone who wants to eat better. While covering the basics, the book approaches nutrition a little differently here to some other books, with sections covering ”Modifying diet according to Genetic Disposition or Lifestyle”, “How to find Reliable Information on Nutrition” and “Understanding how Diet relates to Different Parts of the Body” (including Urinary, Digestive, Respiratory and Circulatory System, the Brain, etc). This ebook was written to complement the ACS Nutrition I course, and provides a solid foundation for anyone wanting to grasp a fundamental understanding of Human Nutrition.
Organic GardeningFor decades farmers have relied upon chemicals to control pests and diseases in order to produce saleable crops. In the ornamental, vegetable and fruit gardens reliance on chemical controls has also been the mainstay for many gardeners.
Human BiologyFor any new student of human biology, being confronted with thousands of unfamiliar words can be overwhelming. It can also be difficult to identify which words you need to learn first. This book presents words that have been carefully selected as the most important for new biology students to learn and understand. It also provides more information about each word than is often found in traditional dictionaries, giving students a more in-depth understanding of the word's meaning. The book is intended as an aid to all new students of human biology.
Nutritional TherapyDiscover how the way you eat can impact upon the affects of an illness. This book is unique, written by our health and nutritional scientists. Chapters cover: “Scope and Nature of Nutritional Therapy”, “How different factors Interact with Nutrition”, “Different Ways” and “Appropriate Therapeutic Responses for Different Health Issues” Thirty different conditions are covered from Mental Illness and Gastritis to Coeliac Disease and Osteoporosis.