NT6801: Introduction to the Principles of Nutrition

Credit Weighting: 5
No. of Students: Min 13, Max 40.
Pre-requisite(s): None
Co-requisite(s): None
Teaching Period(s): Semesters 1 or 2 or 3. (Semester details will be confirmed at the start of the programme).
Teaching Methods: 8 x 3hr(s) Lectures (including guest lectures); 100hr(s) Directed Study (self-directed study)
Module Co-ordinator: Dr Alice Lucey, School of Food and Nutritional Sciences.
Lecturer(s): Staff, Department of Food and Nutritional Sciences.
Module Objective: To provide an introduction to the study of human nutrition and health.
Module Content: Introduction to nutrition. Food composition, macronutrients: carbohydrates, fats, proteins; water, minerals and vitamins. Changing nutritional needs through the life cycle from infancy to old age.
Nutrition and public health: Dietary recommendations. Energy requirements, energy balance, overweight and obesity.
Diet and chronic disease, type II diabetes mellitus, cardiovascular disease, cancer, osteoporosis. Food allergies and intolerance. Functional foods.
Learning Outcome: On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:
  • Outline the specific roles of macronutrients and micronutrients in relation to human health.
  • Discuss the changes in nutritional requirements across the lifecycle from intrauterine development to old age.
  • Describe the key elements of a healthy balanced diet using the concepts of recommended dietary allowances and food-based dietary guidelines.
  • Describe the concept of energy balance and the factors that contribute to overweight, obesity and under-nutrition.
  • Analyse the relationships between food and non-communicable diseases prevalent in our society, paying particular attention to the role of optimum nutrition in the prevention of chronic disease.
  • Discuss topics of particular relevance to the nutrition and health sector e.g. food intolerance and allergy; food innovation and functional foods.
  • Distinguish between fact/research-based principles of nutrition and popular nutrition myths.
Assessment: Total Marks 100: Continuous Assessment 100 marks (In-class test (100 marks)).
Compulsory Elements: Continuous Assessment.
Penalties (for late submission of course/project work etc.): None.
Pass Standard and any Special Requirements for Passing Module: 40%.
End of Year Written Examination Profile: No Formal Written Examination.
Requirements for Supplemental Examination: Marks in passed element(s) of Continuous Assessment are carried forward, Failed element(s) of Continuous Assessment must be repeated (as presecribed by the module co-ordinator).

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