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BIOL3054 Nutrition in Health and Disease: Part 1

Module Overview

The aim of this module is to examine the causative, protective or therapeutic roles of nutrition with regard to human disease.

Aims and Objectives

Module Aims

The aim of this module is to examine the causative, protective or therapeutic roles of nutrition with regard to human disease.

Learning Outcomes

Learning Outcomes

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • Describe strategies for maintaining optimal nutrition during pregnancy to support both maternal health and the growth and development of the fetus.
  • Describe the rationale for developing immunonutrition products, the reasons why particular nutrients might be included in such products, and the evidence of efficacy of immunonutrition in different patient groups.
  • Describe some of the ways in which dietary components (including fatty acids and plant sterols) affect blood cholesterol concentration.
  • Describe some of the mechanisms by which dietary components promote or protect against cardiovascular disease.
  • Discuss maternal nutritional needs during lactation in terms of maintaining maternal health and providing nutrients for the growth and development of the infant.
  • Describe the issues surrounding provision of nutrition to support optimal growth, development and health of the infant in context with specific needs and maturational deficiencies.
  • Describe how appetite is controlled and how this differs between health and disease and changes with ageing.
  • Outline some of the molecular and cellular processes believed to be important in the development of obesity.
  • Describe the prevalence of malnutrition in the community and in hospitalised patients and the consequences of malnutrition.
  • Describe what is meant by metabolic syndrome and type-1 and type-2 diabetes.
  • Describe the host metabolic and inflammatory responses to infection and injury.
  • Describe the rationale behind artificial nutrition support and the different means of delivering artificial nutrition support.


The module focuses upon the role of diet in human health and disease through the life course and the potential of particular nutritional strategies to improve health in various population and patient subgroups. It covers pregnancy, lactation, infancy, diabetes, metabolic syndrome, obesity, cardiovascular disease and critical illness. The influence of dietary factors on cardiovascular risk markers; modern concepts of adipose tissue biology, appetite control, and obesity; the consequences of malnutrition; the host metabolic and inflammatory responses to infection, injury & trauma; the rationale behind immunonutrition and the evidence for its efficacy in different patient groups; and the importance of good nutrition in supporting pregnancy, lactation and infant growth and development are all covered.

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

Lectures and independent study.

Independent Study130
Total study time150



MethodPercentage contribution
Written exam  (2 hours) 100%


MethodPercentage contribution
Written exam 100%

Linked modules

Pre Requisites: BIOL2010 or BIOL2012 or BIOL2013

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