HNH-31706 Nutrition and the Brain

This Study Handbook is published with reservation. It is not official yet.

Course

Credits 6.00

Teaching methodContact hours
Lecture26
Tutorial30
Practical20
Course coordinator(s)IAC Arnoldussen
dr. ir. O van de Rest
Lecturer(s)dr. ir. O van de Rest
dr. WT Steegenga
dr. PAM Smeets
IAC Arnoldussen
Esther Aarts
Examiner(s)dr. ir. O van de Rest

Language of instruction:

EN

Assumed knowledge on:

- Basics of human physiology
- Basics of nutrition (macro- and micronutrients)


Continuation courses:

MSc Thesis

Contents:

Note: This course has a maximum number of participants.
The deadline for registration is one week earlier than usual. See Academic Year: https://www.wur.nl/en/Education-Programmes/Current-Students/Agenda-Calendar-Academic-Year.htm->Registration for Courses

In this course students will learn about different themes and aspects involved in nutritional research related to the brain and brain-related disorders. 
These themes comprise:
- Basic principles of brain function, metabolism and vasculature;
- Gut-brain axis, including diet-gut microbiome interactions.
- Basics and role of nutrition of brain-related disorders, such as cognitive ageing, Parkinson, depression, aggression, ADHD, autism, obesity and eating disorders.

Learning outcomes:

After successful completion of this course students are expected to be able to:
- explain basic brain anatomy, morphology, function and alterations in brain-related disorders across the lifespan;
- explain nutrient metabolism and vasculature in the brain;
- explain the gut-brain axis and the effects of dietary factors on this axis, including their effects in the gut microbiome;
- explain the impact of nutrition and related factors on brain function and brain-related disorders;
- critically evaluate and judge literature about claims of nutritional effects on the brain;
- design a novel study investigating nutritional effects on a brain-related disorder;
- organize and execute an experiment to assess nutritional effects on the brain.

Activities:

- (Guest)lectures;
- 3 group work assignments:
1) critically investigate, judge and discuss a nutrition & brain claim;
2) design a new nutritional study to investigate the nutritional effect on brain disease, and
3) execute a nutritional experiment to assess the effect of a nutritional component on cognitive and physical performance.


Examination:

Written exam with open and closed questions (60%), group assignments (40%). Each individual grade needs to be ≥5.5 to pass the course.

Literature:

To be announced

ProgrammePhaseSpecializationPeriod
Restricted Optional for: MNHNutrition and HealthMScE: Spec. E - Systems Approach for Sustainable and Healthy Diets5AF
MNHNutrition and HealthMScF: Spec. F - Food Digestion and Health5AF
MNHNutrition and HealthMScA: Spec. A - Nutritional and Public Health Epidemiology5AF
MNHNutrition and HealthMScD: Spec. D - Sensory Science5AF
MNHNutrition and HealthMScC: Spec. C - Molecular Nutrition and Toxicology5AF
MNHNutrition and HealthMScB: Spec. B - Nutritional Physiology and Health Status5AF