HAP-32303 Essentials of Nutritional Physiology (online)


Credits 3.00

Teaching methodContact hours
Knowledge clip0
Independent study0
E-learning material0
Course coordinator(s)dr. S Grefte
Lecturer(s)dr. ir. EM van Schothorst
dr. S Grefte
Examiner(s)dr. ir. EM van Schothorst
prof. dr. ir. J Keijer
dr. S Grefte

Language of instruction:


Assumed knowledge on:

Basic knowledge of nomenclature and chemical structures of macro-nutrients (also see chapters 1, 4, 5, and 6 of Course book Crash Course Metabolism and Nutrition Updated Edition (4th Edition))


Note: This course has a maximum number of participants. The deadline for registration is one week earlier than usual. See Academic Year.(http://www.wageningenur.nl/en/Education-Programmes/Current-Students/Agenda-Calendar-Academic-Year.htm) -> Registration for Courses.
Note: The period mentioned below is the period in which this course starts. For the exact academic weeks see the courseplanning on www.wur.eu/schedule.

Aim: The sources of energy in our diet for the human body are carbohydrates, lipids, and proteins. The focus of this course is on metabolism of these macro-nutrients to provide cellular energy. We start in the first week by discussing the processes involved in mitochondrial ATP production. In the second week we discuss the details and purpose of the biochemical pathways involved in carbohydrate metabolism followed by protein metabolism. The focus of the third week is on fat metabolism. Via several individual assignments you will work with and apply the knowledge you acquired to get more familiar with the biochemical pathways. In the final assignment, in week 4, you gain in depth knowledge of inter-organ relations and several metabolic effects of diabetes. The course ends with a written exam.
Relevance: The design and evaluation of epidemiological observational and experimental nutritional studies were introduced previously in other courses within your DL-study program. However, a basic understanding of carbohydrate, lipid and protein metabolism is critical to 1) decide which strategies will be used to clinically assess metabolic and nutritional disorders and 2) how to interpret the data obtained.

Learning outcomes:

After successful completion of this course students are expected to be able to:
- describe the process of mitochondrial ATP production;
- describe the regulation of metabolism during fasting and feeding;
- explain the differences between glucose, lipid, and protein metabolism;
- analyse the amount of energy derived from glucose, protein and fat intake;
- integrate the biochemical pathways involved in carbohydrate, protein and lipid metabolism;
- predict the metabolic consequences of diabetes.


Most e-learning materials, activities, and feedback will be provided asynchronously and consists of:
- textual explanations, animations, and quizzes to obtain the basic knowledge;
- continuous individual assignments;
- individual assignments with a deadline resulting in a product (poster, pdf, etc);
- an e-forum to discuss problems, ask questions, etc.


Will be announced.


Crash Course Metabolism and Nutrition Updated Edition (4th Edition); Amber Appleton, Olivia Vanbergen, and Daniel Horton-Szar; Elsevier ISBN 978-0-7234-3853-3 (obligatory course material).

Compulsory for: MNHNutrition and HealthMScE: Nutritional Epidemiology and Public Health3DL