MSHN 501 Course Description:

The concept of whole foods is central to the study of holistic nutrition. The value and necessity of quality whole foods and their relationship to health and wellness is explored. General principles and requirements of human nutrition are reviewed and a variety of promoted dietary programs are studied and critiqued. The concept of biochemical individuality, the benefits of fresh, whole, chemical-free, traditional, plant-based foods, transitional diets, and lifestyle improvements are explored.

Prerequisite: None

MSHN 501 Course Objectives:

  • Describe and apply the basic principles of holistic health and nutrition
  • Define and summarize biochemical individuality, nutrigenomics, and epigenetics
  • Evaluate and summarize the differences between whole foods, processed foods, and refined foods
  • Compare and contrast the effects and consequences of consuming nutrient dense whole foods vs. consuming processed, or nutrient deficient refined foods
  • Formulate a strategy to observe, monitor, and track food intake and activity
  • Distinguish between the characteristics of various dietary systems
  • Assess the benefits of traditional and plant-based eating versus a Western diet
  • Evaluate and summarize lifestyle and environmental factors that support or diminish health
  • Differentiate and implement the S.M.A.R.T. elements of food and lifestyle goal setting

MSHN 505 Course Description:

Students are introduced to valuable Internet sites, library systems, and clinical nutrition and medical journals to remain abreast of recently published research findings in the continuously evolving field of nutrition. Students are taught and are required to use critical thinking processes to understand and evaluate research studies, discern the quality, accuracy, and validity of published materials, and recognize the advantages and limitations of experimental designs and outcomes. This course provides the structure for students to conduct research projects throughout their master’s course of studies and to begin to identify a possible topic for the MSHN 590: Thesis Preparation course.

Prerequisite: MSHN 501

MSHN 505 Course Objectives:

  • Summarize the importance of remaining current with recently published research findings 
  • Integrate the critical thinking processes used to understand and evaluate published research findings 
  • Identify and use valuable Internet sites, library systems, and peer-reviewed nutrition and health journals 
  • Review sources of nutrition information for reliability 
  • Apply the guidelines for responsibly sharing information, including how to properly grant credit for another’s work 
  • Explain the scientific method as it is used in developing hypotheses and conducting research in the field of nutrition 
  • Identify potential research flaws and conflicts including funding, profit motives, fraud, data manipulation, and bias 
  • Outline and apply the key steps and elements of drafting a research paper 
  • Understand and properly apply APA format

MSHN 510 Course Description:

Macronutrients, the components of whole foods that provide calories for human energy and structural precursors are examined. The biochemical nature and classification of carbohydrates, lipids, and proteins are presented, differentiating between the effects of whole versus refined foods in human metabolism. Students learn to determine individual dietary macronutrient requirements as well as the therapeutic value and use of specific fatty and amino acids while comparing whole-food and reductionist nutrition perspectives.

Prerequisite: MSHN 501

MSHN 510 Course Objectives:

  • Describe basic human structure and control mechanisms 
  • Relate basic chemistry principles to food components 
  • Evaluate the process of digestion with reference to the absorption and metabolism of carbohydrates, lipids, and protein 
  • Classify and summarize the function and healing qualities of each macronutrient 
  • Summarize how blood glucose levels are maintained, how glucose is taken up by the cells, and how energy storage in the body is regulated 
  • Evaluate the USDA recommended intakes for each macronutrient to maintain or improve health in relation to bioindividual needs 
  • Summarize the value and use of specific fatty and amino acids 
  • Employ nutrient analysis software to calculate macronutrients in an average day’s food intake and calculate the ratio of each macronutrient to total caloric intake 
  • Assess healthy macronutrient choices and plan how such choices can be used in a meal 
  • Classify and summarize the conditions resulting from deficient or excess intake of each macronutrient 
  • Evaluate and develop food plans for the restorative use of each macronutrient 
  • Compare holistic and reductionist nutrition perspectives

MSHN 515 Course Description:

Micronutrients and their fundamental impact on human growth, metabolism, cellular integrity and repair are discussed in this course. Students examine the individual nutrients in foods, their interactive biochemical roles in human metabolism, and the effects of nutrient deficiencies and excesses. Students are taught to appreciate biochemical individuality as a key factor in restoration of homeostasis as vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, phytonutrients, and accessory nutrients are reviewed. Nutrient values from food sources and supplementation are discussed reviewing the manufacturing process and its impact on product quality.

Prerequisite: MSHN 501

MSHN 515 Course Objectives:

  • Describe structures and functions of the eukaryotic cell 
  • Explain membrane transport processes 
  • Summarize how cells regulate their intracellular and extracellular environments 
  • Evaluate and discuss the importance and regulation of water in the body 
  • Assess and summarize the function and healing qualities of vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals 
  • Analyze and describe the factors influencing the bioavailability of micronutrients 
  • Provide recommendations on how to select, prepare, and store foods to optimize their nutrient content 
  • Analyze the USDA and SONA recommended intakes for individual micronutrients to maintain or improve health 
  • Classify the conditions resulting from deficient or excess intake of each micronutrient
  • Employ the nutrient analysis software to calculate the micronutrients in a day’s food intake, and compare to the USDA recommended intake for each micronutrient

MSHN 520 Course Description:

Organs, glands, chemical messengers, and digestive secretions involved in the process of digestion, absorption, and metabolism are reviewed as the alimentary canal and its associated structures are studied to learn the intricate mechanics involved in human metabolism.  The applications of integrative nutritional tools are introduced, including assessments, foods, herbs, lifestyle factors, and nutritional supplements that enhance digestion and utilization of food.

Prerequisite: MSHN 505

MSHN 520 Course Objectives:

  • Identify and describe the function of the organs and glands associated with the process of digestion and absorption 
  • Summarize the independent and interrelated functions of the digestive organs, glands, hormones, and secretions 
  • Categorize and summarize the common symptoms and conditions associated with faulty digestion 
  • Evaluate the process by which nutrients are liberated and absorbed by the body 
  • Distinguish the difference between acids and bases, and describe the pH of various parts of the alimentary canal 
  • Summarize how cells regulate their intracellular and extracellular environments 
  • Classify and utilize the assessments used to identify the health status of the digestive system 
  • Formulate various food, herb, lifestyle, and supplement strategies that are used to support digestive health 

MSHN 525 Course Description:

Students learn to interpret nutrition labels, use food/nutrient tables and utilize computer programs to evaluate the nutritional value of a particular food, recipe, or diet, including the total caloric intake and individual macronutrient and micronutrient breakdown. Students learn to distinguish acids from bases and how the body maintains pH balance in various tissues. Students gain practice determining an individual’s nutrient needs and distinguishing high quality, nutrient dense foods that support health from poor quality nutrient depleted food-like products that contribute to poor health and disease patterns. Appropriate dietary methods to support a client’s health concerns and goals with suggestions for guiding individuals toward a path to wholeness and well-being are taught and practiced.

Prerequisite: MSHN 510

MSHN 525 Course Objectives:

  • Summarize and implement diet planning principles and guidelines 
  • Interpret a food label 
  • Distinguish the difference between acids and bases and how the body maintains correct pH in various tissues 
  • Examine and assess the health consequences of alkaline and acid food intake 
  • Assess the origins and use of the philosophy of Nutritional ID 
  • Evaluate nutrient values in diet records, determine appropriate intervention strategies to improve health, and select foods that suit the needs and preferences of an individual 
  • Examine and utilize special healing diets 
  • Summarize the qualities of, and develop a well-crafted educational handout 
  • Provide recommendations on selecting, preparing, and storing foods

MSHN 530 Course Description:

Effective communication is explored as students receive instruction on the art of listening, building rapport, and giving positive feedback and direction to clients. Tools and skills needed to promote understanding and trust between practitioner and client are presented. Specific client forms and questionnaires which enable a practitioner to explore patterns contributing to an individual’s current health concerns are introduced. Students practice gathering and evaluating information about a client, counseling skills, and the structure and development of a client’s healing program.

Prerequisite: MSHN 510

MSHN 530 Course Objectives:

  • Categorize and assess a variety of counseling strategies 
  • Summarize and implement essential components of effective listening skills 
  • Develop trust, confidence, and rapport in client relationships 
  • Demonstrate cultural competence and cultural humility 
  • Identify common obstacles that people face when making dietary and lifestyle changes 
  • Evaluate and integrate various theories on motivation and change implementation 
  • Prepare for and conduct a client health consultation 
  • Collect and interpret specific diet and health information from client consultations 
  • Create appropriate S.M.A.R.T. goals with a client and develop a plan of action to successfully implement them 
  • Develop a Health Protocol for a practice client 

Prior to enrolling in advanced level courses, students must have successfully completed all prior coursework and passed the Midterm Examination.

MSHN 535 Course Description:

Communication skills are employed as students apply the principles and practice the art of listening, building rapport, and giving positive feedback and direction to clients. Developing a relationship of understanding and trust between practitioner and client is emphasized. Nutritional tools used to assess health status and specific protocols to support health recovery and maintenance are implemented. Specific client forms and questionnaires are utilized to explore patterns within body systems that may be contributing to an individual’s current health concerns. Students review case studies, the appropriate use of nutritional supplements and a variety of self-administered and laboratory assessments while practicing the intake, planning and educational phases of nutritional consultation and develop an individualized health protocol.

Prerequisite: Midterm

MSHN 535 Course Objectives:

  • Assess and implement the characteristics, skills, and strategies of an effective holistic nutrition consultant 
  • Integrate motivational and behavior change theories in consultation sessions 
  • Apply effective listening skills and develop rapport in client consultations 
  • Prepare for and conduct client consultations 
  • Collect and interpret client nutrition, health, and lifestyle information 
  • Identify and suggest appropriate supplements, assessments, and lab tests for specific health situations and conditions 
  • Integrate cultural competence and cultural humility into client consultation sessions 
  • Identify common obstacles that may arise when making dietary and lifestyle changes 
  • Create appropriate S.M.A.R.T. goals with a client and a plan to implement them 
  • Develop Health Protocols for selected clients and groups;
  • Summarize and integrate a facilitator’s responsibilities for leading workshops, classes, and counseling groups of individuals 
  • Develop support systems for clients and professional networking

MSHN 540 Course Description:

The conditions of underweight, overweight, obesity and the associated consequences to health are examined. Excess intake and under utilization of food, how calories are converted to usable energy or stored in the body, and the associated impact on weight loss or gain is explored. Heredity, conditioning, metabolism, dieting, the effects of hormonal influences and environmental toxins are presented. Addressing sustainable long-term weight reduction as well as increasing weight in a healthy manner is explained. Students evaluate and develop holistic diet and lifestyle protocols for achieving and maintaining healthy weight.

Prerequisite: MSHN 535

MSHN 540 Course Objectives:

  • Assess the regulation of energy balance and how energy intake and energy expenditure are estimated 
  • Evaluate the genetic and environmental factors that lead to conditions of over- and under-weight 
  • Describe how weight is affected by stress 
  • Explain the role hormones play in appetite and energy balance 
  • Contrast various weight loss approaches and their effectiveness 
  • Examine the importance of physical activity in weight and energy regulation 
  • Summarize the effectiveness of various supplements in weight loss and gain 
  • Devise a nutritional support strategy to address weight management and fitness issues 

MSHN 545 Course Description:

An advanced study of digestive and intestinal health and the challenges associated with proper digestion, absorption, and elimination required to gain optimal nutritional benefits from foods is presented. The complex interaction between the gastrointestinal tract and the microbiome is explored, focusing on restoring beneficial flora to improve health. Gastrointestinal dysfunction and etiology caused by the disruption of these processes, and various assessments and laboratory procedures to evaluate digestive function are discussed. Health supportive nutritional protocols for gastrointestinal conditions are developed.

Prerequisite: MSHN 540

MSHN 545 Course Objectives:

  • Differentiate and summarize the structure and functions of a healthy gastrointestinal tract 
  • Indicate the roles enzymes and hormones have on the gastrointestinal tract 
  • Assess and summarize the role and importance of Gut Associated Lymphatic Tissue (GALT)
  • Describe the role of the microbiome to human health 
  • Assess the consequences of hyper- and hypo- intestinal permeability 
  • Evaluate and summarize malabsorption and related gastrointestinal conditions 
  • Identify and utilize assessments and lab tests to identify the health status of the gastrointestinal system
  • Conduct a client consultation, analyze health status, identify obstacles, and develop health supportive protocols and goals

MSHN 550 Course Description:

The anatomy, physiology, and nutrient requirements of the major organs of detoxification; liver, kidneys, lungs, and integumentary system are studied in depth. Current research investigating environmental toxins and their impact on health is discussed. Functional assessments and related laboratory tests are presented as students examine holistic, systematic cleansing and detoxification support methods and develop a detoxification program.

Prerequisite: MSHN 545

MSHN 550 Course Objectives:

  • Evaluate and summarize the process of cellular detoxification 
  • Assess and summarize the detoxification functions of all organs 
  • Contrast and summarize Phase I and Phase II liver detoxification pathways 
  • Compare and contrast the characteristics of various toxins, where they originate, and develop strategies to avoid exposure 
  • Propose several strategies that support the natural detoxification abilities of the body 
  • Prepare a sample regimen of nourishing foods, herbs, and nutraceuticals to restore balance and health 

MSHN 555 Course Description:

The endocrine system, including the hormones and secretions produced and their impact on health is examined.  Students explore the intricate interrelationship between the endocrine glands, nervous system, and various substances in the blood, which govern the secretion of hormones. The effects of stress management, diet, and nutrient support for health are discussed, while conditions resulting from or associated with endocrine dysfunction are presented.  Functional assessments and laboratory test results are presented and specific health protocols are developed.

Prerequisite: MSHN 545

MSHN 555 Course Objectives:

  • Categorize and summarize the interrelationships of the glands of the endocrine system 
  • Distinguish and summarize the function associated with each endocrine gland 
  • Assess and summarize the hypo- and hyper- associated conditions specific to the adrenal and thyroid glands and pancreas 
  • Compare, evaluate, and utilize the functional assessments and lab tests used to determine endocrine glandular health 
  • Evaluate and summarize the body’s adaptation cycle in response to stress 
  • Discuss the role of endocrine disruptors on health 
  • Recognize the role of diet, lifestyle, and supplements in endocrine dysfunction and propose a holistic healing protocol designed to restore endocrine balance for a selected client 

MSHN 560 Course Description:

The muscular and skeletal systems are explored, providing insight and strategies to maintain a strong and fit structural body. Diet and exercise for various metabolic needs and activity levels are introduced. Health issues such as injury, chronic pain, the inflammatory process, arthritis and osteoporosis are discussed. A number of complementary healing modalities are presented as part of a supportive wellness protocol for individuals seeking to maintain or reclaim the health of the muscular and skeletal systems. Functional assessments and laboratory test results are presented and specific health protocols are developed.

Prerequisite: MSHN 545

MSHN 560 Course Objectives:

  • Identify the three types of muscle tissue of the body and their locations and functions 
  • Explain how connective tissue is integral in musculoskeletal function 
  • Categorize and describe bone structure and function, fracture types and healing, and common bone and joint disorders 
  • Categorize and describe the structure of muscles, including contractility mechanisms, and their common injuries and disorders 
  • Categorize and describe the chemicals involved in the inflammatory process 
  • Evaluate the inflammatory process and its relationship to the healing process 
  • Assess and summarize the pain chemical pathways
  • Formulate physical activity recommendations to aid in maintaining or reclaiming health
  • Propose a holistic health protocol designed to restore musculoskeletal balance for a selected client

MSHN 565 Course Description:

The dynamics of the circulatory system, composed of the heart, blood and vessels are studied. Research is presented to demonstrate the impact of genetics and various diets and activity levels on the health of the cardiovascular system. Functional assessments and laboratory test results are presented. Students examine health supportive dietary, lifestyle, herbal, and supplement recommendations and develop protocols to support healing and prevent common conditions of the cardiovascular system.

Prerequisite: MSHN 545

MSHN 565 Course Objectives:

  • Characterize and summarize the anatomy and physiology of the cardiovascular system 
  • Evaluate and summarize the key nutrients essential to heart health 
  • Assess and summarize the contributing factors that lead to heart health disturbances 
  • Examine and summarize atherosclerosis and diseases of the heart 
  • Compare, evaluate, and utilize the functional assessments and lab tests to determine the level and status of cardiovascular health 
  • Propose a holistic health protocol designed to restore cardiovascular balance for a selected client 

MSHN 570 Course Description:

A thorough review of the immune and lymphatic systems is presented addressing factors that enhance or inhibit normal function, including the impact of body systems, diet, lifestyle, chemical exposures, stress, and mental attitude. Students explore the intricacies of immunity as common conditions of the lymphatic and immune systems are studied to enhance function. The use of functional assessments and laboratory tests to identify health status and practical applications of appropriate diet, lifestyle, herbal, and supplement protocols are implemented.

Prerequisite: MSHN 545

MSHN 570 Course Objectives:

  • Assess and summarize the organs, cells, and chemical messengers of the immune, lymphatic, and respiratory system
  • Compare and contrast innate and adaptive immune systems 
  • Evaluate and summarize the inflammatory and immune responses
  • Compare how infectious organisms trigger key defenders of the immune system
  • Differentiate disorders of the immune and lymphatic systems and propose natural therapies to support immune modulation
  • Assess the impact stress and mental state have on immune function
  • Contrast and summarize autoimmunity and molecular mimicry
  • Examine the purpose and apply the steps to implement an elimination diet
  • Propose a holistic health protocol designed to restore immune and lymphatic balance for a select client

MSHN 575 Course Description:

Students explore the body’s nervous system, the vast network of nerve cells including the brain and spinal cord. A discussion of the intricacies of the central and peripheral nervous systems distinguishes between somatic and autonomic nerve function. The roles of the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems and their influences on health are presented. Etiologies of common nervous system conditions and the impact nutrition can have on the prevention and healing are explored. The use of functional assessments and laboratory tests to identify health status and practical applications of appropriate diet, lifestyle, herbal, and supplement protocols are implemented.

Prerequisite: MSHN 545

MSHN 575 Course Objectives:

  • Evaluate and summarize the functions of the various components of the brain and nervous system 
  • Summarize the role of the autonomic nervous system
  • Explain the role of neurotransmitters to health
  • Examine and summarize the brain-gastrointestinal connection and its importance to health
  • Evaluate and summarize the impact various foods have on mental health
  • Compare and contrast the role and effects of various types of fats on brain health
  • Assess elements that negatively impact the brain and how to protect and improve memory, mood, and mental function
  • Examine and summarize the role sleep has on mental wellness
  • Summarize common neurological disorders
  • Propose a holistic health protocol designed to restore mental health balance for a selected client

MSHN 580 Course Description:

The nutrient requirements to support physiological changes of each stage of human growth and development are studied, including pregnancy and lactation, infancy, adolescence, adulthood, and geriatrics. Students review case studies and employ nutritional tools to assess health status for common health conditions. Strategies for healthy aging processes are explored as students develop a presentation on a specific life cycle topic.

Prerequisite: MSHN 545

MSHN 580 Course Objectives:

  • Distinguish nutritional needs associated with pregnancy and breastfeeding
  • Assess and summarize the common health conditions associated with each phase of the life cycle
  • Analyze the influence of growth, development, and aging on nutritional
  • requirements across the lifespan
  • Assess nutritional needs and intervention strategies for all stages of the life cycle
  • Differentiate between the various types of eating disorders
  • Develop educational materials for a public presentation

MSHN 585 Course Description:

Students have integrated and applied the information presented throughout the program and now prepare to go into business. Instruction is presented to support growing a successful business with organization, networking, marketing, planning, and record keeping the focus of the course. Ethical aspects relating to nutritional professionals are explored as students are taught to work within the legal and professional scope of practice for health and nutrition consultants.

Prerequisite: Midterm

MSHN 585 Course Objectives:

  • Summarize the functional aspects involved in setting up a holistic nutrition and health related business
  • Identify the different legal business entities
  • Describe the components of a business plan that include a vision, mission, and a strategic plan for short and long term growth
  • Develop a business plan for a holistic nutrition and health related business
  • Summarize the scope of practice, standard of care, and code of ethics for a holistic nutrition professional
  • Explain professional boundaries with regards to nutritional professionals
  • Define potential target populations for a nutrition business
  • Develop marketing materials to promote a holistic nutrition business
  • Evaluate the importance of participating in professional associations and community networks relevant to holistic health and nutrition professionals
  • Assess and utilize the legal parameters of operating a holistic nutrition practice
  • Summarize the importance of educating policymakers regarding nutrition and food policies
  • Develop actions to positively influence the holistic health and nutrition profession

At the successful completion of all coursework, students must demonstrate that they are able to proceed to the thesis courses by passing the Advanced Level Exercise.

MSHN 590 Course Description:

This research-based course offers students the opportunity to demonstrate the theoretical and practical knowledge acquired in their program. The course is designed to assist students in the development of a scholarly thesis  proposal and guide them through the thesis process. Students choose a relevant topic of interest in nutrition, develop a thesis statement, a solid rationale for the research, and produce a comprehensive bibliography  to submit a thesis proposal for approval to their thesis advisor  Upon successful completion of this course, students become a Master’s degree candidate.  

Prerequisite: Final

MSHN 590 Course Objectives:

  • Propose a thesis topic, an outline for the thesis, and receive topic approval
  • Submit and receive IRB approval if needed
  • Submit an acceptable Subject Consent Form if needed
  • Compose and receive approval of an IRB sample letter to study participants if needed
  • Utilize the scientific method for writing a research thesis
  • Understand the process required to write a thesis
  • Determine the study design, method of data collection, and analysis

MSHN 595 Course Description:

In this course students complete their scholarly thesis as candidates for a Master's degree then present and defend their work to their thesis advisor during the course conference. Students work closely with their thesis advisor during this process, receiving feedback and guidance.

Prerequisite: MSHN 590

MSHN 595 Course Objectives:

  • Understand the process required to write a thesis
  • Utilize the scientific method for writing a research thesis
  • Determine the study design, method of data collection, and analysis
  • Submit a document suitable for publication
  • Prepare a presentation to be delivered at a variety of public speaking venues
  • Orally discuss the outcomes of the research and defend your findings

Students who have not completed their Research Thesis must register for Research Thesis Continuation course in each subsequent term until the thesis is completed. These Continuation courses do not carry semester hours of credit; however, students who register are considered to be enrolled and progressing toward a degree. The Research Thesis Continuation fee is ½ the total price of MSHN 595.