Nutrition 6 | Materia Medica of Food

Everything you need to know about creating therapeutic nutrition based eating plans for you and your family with confidence and ease.


Length: 9.5 hours

Instructor: Angeli Chitale

This course is within the following program

  • Holistic Nutrition Online

    Certificate Program

    view course

Need to know

Who is this course for?
Course length (start & watch when you want)
Lifetime access · Certificate of completion

Meet your course instructor

Angeli Chitale

Angeli Chitale is a Queen’s University Graduate in Molecular Biology and Genetics. During her final year of post-grad level work in genetic research at the Department of Pathology, she treated her chronic knee injury with natural medicine - nutrition, herbs and supplements. The impact was so life changing, it inspired her to pursue formal studies and training in Naturopathic Medicine. While a student at The Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine (CCNM), Angeli pursued further hands-on training in botanical medicine with the Ontario Herbalists Association. Upon graduation, she obtained further qualification in Restorative Medicine for the treatment of Thyroid, Adrenal and other endocrine/metabolic conditions. Angeli believes in contributing to the profession and has served as an Executive Board Member, Medical Editor for the LAND (Ontario Association of Naturopathic Doctors), Chair of the Naturopathic Legacy Committee and has worked overseas with NGOs such as Naturopathic Doctors International who provides natural medical care to patients in remote and isolated areas of Central America. Here, Angeli supervised clinical care in Women’s Clinics, taught Global Health, Botanical Medicine and Clinical skills to prospective ND candidates from all over North America. Angeli is a professional member of the AARM (Association for the Advancement of Restorative Medicine) and continues to remain politically active in enabling access to natural health for the Canadian public. Angeli views health as maintaining balance within all aspects of a person: emotional, mental, spiritual, environmental, social, physical - and that healing happens on all levels. When not consulting, Angeli enjoys learning, teaching, writing articles for publication, growing food, hiking, kayaking and landscape painting.

Course description

Ever wonder how to make the best food choices for health using nutrition fundamentals but unsure of where to begin? This course surveys the therapeutic properties of some of the most common and nutrient-rich foods in North America. As with plant Materia Medica, emphasis will be placed on food monographs and macro and micronutrient analysis. 

Historical and cultural significance, clinical relevance, and practical therapeutic use of each food will be highlighted in each class. The aim of this course is to provide the fundamentals of nutrition by introducing you to the macros, micro’s and phytonutrients necessary to build your confidence in making empowered food-based nutrition choices for you and your family.

Through the lens of food and holistic nutrition we will examine: 

  1. History and cultural significance of specific foods 

origins, traditional use and preparation methods, unique cultural significance 

example: black pepper

  1. Nutrition science and the 7 +1 main nutrient classes (Water, Fibre, Macro’s – 3 – protein, carbohydrates, fats, Minerals (12 – see highlighted)
  2. Top food sources of 32 + essential nutrients 
  3. Best research tools  
  4. Evaluating the spectrum of eating practices from vegan to meat based.
  5. Nutrient analysis: Health benefits, requirements, toxicity and deficiency where applicable
  6. Appropriate selection, storage and nutrient-rich preparation methods to maximize health benefits 

By the end of the course, each student will:

  • Develop an understanding of h​istorical and cultural relevance of specific foods 
  • Understand nutritional science and the 7 +1 main nutrient classes 
  • Source the top foods containing 32+ essential nutrients
  • Understand the significant therapeutic use of foods: applications, indications, contraindications and toxicity
  • Be able to make therapeutic meal plans based on nutrient rich foods
  • Evaluate the spectrum of eating practices for health benefits and risks (excess, deficiency, toxicity)
  • Learn how to maximize nutrient intake by understanding appropriate selection, storage, and nutrient-rich preparation methods.
  • Explore energetics and subtle properties of food from an eastern perspective (AYURVEDA, TCM) 

In addition to this, students will finish with an understanding of how to:

  • Apply nutritional information to prepare optimal and health-promoting food plans with confidence

Utilize the best research tools: Identify and utilize appropriate resources for research (monographs, articles etc)

Lesson plan

Section I | Welcome

1. Introduction

2. Course outline

Section II | Introduction to nutrient analysis & research

3. Best research strategies & sources

4. Food labels

5. Nutrient analysis

6. Dietary reference intakes

7. Food monographs

Section III | Plant-based eating: grains

8. General overview: grains

9. Oats (Avena sativa)

10. Barley (Hordeum vulgare)

11. Brown rice (Oryza sativa)

12. Nutrient-dense grains

13. Amino acids & protein

Section IV | Plant protein: beans & legumes

14. General overview: beans & legumes

15. Lentils (Lens culinaris or Lens esculenta)

16. Soybeans (Glycine max)

17. Lima beans (Phaseolus lunatus)

18.  Garbanzo beans (Cicer arietinum)

Section V | Traditional medicine cosmologies

19. General overview: nuts & seeds

20. Flaxseed (Linum usitatissimum)

21. Sesame seeds (Sesamum indicum)

22. Sunflower seeds (Helianthus annuus)

23. Peanuts (Arachis Hypogaea)

Section VI | Micronutrient powerhouses: vegetables

24. Overview: vegetables

25. Beet family (Amaranthaceae)

26. Asparagus (Asparagus officinalis)

27. Brassicaceae (cabbage family)

28. Sea vegetables

29. Mushrooms

Section VII | Phytonutrient power: fruits

30. General overview: Fruits

31. Berries (raspberries)

32. Cantaloup (Cumis melo var. cantalupensis)

33. Kiwi (Actinidia deliciosa)

34. Pineapple (Ananas comosus)

Section VIII | Spice of life: herbs & spices

35. General overview: herbs & spices

36. Parsley (Petroselinum crispum)

37. Basil (Ocimum basilicum)

38. Cilantro (Coriandrum sativum)

39. Clove (syzygium aromaticum)

Section IX: Milk & milk products

40. General overview: milk

41. Milk (cow, 100% grass-fed)

42. Yogurt (cow, 100% gradd-fed)

Section X: Eggs & poultry (pasture-raised)

43. Eggs (Chicken, pasture-raised)

44. Poultry (pasture-raised)

Section XI: Seafood: fish & shellfish

45. General overview: fish & shellfish

46. Tuna

47. Cod

48. Salmon

Section XII: Meat (100% grass-fed)

49. General overview: meat

Section XIII: Application

50. Designing therapeutic plans

51. Case studies

Section XIV: Course conclusion

52. Summary & conclusion