Holistic Nutrition Certificate Courses

Below is the list of Holistic Nutrition Certificate courses offered at Pacific Rim College.

Foundations of Holistic Nutrition (HNCP/NU101)

This course introduces students to the exciting world of whole foods nutrition and food as medicine. Students explore the attributes of foods and their properties in order to understand what to favour and to avoid in the presence of various pathological syndromes. Students also learn the role digestion plays in nutrition. Dietary philosophies from major medicinal lineages are discussed, including Traditional Chinese Medicine and Ayurveda. This course begins to build the framework and theory of food as treatment.

Prerequisites: – –    Hours: 45

Politics of Food (HNCP101)

The food industry is one of the largest and most powerful in the world. This course examines various positive and negative aspects of the industry, and looks at the environmental impact of the food choices that we make.

Prerequisites: – –    Hours: 15

Culinary Materia Medica (HNCP106)

This course surveys the therapeutic properties of some of the most widely available and nutrient-rich foods found in North America. As with plant Materia Medica, emphasis is placed on food monographs, surveying macro and micronutrients and their therapeutic applications.

Prerequisites: – –    Credits: 2    Hours: 30

Ayurveda 101 (HNCP107)

Ayurveda, Sanskrit for the “Science of Life/Longevity”, is a traditional medical system native to India dating back thousands of years. This course begins to introduce the general background and the foundational theory and philosophy of the science, particularly as it relates to diet therapeutics.

Prerequisites: – –    Credits: 1    Hours: 15

Intro to the 5 Elements (HNCP108)

In Chinese tradition, Five Elements is a system by which interactions within living beings and between living being and nature can be explored and explained based on general traits associated with the elements known as Wood, Fire, Earth, Metal and Water. Students begin to learn the history of the Five Element perspective within TCM and the fundamental characteristics of each element.

Prerequisites: – –    Credits: 1    Hours: 15

Systems in Sync: Nourishing Your Body Needs (HNCP109)

This course examines one’s own health through the lenses of the digestive, endocrine, nervous, cardiovascular and lymphatic systems. Each system overview includes an introduction to the system being discussed and symptoms of discomfort related to that system. Additionally, the top nutritional, supplemental, and lifestyle supports are introduced. Students examine and assess their own needs during this interactive weekend class.

Prerequisites: – –    Credits: 1    Hours: 15

Safe Supplementation (HNCP110)

This course examines the most commonly used dietary supplements including vitamins, minerals and some herbs. Students examine lifestyle habits and physiology that may cause imbalances and nutrient deficiencies.

Prerequisites: – –    Credits: 1    Hours: 15

Herbal Nutrition (NU/WHS116)

Students learn the basics of herbal medicine and build relationships with a wide range of medicinal plants, learning botanical descriptions, history and medicinal uses, as well as nutritional value and culinary applications. Students also learn how to harvest fresh herbs, formulate medicinal teas, tinctures and oils, and how to apply these medicinally and in cooking. The course includes lectures as well as live cooking and product making demonstrations.

* Please note this course is not recommended for Diploma of Phytotherapy students or Community Herbalist Certificate program graduates due to crossover in course content.

Prerequisites: – –    Credits: 3    Hours: 45

Professional Cooking (NU111)

Both Online and In-Person formats:


Join Chef Heidi Fink for a 14-week Professional Cooking experience from the comfort of your very own kitchen. Over the 14 sessions you will learn the fundamentals of cooking, kitchen safety, knife skills, recipe development, menu development, and more. We will cover the foundations of cooking, expanding to international cuisines, as well as how to cook and develop recipes for allergy-free meals. Throughout the course we will discuss and learn about the history and culture of various cuisines, ethical food issues, organic vs local, wild vs farmed, sustainable agriculture, food allergies and restrictions, cooking and eating fads, and more. Please note that for this virtual offering, grocery lists will be sent out in advance allowing you to participate directly by creating a dish alongside Chef Heidi in each class. As such, a small amount of your time will be required outside of the course hours in preparation of each weeks offering.


Join Chef & Herbalist Michelle Quintal for a 14-week Professional Cooking experience. Curriculum is structured to teach important recipes to enhance maximum versatility when preparing meals for future clients. Focus is on a wide-variety of cultural flavour pairings to ensure clean-recipes are of culinary art quality. Syllabus topics include: knife skills, herbal vinegars and oils, main course meals and finishing preparations (sauce, tapenade, pesto) that address a wide variety of health considerations. Baking, nut mylks and basic culinary business skills are also covered. This offering includes two local field trips to learn more about the food justice and sustainability climate in downtown Victoria. The course has a $20/class fee for each cooking class to cover the cost of food supplies. Working in pairs, each student will have a meal to enjoy within each class or to take home.

Prerequisites: – –    Credits: 3    Hours: 45

Fungal Foods and Mushroom Medicines (NU131)

This course touches on a wide range of topics related to kingdom fungi, such as identification, harvesting, history, cultivating medicinal and culinary mushrooms, and myco-remediation techniques. Students gain an understanding of the many uses and benefits of mushrooms.

For this online weekend workshop, we make it as hands-on, and interactive, as possible. Students are encouraged (though not required), to head to their local health food store, grocery store, or herbal dispensary to find some mushroom foods and medicines to use in the planned tasting and cooking demonstrations. Additional instructions are sent out one (1) week prior to the start of this class.

Learning Objectives:

Students gain familiarity with:

  • Identification
  • Safety
  • Materia medica and nutrition
  • Cultivation
  • Culinary and Medicinal preparation
  • As well as a wider view of mushrooms’ part in our bodies and the planet

Prerequisites: – –    Credits: 1    Hours: 15

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