Whole Health Foundation Courses


“It’s no secret that traditional methods of patient education are hopelessly ineffective.”

Susan Edgman Levitan, Executive Director.
John D. Stoeckle Center for Primary Care Innovation
Massachusetts General Hospital
Associate in Health Policy at Harvard Medical School

NIWH Whole Health Education programs provides an evidence-based, scientific education which blends the most current medical research with natural health practices and holistic health principles.

The courses listed below – 24 Foundation Core Courses and 8 Case Study Tutorials – comprise the curriculum for all three of our Whole Health Education 3-in-1 certification programs. By taking a Whole Health Education 3-in-1 program, the learner earns credentials as a Whole Health Educator plus a Patient Health Advocate certificate and a Whole Health Coaching certificate.

Whole Health Foundation Courses

  • Inflammation and Disease – The body’s response to chronic chemical stress is inflammation. This inflammatory response, over time, results in various chronic and life threatening pathology and disease states. This course examines the causes of inflammation, its prevalence in disease states and how to prevent or reverse this condition.
  • Mindful Listening – Critical to the health care professional is the ability to mindfully dialog with their clients. Mindful listening and mindful speech are skills which we can develop through awareness and practice. This important two-part course explores how we can improve our communication in all our relationships.
  • Physics & Philosophy Part I & II – The study of Physics and Philosophy allows us to develop our own personal philosophy and better understand the viewpoints of others. The works of Einstein, Newton, Buddha, Maslow, as well as the Torah, Koran and other classic teachings, demonstrate how our beliefs, values and worldview influence our choices and the resulting outcomes. This knowledge offers greater insight into the views and values of others.
  • Brain Function and Nutrition – Understanding brain function is one of the most urgent issues facing health care professionals today to enable them to assist their patients with the cascade of neurological brain disorders being experienced in the U.S. These disorders include ADD, ADHA, autism, dementia, Alzheimer’s disease, senility, Parkinson’s disease, Multiple Sclerosis and a host of others. This course provides the cutting edge nutrition science being used to address these conditions.
  • Digestive Function and Nutrition – To possess an authentic understanding of human nutrition the role of digestion, absorption and assimilation, and how they relate to health and disease state, is critical. This course explores from an integrative whole picture perspective the structure and function of the digestive system and how it affects human nutrition.
  • Metabolic Syndrome – Metabolic Syndrome is a complex of hormonal and metabolic responses which lead to obesity, high blood pressure, increase risk for heart disease, type II diabetes and other syndromes. This course examines the mechanisms of metabolic syndrome and offers solutions for reversing and preventing this epidemic pathology.
  • Adrenal Function and Stress – The ability to adapt to change in the external and internal environments is the hallmark of human survival. This course presents the how and why of adaptation and provides an in-depth understand of adrenal function, its relationship to stress and immune function as well as the nutritional research from Hans Selye, M.D., PhD, which explains the body’s increased nutritional needs when under stress.
  • Psychology of Stress – This course identifies the nature of stress, the body’s response to stress in both acute and chronic stages and what specific physiological changes take place as a result of stress adaptation. This information can facilitate an individual’s understanding of how to avoid chronic stress and maintain wellness. Discussion topics include: the mind-immune link, principles of psychological conditioning and stress reduction techniques.
  • Obesity: Hidden Factors – This presentation looks beyond the problems of over eating and the lack of exercise as causes to obesity and examines the hidden causes contributing to the escalating rates of obesity seen today in the U.S. and around the globe. Nutritional as well as environmental factors are discussed. Statistics as well as information on how to reverse this disturbing trend is presented.
  • Nutrition: Food Biochemistry – This foundation course in food bio-chemistry, cell function and the role of vitamins and minerals is the basis of understanding nutrition science. This course provides a foundation for understanding “the big picture” of human nutrition. Discusses: chlorophyll, photosynthesis; fertile soil; vitamin function, mineral function, the function and importance of fats, proteins and carbohydrates. Designed to provide the learner with an authentic understanding of how human nutrition works on a cellular level.
  • The Immune System – This course describes the complexity of the immune system through a whole health perspective. This course also explores the role of vitamins, minerals and herbs in relationship to the immune system; the action of the thymus gland and spleen, as well as the role of exercise and diet in a healthy immune system. A clear, integrated understanding of immune function is valuable to enhancing health coaching outcomes.
  • Cultural Diversity – This course examines important areas of cultural differences, especially how they relate to and affect the delivery of health care for both the patient and the practitioners. Issues of how time is perceived, how grief is expressed, cultural nutrition, how religion affects culture, and much more is explored. This course is presented by two health care professionals, a physician and health educator, who are both from “third world” cultures.
  • Muscles and Bones – The goal of this course is to provide the learner with an integrated understanding of the physiology and function of muscles and bones. This understand will enhance your ability to educate and coach clients with musculo-skeletal conditions. The course offers a unique opportunity to explore beyond the anatomy of the skeletal system and understand the inter-relationships of the musculo-skeletal system with all body systems. The effects of environment on bones and muscles will also be discussed.
  • Introduction to Exercise Physiology I, II and III – Prepared with an understanding of exercise physiology, a chronically ill patient can enhance their quality of life. How the body reacts to acute as well as chronic stress is correlated with activities and corresponding exercises. The course presents principles of exercise physiology and application in patient recovery, along with the ways fitness induced changes allow for improved function of all body systems.
  • Brain Function and Behavior – This course provides an integrated overview of mind / body physiology and its influence on human behavior. It discusses brain function and the biochemistry of thoughts and emotion, as well as the body’s chemicals and structures which create unique behaviors. Theories and research into the neuro-behavioral sciences are also be discussed. This information will enhance health coaching tools and knowledge.
  • Nutrition Research on Chronic Disease – This presentation provides current research studies from around the world which demonstrate important information and data on the three major causes of death in the U.S. and around the world. Heart disease, cancer and type II diabetes data and research provide insights and clues into the prevention and nutritional treatment of these life threatening conditions.
  • Cardiac Whole Health – This class provides tools to enhance health, well-being and quality of life for those experiencing cardiac conditions. The impact of nutrition, emotions, the environment and spirituality on cardiac function and/or disease will be examined. The genesis of arteriosclerosis and the role of psychological states on cardiac function will be highlighted. This knowledge will allow greater insight into the development of wellness strategies for individuals with heart disease.
  • Living with Illness – For the individual experiencing illness, it is more than a diagnosis. Their illness is a life altering event that can be used for transforming their way of thinking, feeling and being. This course explores the experience of living with a chronic or life threatening illness and the opportunities it can provide for personal and spiritual growth.
  • Whole Person Nutrition Parts I & II – Although there is a basic nutritional requirement for all human beings, human nutrition practices and approaches vary greatly according to culture, geography, genetics, gender, religion, environment, age and many other factors which need to be considered when establishing a realistic perspective on nutrition. This course presents approaches, practices and research from a more global viewpoint. It also presents the nutritional research from Hans Selye, M.D., PhD, the “father of stress management,” which explains increased nutritional needs for the body under stress.
  • Functional Medicine – Functional medicine is a new paradigm for the practice of medicine. Grounded in a cause and effect model of problem solving health care, functional medicine explores health and wellness from a whole person, whole health perspective. The practice of functional medicine affirms the importance of approaching health care from a Whole Health Education model which educates the individual on the cause and effect of their disease state and what they can do to regain or maintain their health and wellness.

Whole Health Education Case Study Tutorials

  • Health Information Research – The importance of knowing how to identify and provide evidence-based, health information for a client they can feel comfortable sharing and discussing with their providers is presented and explained in this course. This presentation invites the learner to easily and confidently develop health information research skills that serve their clients and their clients providers. As shared decision making is a major focus of today’s health care reform, well researched health information can create a communication bridge between an individual and their provider
  • Peer Counseling – Today’s provider-client relationship is focused on peer-interaction and communication, rather than the traditional one-up, one-down “expert” – “patient” dialog. This course assists in transforming your understanding of how to provide more effective, respectful, whole person focused communication along with demystified health information.
  • Demystifying Medical Language – This fun filled course demystifies “the language of medicine” and enhances medical record keeping and patient/client communication for health professionals.
  • Behavioral Engagement with Pure Presence – Communication skills developed over 34 years of NIWH research within hospitals and medical centers. The subject of a multi-awarding winning, two-year running bestseller, Behavioral Engagement is currently the subject of seven (7) Pilot Studies across the country. Behavioral Engagement is changing the way individuals connect and communicate within healthcare, the business community and personal relationships.
  • Principals of Coaching Part I – This course introduces the history, roots, principals, tenants and function of coaching to lay a foundation of understanding for the application of coaching skills and competencies. A fascinating body of information that will prepare the learner for the second course in coaching, Principals of Coaching Part II.
  • Principals of Coaching Part II – A continuation of the first course exploring the coaching model of “The Gremlin” and “The Great”. This course includes Guided Centering, Being with Emotions, the Zen Theory of Change, Making Choices, Outing the Gremlin and other topics. The understanding of coaching that comes from this course can be applied to all schools and models of coaching.
  • The Wellness Inventory – NIWH is pleased to announce that the Wellness Inventory – an Interactive Self-Coaching program to Enhance Patient Outcomes – is now offered as part of the NIWH Communication and Whole Health Coaching Tutorials through our Educational Partnership with WellPeople.com. Developed by healthcare pioneer and visionary, John Travis, MD, MPH, this remarkable interactive online tool has been called “A Foundational Wellness Tool” by Stanford Research Institute.
  • Whole Health Advocacy – Patient Health Advocacy is on of the most essential components of today’s healthcare reforms. Providing individuals with information, facilitation and resources is a key aspect to enabling them to participate in shared decision making and to achieve discernment of their healthcare choices.

PLEASE NOTE: NIWH nutrition courses are patient/client education focused, providing epidemiological and evidence-base science on the how and why of nutrition in disease prevention, health recovery, wellness maintenance and for patient/client whole health education. Our whole foods focused nutrition courses are designed to enhance the professional’s knowledge of the science of nutrition but ARE NOT intended to teach learners how to recommend or prescribe diets or supplements to their patients or clients.

Unless a professional has a licensed scope of practice and credentials, along with professional liability insurance to practice nutrition, there are both legal and ethical constraints related to advising an individual about nutrition. The whole picture of heath® approach invites the client into understanding the cause and effect of the physical, emotional, nutritional, environmental and spiritual components of health so they can make the informed, sustainable lifestyle choices they deem are appropriate with their values and needs.

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