Graduate Program in Nutrition and Longevity

A long and healthy life depends on genetic and environmental factors, as well as on lifestyle habits. Diet quality in different life cycles influences the prevention or treatment of diseases related to human aging and healthy metabolism. The Graduate Program in Nutrition and Longevity addresses the concept of longevity as the long duration of a healthy life. The Program endorses physiological theories for aging ranging from birth to mature age. The studies address different factors that can determine longevity such as the role of nutrients and other food components, eating habits, eating practices, and policies related to food.


General Structure of the Program

Graduate Program in Nutrition and Longevity

Level: Master

Modality: Academic (by attendance)

Area: Health Sciences – Nutrition

This course accepts professionals from all areas of knowledge

General Organization and Academic Structure:

The Master in Nutrition and Longevity has a minimum duration of 12 (twelve) months and a maximum of 24 (twenty-four) months.

Students must complete a minimum of 40 credits (01 credit = 15 hours), as follows:

I – Mandatory classes: 06 credits;

II – Optional classes: minimum of 16 credits;

III – Teaching activity: 02 credits

IV – Research activity: 16 credits

Research lines


Line 1. Nutrition in human metabolism and aging

This line encompasses studies on food and nutritional aspects of different life cycles related to metabolic and inflammatory signaling pathways associated with longevity and the most prevalent chronic diseases in old age.

Line 2. Food and Longevity

This line encompasses studies on characterization and quantification of bioactive compounds and evaluation of their bio-functional properties, especially phenolic compounds, amines, proteins and peptides. The line includes studies for the development of products and food formulations aimed at promoting and maintaining health. Also, studies of foods that meet the demands of the elderly in their sensory aspects and nutritional needs are part of this line.



Knowing Program’s Professors


Classes and Content:


Class Content Number of credits
Research methodology and scientific writing (mandatory) Conceptual bases and characteristics of the scientific method. Ethics and bioethics in research. Quantitative research. Qualitative research. Mixed methods. The writing of scientific work: plagiarism, self-plagiarism, dissertation, articles (review, reflection, original research). Bibliographic research. Search in databases. 03
Lectures in Nutrition and Longevity (mandatory) Lectures on relevant topics of research applied to Nutrition and Longevity, given by Professors of the Program and invited researchers. Presentation, analysis and discussion of master’s projects. 02
Didactic and Pedagogical Aspects of Higher Education in Health (mandatory) Theoretical-methodological bases of the teaching and learning. Pedagogical approach in higher education in health. Teaching and Lesson Plans. Active methodologies of teaching and learning. Learning assessment. 02
Nutrition and Metabolic Health for Longevity Physiological processes associated with nutrient metabolism. Metabolic health. Inflammation and metabolism associated with metabolic health in aging. Food and nutrition related to metabolism modulation and chemoprevention for longevity. 04
Bioactive compounds of foods and nutraceutical Food compounds with bioactivity. Main categories of components with health promotion activity. Total phenolics, flavonoids, hydroxycinnamic acids, polyamines, peptides. Anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer properties, enzyme inhibitors, cardioprotective and chemoprotective effects. Action mechanisms. Dose-response. Bioavailability, bio-accessibility, influence of the food matrix and food synergy. Functional foods and nutraceuticals. Databases of bioactive food components. 04
Biostatistics Introduction and importance of statistics in science. Descriptive statistics. Probabilities and normal and binomial distribution. Statistical inference, construction and interpretation of confidence interval for mean and proportion. Sample size. Hypothesis test for mean, proportion, variance, and for mean differences. Introduction to Analysis of Variance (ANOVA). Correlation and Regression. Model validation methods. Nonparametric statistics. Fisher’s exact test, G test, and Chi-square. Relative Risk and Odds Ratio. 04
Nutrition in Geriatrics and Gerontology Concepts in Geriatrics and Gerontology. Physiological changes of aging. Multidimensional and nutritional assessment of the elderly. Nutritional recommendations and dietary interventions for healthy elderly people and those with geriatric syndromes. 04
Nutritional and Aging Epidemiology Concept of epidemiology and nutritional epidemiology. Nutritional transition. Demographic transition. Epidemiological methods for investigating the relationship between food, nutrition, and the health-disease process. Epidemiology of malnutrition and nutritional deficiencies. Epidemiology of obesity. Epidemiology of non-communicable conical diseases. Epidemiology of Aging. 02
Technology applied to the development of foods for special purposes Food for special purposes: law, risk and impact on health and longevity. Food technology in aging: texture, flavor, flavor, nutritional properties. Nutritional, bio- and techno-functional, sensory characteristics and toxic compounds. Substitutes for fat, salt, and sugar. Food additives with a focus on sweeteners: technological aspects and impacts on health and longevity. Development of new food products with bio-functional properties and/or for specific groups. 03
Analysis and characterization of bioactive compounds of foods Principles and methods for identification and quantification of food components with bioactivity. Methods for evaluating potential biological activities that positively impact human metabolism and cancer chemoprevention through in vitro, in vivo, ex vivo, and in silico. Comparison between methods. 02
Nutritional Genomics Nutritional genomics and methods. Dietary bioactive components to modulate epigenetic and genetic processes and genetic diversity in response to eating. Genetic-nutritional bases of chronic non-communicable diseases. Nutritional genomics at the interface of aging, longevity, and cancer prevention. Ethics in nutritional genomics. 03
Sensory analysis and sensorimetry Human physiology of the senses. Sensory analysis applied to the development and quality of food for special purposes. Test planning. Team selection and training. Affective methods. Discriminative methods. Descriptive methods. Radar chart. Preference maps (internal and external). Softwares: PanelCheck, SensoMineR, ConsumerCheck, Sensometriks, Power function. Correspondence Analysis. Check-All-That-Apply (CATA). Sorting. Napping. 03
Special Topics in Nutrition in Human Metabolism and Aging I, II or III Classes addressed to Nutrition in Metabolism and Human Aging (Line 1). These cover important topics for Master’s projects, which are not covered in other classes. 01-03
Special Topics in Food and Longevity I, II or III Classes addressed to Food and Longevity (Line 2). These cover important topics for Master’s projects, which are not covered in other classes. 01-03



The Federal University of Alfenas (UNIFAL-MG) has a Post-Doctoral Program that can be carried out in Graduate Programs with or without funding (i.e., scholarship).

There are two options to apply for the postdoctoral internship in the Graduate Program in Nutrition and Longevity.

  1. Applications without scholarship (i.e., voluntary) will be accepted in a continuous flow (i.e., at any time) as long as they are in accordance with university specific resolution ( The research project must be related to the Program’s research lines. The candidate must select a professor from the program who must previously accept to be the supervisor. Application documents (check at: must be attached to SEI ( and sent to the coordination of the Graduate Program in Nutrition and Longevity.
  2. Scholarship applications will be published on this website when funding becomes available.

More information: here

Academic Support Section

Office secretary: Mrs. Viviane Macedo Borges

Schedule for students: Monday to Friday from 1h30min pm to 4h30min pm

Address: Building R, room R200 A


Phone: +55 (35) 3701 -9268



Professor Olga Luisa Tavano (coordinator)


Phone: +55 (35) 3701 9743

Professor Fernanda de Carvalho Vidigal (vice-coordinator)


Phone: +55 (35) 3701 9742 OR +55 (34) 3701 9745