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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Stanford Introduction to Food and Health by Stanford University

4.7
stars
22,373 ratings
6,637 reviews

About the Course

Around the world, we find ourselves facing global epidemics of obesity, Type 2 Diabetes and other predominantly diet-related diseases. To address these public health crises, we urgently need to explore innovative strategies for promoting healthful eating. There is strong evidence that global increases in the consumption of heavily processed foods, coupled with cultural shifts away from the preparation of food in the home, have contributed to high rates of preventable, chronic disease. In this course, learners will be given the information and practical skills they need to begin optimizing the way they eat. This course will shift the focus away from reductionist discussions about nutrients and move, instead, towards practical discussions about real food and the environment in which we consume it. By the end of this course, learners should have the tools they need to distinguish between foods that will support their health and those that threaten it. In addition, we will present a compelling rationale for a return to simple home cooking, an integral part of our efforts to live longer, healthier lives. View the trailer for the course here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z7x1aaZ03xU...

Top reviews

CS
Aug 26, 2019

Very informative and useful. I'm from India and I look forward to study more about nutritional values of different foods. This course gave me a head-start and information to pursue my goal. Thank You!

NF
Dec 5, 2020

Foods and us have a relationship, and this course defines that relationship. Personally, this course provides positive experience for me in regards of food, meal preparation, and eating in moderation.

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6501 - 6525 of 6,643 Reviews for Stanford Introduction to Food and Health

By Brooke A L

Jan 11, 2018

While the information provided was helpful in some cases, I highly disagree with the staff behind this writing that veganism is, quote, "the least sustainable method" as a food solution. That's simply untrue to say; that spreads misinformation about the lifestyle choice, and only further encourages people to not consider it for themselves. I understand trying to be reasonable, as the common western citizen consumes meat and dairy and God forbid you hurt anyone's feelings, but there is no need to spread mistruths for the sake of saving someone's feelings. Overall it was a good course, and I'm grateful to have learned something through Stanford, I just disagree with a lot of the information presented within the course (namely, that veganism is unsustainable and that fish is safe, and furthermore nutritious to eat - spoiler, it really isn't, and overfishing is a serious issue that this course seems to mention nothing of at all when discussing it as a food choice). Plus, a lot of what was discussed, I was already educated on. So I sincerely wish it was more in-depth, thorough, and more respectful to dietary/lifestyle choices outside of the omnivore perspective. Thank you to both the Stanford and Coursera communities for providing this course as a tool to better health and wellness in this world that often makes it feel almost impossible.

By Claudia B

Apr 30, 2020

I’m studying nutrition from a while now and I’m following who for me are the bests doctors and there are many info that are not exactly what I aspected... I’m more towards the vegan diet for the health benefits first but not only and seeing what you do advise to eat make me wander if there are some other interests apart from health that bring you to create a course structured like it is..

I watched only the first recipe about crepes just because I thought was part of the course and I would never personally give that to my kids! Eggs, milk, sugar, butter 😱😱😱

Anyway, I will not spend the money for the certificate only to be able to say that I studied a Stanford’s course..... and I will probably not advise to anyone this course unlikely.

I just think that we have to know better and dr.Dean Ornish, Micheal Gregor, Neal Bernard and many more demonstrated that cure, prevention and reversing diseases is possible with a low fat vegan diet so I don’t understand why at the begin of the course you mention that the science is not sure yet about the best diet yet......... there are no doubts about what is the best, but often is not comfortable for the single person and for sure isn’t for the big industry!

By Sophia T

Oct 11, 2021

The course, unfortunately, was rather disappointing. It is super basic and superficial (only week 1 and half of week 2 were actually useful), and looks rather like a cooking course then nutrition (week 5 is purely cooking recipes and week 4 is supermarket shopping advices). It doesn't cover anything beyond carbs-fats-proteins on the most basic level. In other words, there will be no explanation of the difference between cooking oils or why we actually need different-coloured veggies, nothing about fruits or other nutrients. I didn't really understand the target auditory, cause there is an example case of middle-aged pre-diabetic man, while at the same time a whole week is dedicated to shopping and cooking advices for dummies who have never cooked pasta and cannot manage supermarket shopping. Lastly, the term "western diet" is often used, though the course is focused on the US only and not Europe, not to confuse. Same applies to statistics provided in the course, trends and eating habits (e.g. US people are eating non-home cooked meals more often compared to rest of the world, which entangles whole set of issues and ways to fix them).

By Aeryn K

Jun 5, 2016

The very first lesson implies that sufficient quantities of micronutrients can't be obtained from a diet high in animal-based proteins and fats. In reality, organ meats and egg yolks are higher in micronutrients than many fruits and vegetables, and only small amounts of dark-colored veggies and fruits are required to balance a diet that already contains a variety of meats (as far as both species and cut). The body is also better able to synthesize glucose (or utilize ketones instead of glucose to fuel cell function) than to synthesize amino acids, which are more easily obtained in the correct amounts from animal sources. Plant-based diets work for some people, but if blood sugar levels, chronic inflammation and/or amino acid intake are issues that an individual needs to take into careful consideration, a high-fat, low-carb, diet with a variety of animal products is more likely to meet their needs.

By Carmen C

Mar 6, 2018

If you know literally NOTHING about nutrition this is a good place to start, if you however have any sort of understanding of fats, protein and carbs, even the knowledge of what they are, on a broad scale, then you probably already know more than this course will teach you.

It was a good reminder of healthy eating nonetheless.

The recipes in the last module were good, but as someone who doesn't care much for sweet stuff it left me kinda bummed. I wished there were more main meal recipes rather than recipes to cook all your favorite desserts in a gluten free way. I know they had to plug Grokker and get that shameless self-promotion, I am not opposed to that, but they could have chosen more diverse recipes.

If you are trying to get people to eat healthier you should give them something quick and easy, not a recipe for pancakes that takes 4 different kinds of flours.

By Anna J

Jun 20, 2017

I live in the Czech republic (central Europe) and I didn't learn anything new about nutrition in this course. I know it all, from my mother and my grandmother and, well, we all know it should by like this, not saying it IS like this :-) but for me this course was very interesting as a "sociological research". Are there really people who don't know that home cooking is healthier than highly processed fast food? Are there people who don't know how important vegetable is? Very often I was just thinking "are you kidding me or is this the real life in the US?"

By HECTOR M M V

Jun 17, 2020

Hi everyone! I respect the work behind this course, but I feel it is very basic and superficial. I used to cook everyday and most of the things that were mentioned I read them on short articles. I believe that the course may be good for people with unhealthy habits or limited knowledge about food.

Honestly, I was expecting deeper scientific-related information with information that could teach me to calculate portions according my weight or body shape and understand the effects of certain proteins, carbs, fats, vitamins, etc. on my body.

By saylee

Jul 22, 2021

Very Generic course. Not so impressive. The only interesting part was about reading and understanding the labels on the packaged food items correctly, and the quiz which is thoughtfully created. The recipes demonstrated at the end of the course, look very much heavy with rich ingredients. The recipes should be chosen which are more organic, simple and without much of the preparation or efforts. The reference book list seems to be interesting and worth giving a try.

By Nathaniel C

Apr 19, 2020

Very light on information, targeted towards weight loss. A few useful points, but the entire course can basically be boiled down to "cook your own food, not too much, mostly plants."

Do not watch if you're bulimic or anorexic as they don't seem to understand that the maxim should actually be "cook your own food, not too much *or too little*, mostly plants"

Oh and it's quite twee and middle class - quite a few "simple" recipes involving flax seeds, that kind of shit.

By aliya b

Oct 17, 2017

Great, but takes much more time, than could be.

It would be the same to find 20-min recording of a good educational TV-channel programme.

Stanford in title doesn't refer to any academical sense, but to time relevance and confidence (and activity of Stanford food policy institute).

Has regional specifics (fats, obesity, how to use (keep in hand) knife).

Recommend only if you like to take a brake learning engineering or linear models on coursera.

By Irene S

Aug 25, 2017

Very well made, but waaaaay too easy, not enough information and more of a first session at your nutritionist without the personalised information - for someone who has never ever showed an interest in nutrition before. Especially the choice as Michael Pollan as the only "expert" invited by the main host to join is very questionable. I would have liked to have more detailed information and real experts of nutrition and not writing.

By Catie M

Sep 8, 2020

Very, very basic. Already knew everything they talked about. Chances are you've heard a lot of the adages and advice included in this course. Felt more like a self-help "how to eat better" course and less of a course on actual nutrition. Was hoping for a bit more depth. Like when you say "Different color vegetables have different nutrients" - spell those out. Disappointed. I'm surprised this is considered a college level course.

By Sylvia T

Nov 3, 2017

This is, indeed, a very basic, introductory course. There are the usual misconceptions, e.g. low-fat is good, saturated fats are bad, and the gluten-free recipe made me laugh. This is coming from someone who has been on a 100% gluten-free diet, including what I put on my skin.

If you, like me, have been doing a Paleo, Whole Food or AIP diet and know that animal fats are actually good for you, this course will be a waste of time.

By Barbara S

Jun 2, 2020

This is not really an online course on food an health but a series on videos on eating and cooking. Interesting, but nothing new. And very much only US centered (e.g. supersize etc.). Living and eating in Europe this was not targeted. I liked the videos but it was way too basic (move more, eat less processed foods). I was expecting more from Stanford. This was a level which should be tought starting elementary school.

By Babett K

Aug 31, 2020

Had some helpful insights but very U.S.-centric and very heavy focus on eliminating processed foods instead of talking about general nutrition/health. Should not be labeled as a course on "health and nutrition", as you don't really learn a lot about either. Instead 80% of the course is spend emphasising the importance of substituting processed food with fresh ingredients without actually going into very much detail.

By Giacomo M

Jul 6, 2018

Probably my delusion has been caused by different kind of expectation: nothing about this course is "wrong" I just found it excessively simple and basic, perhaps directed to a public that never took a knife and cut some vegetables before. I was hoping in some more technical information, and nutritional biology.. it looked more like a well made commercial for a healthy life stile.

By Luke R

Jan 13, 2019

Perhaps helpful for someone looking to change their western diet for health reasons. However, I wouldn't recommend this course for anyone feeling like they will gain a dense (even introductory) knowledge of the science within nutrition. The first week has some insight that was new to me, but everything after was just about how to change your diet, shop and eventually recipes.

By Ciaran M

Jan 29, 2021

I expected the course to be based on findings from science and research; to hear from a nutritionist or a medical doctor with a background in nutrition. Instead much of the material seems to be based on the opinion of a professor of journalism, a man who believes that it is "very hard to get fat on home-cooked food." I remained to the end, and so did my disappointment.

By EDITH V P

Jan 11, 2019

The course is very clear, has really good information, in general everything was great until I finished the week 4, then the next day I wanted to follow with week 5 "cooking workshop" but I couldn't because the course was labeled as "finished" and now I cannot see the cooking videos, I can only see the videos for week 1 and the others are not available.

By HM

Feb 23, 2016

This is less of a university level course and more of a long infomercial for Michael Pollen books with a cooking show at the end.

There is no interviews with nutritionists or scientists. In fact, there really isn't much here in the way of science at all.

The cooking videos are fun with some good recipes.

By Deniz Ö

Mar 27, 2017

It is a kind of introduction course as it was mentioned on course info, however it is very basic.

If there would be follow up courses about the same topic it is a good start, otherwise that is not a learning based lecture.

Thank you for your understanding.

Deniz Ozalp

By Andy C

May 4, 2020

While this is a helpful class to those learning the basics of how food affects your health, it does little to expand on the science behind these things. It seemed more like an infomercial for healthy eating than a class to understand how food affects your health.

By A

Sep 5, 2018

Aside from the recipes presented in Week 5, the course is very general and in my opinion does not teach valuable information about nutrition.

The advices that were given concerning choices in nutrition are very basic and in my opinion they are common knowledge.

By Susana C M

May 9, 2017

Weak courses, information very obvious. You don´t even need to watch the videos to pass the assignments. Maybe American lifestyle is not so healthy, but I thought it was a waste of time and money. It is indeed just an introduction. I wouldn't recommend it

By Deleted A

Jan 29, 2018

In my opinion this course not help me as a doctor to know about diet,calories,regems,the calories of each ingredient i find this information is simple and every one can recognize it i want more medical information that help me to work in nourishment