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Wageningen University

Nutrition and Cancer

Wageningen University via edX


Can cancer risk be reduced through a healthy diet or lifestyle? Many studies have been conducted on the role of nutrition and physical activity in cancer prevention. This has resulted in recommendations for cancer prevention. Far less research is conducted on nutrition and cancer progression, but the evidence is increasing that a healthy diet may also play a beneficial role for cancer survivors. Join this online course and learn more about the role of nutrition in the occurrence and progression of cancer. You will learn how nutrition is involved in cancer occurrence, cancer treatment, and progression. And you will discover what the evidence-base is for dietary guidelines.

This online course focuses on a wide range of dietary exposures (including vegetables, meat, dietary supplements, alcohol) and lifestyle factors (including body composition and physical activity) in relation to the occurrence and progression of the most common types of cancer, such as large bowel cancer, breast cancer, prostate cancer, and lung cancer.

For whom?

Dieticians and physicians often get questions from cancer patients about what they can do themselves to help their recovery process. After completing the course you will have gained a solid scientific basis to better weigh and interpret all the information available on nutrition and cancer and to take care of your own health and/or that of your patients.

This online course is especially valuable for professionals (in training) from various fields related to nutrition or cancer (e.g. nutritionists, epidemiologists, health policy makers, physicians, caregivers, nutrition educators, biologists and food scientists).

This course, is part of theNutrition and Disease Professional Certificate Program of Wageningen University & Research. Did you already complete Nutrition, Heart Disease and Diabetes? That is the other course in this Professional Certificate Program.


Module 1
Start with an introduction to the relation between nutrition and cancer development and progression, and discuss the different types of research designs by which this relation is studied.

Module 2
Discuss dietary and lifestyle risk factors related to cancer occurrence, by outlining the current WCRF/IARC evidence-based recommendations for cancer prevention.

Module 3
Learn about the interaction between nutrition and genes, and how this can influence cancer occurrence.

Module 4
Learn about the importance of dietary and lifestyle guidelines for the increasing group of cancer survivors.

Module 5
In this module you will learn about the adherence to guidelines and how important it is to have a clear and correct communication to the public. (This module is only accessible to verified learners.)

Taught by

Ellen Kampman, Fränzel van Duijnhoven and Dieuwertje Kok

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4.5 rating, based on 239 reviews

Start your review of Nutrition and Cancer

  • Not as extensive or carefully edited as the Cardiometabolic Disease class but still solid and full of compelling information.
  • You will learn about the Wold Cancer Research Fund (WCRF) recommendations for cancer prevention, the types of research in cancer and nutrition. There is additional learning in critically analysing media communication around nutrition and cancer. I did this course for personal growth as a cancer survivor - highly recommend!
  • Brilliant course, logical, interesting and assessments are good. Two of the video's glitched and took longer to play but that may have been my end? Thank you for such an interesting, research based and practical how to course.
  • Anonymous
    I appreciate all the helpful and interesting information taught in this course. Learning official guidelines from world organizations has been enlightening. I look forward to feeling equipped and joining the community of people working to make a difference...
  • Anonymous
    This course is very informative with the latest updates related to Nutrition and cancer and is a good learning experience as an online course. The lectures through videos with the script on the side is very useful in understanding the concepts explained,...
  • Anonymous
    The experience in taking part in this course has been awesome. Name like Prof. Ellen Kampman and Prof. Sanders Kersten, among others, will remain a household name in my practice. I have a burning desire to gain professional control over the growing syndemic...
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous is taking this course right now.

    This course is good but it should have a more information about what's to do with patients to give them a good advice about what they sohled eat , I want to know many examples about this and also this course does not have a practical part.
  • Anonymous
    The course was informative. I did however expect that there would be a deeper dive into the using nutrition and especially functional foods whether that is via Ayurvedics, botanicals and or orthomolecular medicine and understanding the mechanistic pathways...
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous is taking this course right now.

    Nutrition and cancer is a general course. It creates awareness about the importance and difficulties of nutrition in the process of cancer formation and treatment. The interaction of nutrition with genetic and epigenetic factors in cancer patients is...
  • Anonymous
    Great course that emphasized the importance and role of a healthy nutrition as a prevention tool against cancer and as an important component of a post-cancer treatment for those who were diagnosed and suffered from the disease. A lot of research...
  • Anonymous
    This course has a characteristic that I like a lot and it is: Didactic material, clear communication and understanding of the topics. It does not depart from its scientific character and the examples help to assimilate ideas and concepts more easily,...
  • Tetiana Melymuka
    This course completely lived up to my expectations. Because in my country there are no programs and courses where you can learn this information and receive appropriate training, to support all the continuous professional development in this area. All...
  • Anonymous
    Well structured and full of interesting material and information. I really liked the format fo video lessons alternated with more classical reading materials.

    The mini' exams' between modules are helpful, but sometime I found the questions trivial.

    I expected to learn more scientific information (even more than the ones the you have offered) and be stimulated to reflection. But I find that the format does not really encourage stimulation to reflection.

    I appreciate the efforts in involving the students in the discussions but I personally did not feel part of the discussions forum, even if I tried to.

    Thank you very much for your work !
  • Anonymous
    This course is a good resource to evaluate lifestyle, that is diet and exercise, with the development of cancer. It concentrates heavily on the type of studies conducted for research and we are introduced to overall outcomes of lifestyle and cancer prevention. There are several studies providing recommendations on diet and exercise in combination with cancer prevention. Unfortunately, there are no significant studies available yet to evaluate lifestyle questions during and after cancer treatment. This is a field that is very interesting and I hope to find a course in the future when more data is available.
  • Anonymous
    All over the course content was good. relation between diet and Cancer was well explained through research but it was so general. At this time everyone know general things just by googling it, better if you would be more specific about what type of diet is good because students who have studied earlier about nutrition know about what is high fiber food, etc but those students who don't know about this it becomes difficult for them to understand. for next time hope to find something deeper and exciting to learn.
  • Profile image for Dionne Bruce
    Dionne Bruce
    The course has got understandable lecture videos, discussion forums and a whole lot more making it quite fun.. Honestly,I think it's an interesting course and anyone who takes it would love it.
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous is taking this course right now.

    I am really enjoying this course! Through video explanation, discussion forum, and tasks makes it easier to understand. They did not use advance medical terms, so everyone can take the course. In addition, this course inspires me to conduct a research in this field someday. Maybe at the end of the course, we can get a mindmaping about nutrition related to cancer. I also find out that there is WCRF and they already published several guidelines due this issue. Its fun to do MOOC. Especially in the field that you like.
  • Anonymous
    The course material is easy to understand and gives students the most up-to-date scientific findings relating nutrition and cancer. It also teaches students how to search for scientific information on their own in the future. I like the subtitle along with the videos because I am a visual learner- reading the texts helped me to understand the context.
  • Roberto Cairoli
    Till now there is nothing regarding fasting and cancer . I'm curious about this topic.

    Another argument that is completely lacking so far , is "autophagy" with its implication in the treatment of degenerative diseases (almost in theory).

    In general the biological aspects/links are not fully elucidated.

    Finally, links to sientific papers are scanty.
  • Anonymous
    its a great topic and very interesting , and must all related health care providers or nutritionists know about it , and the public information is not enough aware about the details of this topic , I strongly recommend all of us know about how to be healthy in our feed and how we can support cancer patients and add value to their life .

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