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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


4.4 rating, based on 307 Class Central reviews

Start your review of Nutrition and Cancer

  • A very nice class. Well organized and taught by researchers from a great institute. Still, I think, the name is misleading. There is not much direct information about nutrition and cancer, as the title suggests! There is a lot of information about...
  • A highly insightful course for anyone to pursue. This great course introduces most aspects from prevention to survival, and even on press reporting. Of great help for anyone to access information and research interests would be the topics on types...
  • I have benefited a lot from this course, and I hope to complete all the courses of your distinguished university.
    Many thanks to all the course workers and the university in general.
  • 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.
  • Karen Amedu
    it was good the things i learnt werent much but most of the stuff were interesting to learn , i learnt some things about cancer whch was iinteresting.
  • 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,...
  • Anonymous
    I have thoroughly enjoyed this course and have learned a lot both about the role nutrition can play in stacking the odds against developing cancer as well as how cancer research is conducted and recommendations are determined. Like most people, I read a lot of health related data and try to discern what is worth additional reading and what is 'hype'. After taking this course and understanding how studies are planned, developed and conducted, the challenges associated with them, and then how the results are interpreted .. I am not an expert but I certainly have a much better understanding of causal vs. associated.
    Thank you very much for putting on this MOOC. I have been sending it to many friends to enjoy and learn.
  • 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
    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

    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
    The course is clarifying about which scientific information is backed up by enough studies and which is not. This accomplish the urgent need of more research on cancer and diet. However, it was a little bit dissapointing for me as a cancer survival to learn about the gigant gaps on this type of knowledge.
    Anyway, the course is excellent to see where we are at and I want to thank you Wageningen University and edX to allow to learn about this course with both the free and the paid options.
    Thanks a lot and hope science goes further in this research! :)
  • 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
    This is a great course especially for those who want to learn more about nutrition in cancer. I have really enjoyed and learnt quite alot.
    I would like to make a suggestion though, I felt the content was very shalow for professionals in the oncology setting and the videos sounds more like they were directed to patients only. If you could consider having a richer content that covers medical nutrition therapy in oncology would be great!
  • Anonymous
    This course combines interest and passion. It is very interesting. Each unit we study makes us excited to move on to the next unit. It is useful for religious people dealing with cancer patients and for family members around them. It is also very useful for those who are passionate about knowing important information about nutrition and cancer. Thnx
  • Anonymous
    I think the course was informative and honestly a bit depressing all though not intentional. As a society with so many causal factors known, more public data on prevention is going to really help promote better health through lifestyle choices leading to a less costly medical dependent society.
  • Anonymous
    I highly recommend this course as it has provided me with valuable information and understanding about the relationship between food and cancer, both for prevention and during treatment. The course is very well-structured, and the lectures are designed to provide the main information effectively.
  • Anonymous
    There is a lot of information, brought in a very understandable way. The amount of knowledge clips is helpful in understanding the theory. Learners are encouraged to think for themselves and to perform additional literature search to answer the questions.
  • Anonymous
    This is an excellent course. I work in Biomedical Research at a U.S. university. The information offered in this course is right in line with the research papers I have read dealing with cancers and nutrition. I am thoroughly enjoying this course.

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