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Deakin University

Food and Mood: Improving Mental Health Through Diet and Nutrition

Deakin University via FutureLearn


Learn how healthy dietary choices can improve your mental and brain health

Poor diet and poor mental health are the leading causes of mortality and morbidity worldwide. We now know that diet quality is a modifiable factor that is linked to mental and brain health across all stages of our lives.

We will explore how our daily diets may affect our mental and brain health, including the role of our immune system and gut microbiome.

The course will provide research evidence, practical examples, skills development, and collaboration on dietary intake assessment, strategies and resource sharing for dietary change.

This course is designed for anyone with an interest, or with experience of, good or bad mental health.

This is an introductory course which might be of interest to healthcare practitioners working with people with mental and brain health issues or in roles related to diet, nutrition and mental and brain health education.


  • Diet and nutrition in mental and brain health
    • Welcome to Food and Mood
    • Defining diet and mental health
    • Why we eat what we eat
    • Weekly wrap up
  • Understanding the mechanisms
    • Welcome to Week 2
    • Mechanisms of action
    • Dietary intake and gut health: what is the evidence?
    • Weekly wrap up
  • Changing the diet to manage mental health
    • Welcome to Week 3
    • Modified Mediterranean diet for mental and brain health
    • Planning and implementing dietary change
    • Course wrap up

Taught by

Tetyana Rocks


4.8 rating, based on 11 Class Central reviews

4.6 rating at FutureLearn based on 764 ratings

Start your review of Food and Mood: Improving Mental Health Through Diet and Nutrition

  • Anonymous
    A professional and evidenced-based course. Informative overviews of scientific concepts and research in the area, presented in an easy to understand, engaging and pragmatic way. The content was arranged in a way that led the learner on an interactiv…
  • Anonymous
    The course was presented over three weeks. The length of each module was good as there was just enough to absorb. Articles, videos ,tasks and reflection. Also a chance to see other participants experience and thoughts. And to share one's own thoughts as well. I came to this course as my interest was caught by the link between food and mental health and I enjoyed the learning process. Looking at food for health and wellbeing rather than just weightloss. It has empowered me to keep the learning process going.
  • Anonymous
    Liked the way the course has been designed. It starts by an introduction of diet and mental health then proceed to introduce the foundation of nutrition before leading participants to the research and factors that proves the how eating habits influence the gut that in turns impact the mental well being. The structure made it easy for a novice like me to follow the content. Am glad I took the time to attend this course.
  • Anonymous
    An excellent, evidence based course that ties together nutrition and both physical and mental health. The discussion forums have been an added help with a great deal of positive interaction between students and mentors. The course mentors have been involved throughout, giving advice and much encouragement. I have taken many online courses. This is one of my favourites.
  • Anonymous
    I found this course to be very informative, with a lot of complicated information simplified for ease of delivery, but not overly simplified. For more in-depth learning there are in-text links to dozens of peer reviewed studies. I learned a lot for myself, but also feel I can take this information into further learning.
  • Anonymous
    A very interesting and enjoyable course based on the latest nutritional research. Tetyana is an excellent leader and facilitated this course to a very high level. The course has motivated me to study further and I have also used some of the helpful tips/practical ideas to initiate small sustainable changes in my own diet and that of my family. Highly recommended!
  • Anonymous
    Well put together and presented, additional material relevant to what was discussed, including research, study papers. Good flow of content. Engagement on the part of Lead Presented very welcomed and motivational.
  • Anonymous
    Fascinating insight into the connection between what we eat and how we feel. Has helped me reflect on some of the choices that I make.
  • Anonymous
    This course contained invaluable course material and was presented really well. I loved every minute of it and will continue to build on the knowledge gained for my health coaching practice. I appreciated every post from the course facilitators as well as my fellow learners.
    The videos were clear and well presented and the additional research references provided excellent additional information.
    If you re interested in the effect of nutrition on cognitive behavior and mood, this is a course you can not afford to miss out on.
  • Ms Glennis Wood
    Why 4 only? To encourage course development to reflect any comments & questions made by participants for future Food & Mood course. I'm a hard marker but never give 10/10 etc. as this stops the continued learning experience.

    I loved the freedom to explore the research, to contemplate my own situation of ill-health, to read &/or comment with others in different social & economic circumstances from all over the world.

    Diagrams, explanations, videos, comments, links - all pushed me clearly into the various topics.
  • Anonymous
    I cannot recommend this course highly enough and urge anyone interested in discovering how what we eat is linked to our brain. Food and mood is scientifically and clearly covered. The videos enhance understanding. There are many interesting links for further information.
    Contributions from fellow participants enhance understanding and sense of belonging .
    The exchange of recipes is the icing on the cake.

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