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Course Description

In a world of conflicting food messages, how do we know which foods are good for us? What is the evidence for why you might want to incorporate foods like leafy greens, beans and berries more often into the meals you prepare? How do you construct a menu that tastes good, meets the nutrient and health requirements for an individual or group, and is culturally appropriate and responsibly sourced?

Planning and implementing healthy meals for customers, clients, family, and friends can pose a challenge. In this course we explore the relationship between diet and health by examining the habitual eating patterns that have been shown to prevent chronic diet-related conditions. We learn about the nutritional components of the foods and beverages commonly present in these healthy eating patterns and to implement strategies that will help those we serve make better food choices.

By the end of this course, you will be able to:

  • Describe healthful dietary patterns and summarize their common factors.
  • Identify the healthful properties of foods, how to responsibly source those foods, and how preparation influences their properties.
  • Create a healthful dish based on principles of maximizing flavor while mitigating chronic disease risk.


  • Week 1: Defining a Healthy Diet
  • Week 2: Health Properties of Foods: Fruits, Vegetables, & Grains
  • Week 3: Health Properties of Foods: Sources of Fat & Protein
  • Week 4: Health Properties of Foods: Dairy, Dairy Alternatives, & Beverages
  • Week 5: Smart Substitutions
  • Week 6: Accommodating Different Needs

Course Format:

  • 6 weeks to complete
  • 2 - 4 Hours a Week (Watch videos, take quizzes, and post to discussion forums)
  • 100% Online (Asynchronous – anywhere, anytime)
  • A “Letter of Completion” will be emailed to students who satisfactorily complete all of the required discussion forum assignments and correctly answer at least 90% of all quiz questions presented throughout the six weekly course modules, and no later than two weeks after the end of the session in which they are enrolled. 

Contact the Program Director at

Featured Faculty:

Alice Lichtenstein, D.Sc.
Link to biography -

Paul Jacques, D.Sc.
Link to biography -

Tim Griffin, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Link to biography -

Nicola McKeown, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Link to biography -

Diane McKay, Ph.D., F.A.C.N.
Assistant Professor
Link to biography -

Additional Lecturers: Lara Hyde, PhD; J. Philip Karl, PhD, RD; Nicole Schultz, PhD, MPH; Adriene Worthington, MEd, RDN, LDN; Alicia Romano, MS, RD, LDN; Brandon Lee, MS, RDN; Aaron Slader, MS, RD, LDN; Dustin Burnett, MS, RDN.

A sample syllabus for the course may be found here: UC NUTM01 Syllabus. An informational video can be viewed at this link: Serving a Healthy Diet Video.


Basic Enrollment Requirements: None.

Refund Policy: The refund policy for Courses at Tufts offerings is dependent on the offering type: whether the offering is a course, workshop or short course, or in-demand offering. Please refer to the section details to confirm the type of offering as well as any exceptions to the standard refund policy. The refund policies for each offering type are viewable here:

Remission Eligible: Not eligible.

Affiliated With:

  • Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy