Nutrition

MUCH OF THE GLOBAL BURDEN of disease is related to inadequate intake of calories, micronutrients, or certain food groups like fruits, vegetables, meats, nuts, and seeds. Additional burden of disease is associated with excessive intake of the wrong foods. Global food demand has never before increased more rapidly, and the biophysical conditions that underpin our global food production system have never been changing so rapidly. As a result, humanity is enormously vulnerable to health impacts from environmental change mediated through changing access to nutrition.

Learning Objectives
L1: Describe sociocultural, economic and environmental impacts on human nutrition.
L2: Explore the relationship between land use, agriculture, and health.
L3: Examine human food production and consumption patterns in comparison with demographic shifts.
Teaching Resources
The Future of Food
The Future of Food is an undergraduate introductory-level science course that emphasizes the challenges facing food systems in the 21st century, including issues of sustainability, resilience, and adaptive capacity, and the challenges posed by food insecurity and modern diets to human health and well-being.
Alliance.
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Simulation Exercises Teaching Clinical Skills and Knowledge of the Health Effects of Climate Change
This resource presents eleven simulation exercises. Students are eager to learn clinical skills, and existing curricula offer a range of simulated standardized patients and other active learning exercises that could be modified to provide training on climate change.
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Urban Health Disparities Syllabus
This Howard University course provides students with a foundation for understanding how history, power, privilege and structural inequality interact to produce urban health disparities. It looks at the advantages and disadvantages of urbanization on both physical and mental health and the root causes of racial and ethnic disparities in health and healthcare.
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Climate Change and Health
(L2, L3) Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health podcast shares an in-depth conversation about the effects of climate change and the steps we can take to reduce the damage.
→ The podcast
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The Role of Sustainably Managed Seascapes/Landscapes in Health and Nutritional Outcomes
'The Role of Sustainably Managed Seascapes/Landscapes in Health and Nutritional Outcomes' is a 12-minute video by Dr. Chris Golden that explores how improved ecosystem management could positively affect nutrition, highlighting examples such as the role of pollinators in food production.
→ Watch the video

Nutrition on a Rapidly Changing Planet
"Nutrition on a Rapidly Changing Planet" is a 35-minute recording of a lecture by Sam Myers for the Spring 2018 Harvard University undergraduate course: Planetary Health: Understanding the human health impacts of accelerating environmental change
→ Watch the video

Health Impact Assessment of Global Environmental Change
This undergraduate level course will provide students with tools to identify and address real-world global environmental and urban health issues. In addition to reading and discussing subject content to assist in understanding of the issues, students will learn skills to optimize the likelihood of affecting policy change through: 1) the Health Impact Assessment framework; 2) an introduction to environmental health modeling and spatial analysis; and 3) science communication skills. University of Wisconsin-Madison, Spring 2017.
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Ecosystem Approaches to Health Teaching Manual
A teaching manual with sample modules and associated activities for teaching about health and environmental change produced by COPEH-Canada.
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Español 
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Navigating Coast Decision-Making: Using Shellfish Aquaculture as a Model for Socio-Ecological Knowledge Development
This multi-class period case study uses the challenges of siting an oyster aquaculture facility to expose students to the range of ecosystem processes and stakeholder interests at play in coastal areas, while also providing a sense of policy and management decision-making. Through concept mapping, stakeholder assessments, and mock negotiation, students will explore oyster aquaculture as a complex socio-ecological system that is indicative of many coastal systems. Produced by the National Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center.
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How I Fell in Love With a Fish
(L1, L2, L3) This TedTalk tells a love story for a fish that originated in Argentina on a farm that was created by flooding and restoring a natural ecosystem. As overfishing and current aquaculture practices are highly unsustainable, a proposal to use natural relationships in an ecological model to produce more sustainable fish for food is presented.
→ Watch the video 

Global Food Politics and Policy
This Harvard Kennedy School course reviews the political landscape of food and farming, in both rich and poor countries. The course delves into nutrition circumstances that differ as well, as persistent hunger is still a deadly challenge in many tropical countries, while in rich countries, particularly the United States, excessive food consumption and obesity are now a more prominent diet- linked challenge to health.
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Drought and War Heighten Threat of Not Just 1 Famine, but 4
(L2, L3, L4) In Somalia and other African countries suffering from drought and famines, lack of clean water and proper hygiene are behind massive outbreaks of communicable diseases in displaced-persons camps. Water sources that dry up in droughts cause an interlocking cycle of death more and more arrive at camps; clean water is much more important for food than survival.
→ Read more

Why Agricultural Diversity Matters to Public Health: The Marsden Farm Study
(L2, L3, L4) This article reports on a 2012 study by Iowa State University that suggests better integration of animal and plant systems can dramatically decrease health issues caused by industry-scale agriculture, mainly groundwater pollution from fertilizers, herbicides, and manure.
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Malnutrition and Fish Catch Decline
(L1, L2, L3, L4) This NPR article reports on commentary in Nature from Dr. Chris Golden and co-authors about the risk of micronutrient deficiencies in regions dependent on fish for food. Nutrients from fish cannot easily be replaced in diets, and fish catch rates globally are declining.
→ Read more

Urban Farming: Fixing the Broken Food System & Improving Health
(L2, L4) This TedX talk explores how the current food system produces many negative environmental and health issues. Paul Myers speaks about his health research and startup, Farm Urban, that promotes the use of aquaponics and hydroponics food production systems to inspire people to connect with the environment and make more informed choices.
→ Watch the video

Biodiversity and Health
(L1, L3, L4) This brief report explores the link between biodiversity and human health in medicinal contributions, food security, infectious diseases, green spaces and urban biodiversity, uncertainties and complexities, and policy implications.
→ Teaching tool
Research
Articles