Tufts OpenCourseware


  • Develop a foundation of nutrition knowledge.
  • Develop skills to assess the nutritional status of your patients.
  • Develop skills to counsel your patients on making lifestyle changes in eating habits to decrease risk of disease and to aid in treatment of disease.

1. Syllabus/Assignments

The lectures in the syllabus are set up chronologically according to the course lecture schedule. The small group materials follow the lecture materials, and are listed chronologically.

Assignments consist of:

  • For each lecture you are responsible for reading the Learning Objectives and Answers to the Learning Objectives, as well as any readings on the Reading List. Additional suggested readings are identified on the last page of the lecture materials.

  • Small Group Assignments.

    Grading Policy

2. Grading Policy

This is an Honors/Pass/Fail course.

3. Reading List

3.1. Lectures I & II: Nutrition Assessment

Nutrition Assessment article.

3.2. Lecture III: Macronutrients/Carbohydrates

Ludwig DS. The Glycemic Index: Physiological Mechanisms Related to Obesity, Diabetes and Cardiovascular Disease. JAMA . 2002;287:2414-23.

3.3. Lecture VII/VIII: Lipids/Cardiovascular Disease

Expert Panel on Detection, Evaluation and Treatment of High Blood Cholesterol in Adults (Adult Treatment Panel III). Executive Summary of the Third Report of the National Cholesterol Education Program (NCEF). JAMA . May 16, 2001; 285(19):2486-97. Only the section on diet is required reading. The remainder of the article is supplemental reading.

3.4. Lecture IX: Water Soluble Vitamins

" Clinical Applications of Vitamin B12 and Folate Metabolism " by Joel Mason.

3.5. Lecture X: Diabetes

Pittas AG. Nutritional interventions for prevention of type 2 diabetes and the metabolic syndrome. Nutr Clin Care . 2003;May-Sep;6(2):79088.

3.6. Small Group III: Nutrition and Cardiovascular Disease

Howard BV, et al. Low-fat dietary pattern and risk of cardiovascular disease: the Women's Health Initiative Randomized Controlled dietary Modification Trial. JAMA . 2006 Feb 8;295(6):655-66.

3.7. Small Group V: Nutrition and the Elderly

All four articles will be read and discussed during small group time, but students are responsible for the topics covered during small group for all articles.

  • Print out all of these papers and bring to small group.

  • Read the "clinical case" prior to the group.

Stage 1 - Osteporosis

  • Dawson-Hughes B. Calcium, vitamin D and risk of osteoporosis in adults: essential information for the clinician. Nutrition in Clinical Care. 1998;1:63-70.

  • Three pages (p.930-933) from: Shearer MJ. The roles of vitamin d and K in bone health and osteoporosis prevention. Proceedings of the Nutrition Society. 1997;56:915-97.

Stage 2 - Sarcopenia

  • Fiatrone Singh M, and Rosenberg IH. Nutrition and Aging. In: Hazzard WR, Blass JP, Ettinger, WH, et al., editors. Principles of Geriatric Medicine and Gerontology. Fourth edition. McGraw-Hill Professional. 1998. Chapter 6, p. 81-96.

Stage 3 - Vitamin B12

Baik HW and Russell RM. Vitamin B12 deficiency in the elderly. Ann Rev Nutr . 1999;19:357-77.

4. Supplemental Readings

4.1. Lecture VII/VIII: Lipids/Cardiovascular Disease

Lichtenstein AH. Thematic review series: patient-oriented research. Dietary fat, carbohydrate, and protein: effects on plasma lipoprotein patterns. J Lipid Res . 2006;Aug;47(8):1661-7. Epub 2006 May 31.

4.2. Lecture IX: Water Soluble Vitamins

  • Willet WC et al. What vitamins should I be taking, Doctor? NEJM. December 20,2001;345(25):1819-1824.

  • MRC Vitamin Study Research Group. Prevention of neural tube defects: results of the MRC vitamin study. Lancet 1991;338:131-137. [Full-Text Link Not Available]

  • Selhub J et al. Association between plasma homocysteine and extracranial carotid artery stenosis. New Eng J Med 1995;332:286-291.

  • Mason J et al. Folate: effects on carcinogenesis and the potential for cancer chemoprevention. Oncology 1996;10: 1727-1743.

  • Fletcher RH, Fairfield KM. Vitamins for Chronic Disease Prevention in Adults: Clinical Applications. JAMA. 2002;287(23):3127-3129.

  • Fairfield KM, Fletcher RH. Vitamins for Chronic Disease Prevention in Adults: Scientific Review. JAMA. 2002;287(23):3116-3126.

4.3. Lecture X: Diabetes

Schulze MB et al. Dietary pattern, inflammation, and incidence of type 2 diabetes in women. Am J Clin Nutr 2005;82:675-84.

4.4. Lecture XVI: Nutrition and Exercise

McDermott AY, Mernitz H. Exercise and older patients: prescribing guidelines. Am Fam Physician . 2006 Aug 1;74(3):437-44.

5. Important Website Resources