Spring 2012 Human Health Special Topics Courses at Emory

The Center for the Study of Human Health is offering multiple courses during the Spring 2012 semester to Emory University undergraduates interested in expanding their knowledge of health. In particular, three special topics courses are being offered, providing Emory students with unique access to information that may not typically be part of a traditional degree program.  The descriptions for these three courses are provided below.

  • HLTH 385-000: Botanical Medicine and Health – Medical traditions based on botanical drug sources can be found in all human cultures and date back to prehistory.  In this course, both ancient and modern day botanical traditions across many cultures will be discussed as they pertain to medicine. The pathways through which natural drugs are made by plants and how they affect humans will be the focus of this class. Some examples include botanical drugs for infectious disease, cancer, cardiovascular health, dental health, central nervous system function, and much more. By the end of this course, you will have a solid understanding of the major botanical drugs, including their sources, applications, and cultural relevance.
  • HLTH 385-001: Food, Health and Society – Human health is intrinsically linked to dietary practices. Plants, in particular, may be used both as medicine and food, and it can often be difficult to draw a line between the two groups: food may be used as medicine and vice versa. The lens of ethnopharmacology can be used to gain an integrated biocultural perspective on foods, encompassing not only the substantive (or physical) qualities, but also the intangible (symbolic). In this course, we will explore the ways that human groups identify, collect, create, and transform foods, how they shape those into dietary behaviors, and how this influences human health. The pharmacological properties of foods will be examined and we will use case studies of dietary complexes, such as the Mediterranean diet, in order to better understand the food-medicine continuum as a determinant of health and well-being.
  • HLTH 385-002: Contemporary Nutrition – The science of nutrition will be explored as it relates to individual food choices, health behaviors, and overall health, with topics including wellness, obesity, eating disorders, sports nutrition, and predictive health. Nutrients and nutritional needs will be addressed in a conventional and functional approach, covering core concepts such as macronutrients, vitamins and minerals, nutrition and health, and supplements. Additionally, we will discuss current controversies in nutrition with regard to health and wellness.

For more information about these and other courses offered by the Center, please visit the Emory Course Atlas.

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