Evidence, Diet and Health

Course content

The focus of the course is how to assess available evidence for a causal relationship between diet and diseases with a main focus on diet, macronutrients and life-style diseases such as cancer, type 2 diabetes, and cardiovascular disease. The course will provide the students with theoretical teaching in the methodology, several examples and exercises and assignments that gives them opportunity to practise.


MSc Programme in Clinical Nutrition
MSc Programme in Human Nutrition

Learning outcome

The main objective of the course is to provide the students with an understanding of basic methods and concepts in nutritional epidemiology, to enable them to assess available evidence for a causal relationship between diet and health.

After completion of the course the students should be able to:


  • Define epidemiology and causality
  • Describe the epidemiological measures of frequency and association
  • Define and explain the concepts bias, confounding, effect modification, chance, power, validity and generalizability
  • List the study designs, and describe their advantages and limitations in nutritional research


  • Demonstrate ability to critically assess the validity of studies on the relation between diet and health
  • Discuss the evidence for causal relationship between diet and health
  • Evaluate strategies for statistical analysis in different types of epidemiological studies


  • Perform evidence evaluations of relationships between dietary components and health
  • Identify gaps in current knowledge and contribute to the planning of studies that will make progress
  • Make dietary recommendations based on an evaluation of the evidence

Theoretical lectures and exercise practice. The objective of course assignments is to use of the principles in evaluation of scientific evidence.

Course literature will be announced at study start on the course’s Absalon page.

Academic qualifications equivalent to a BSc degree are recommended.
Knowledge and skills in nutrition, physiology, biochemistry, and statistics are recommended.

Continuous feedback during the course of the semester

We provide a thorough feed-back on all the written assignments mostly in plenum, but also for at least one of the assignments some individual feedback in writing on language as well as content.

7,5 ECTS
Type of assessment
Written assignment, 48 hours
Type of assessment details
Description of examination: The student will be given two papers and a number of questions that they have to consider in their answer. They will have 48 hours to do the task in which they are allowed to use all papers from the course, their notes, the internet and also to meet and discuss, but each student must make an individual answer and they are not allowed to discuss their written answers or copy writing from other students. The evaluation will consider skills mainly from the strength of the arguments and an overall evaluation of the answer. The final answer must be uploaded within 48 hours.
All aids allowed
Marking scale
7-point grading scale
Censorship form
No external censorship
Internal grading. More assessors.
Criteria for exam assessment

Please see "Learning Outcome"

Single subject courses (day)

  • Category
  • Hours
  • Lectures
  • 16
  • Preparation
  • 70
  • Exercises
  • 52
  • Exam Preparation
  • 20
  • Exam
  • 48
  • English
  • 206


Course number
7,5 ECTS
Programme level
Full Degree Master

1 block

Block 1
No restrictions.
The number of seats may be reduced in the late registration period
Study Board of Food, Human Nutrition and Sports
Contracting department
  • Department of Nutrition, Exercise and Sports
Contracting faculty
  • Faculty of Science
Course Coordinators
  • Lotte Lauritzen   (2-727246746b7e7934717b346a71)
  • Nina Rica Wium Geiker   (6-716f73756f7c4a786f827d38757f386e75)
Saved on the 28-02-2023

Are you BA- or KA-student?

Are you bachelor- or kandidat-student, then find the course in the course catalog for students:

Courseinformation of students