HLT4320 Global Perspectives on Health, Illness, and Food

Course Overview

Educational Level: Upper undergraduate, Bachelor
Credit Hours: 3 Credits
Instructor: Dr. Lorna Shepherd Hylledig

Course Description:

Introduces cultural perspectives on food, and its relationship to health and illness. Using visual presentations, group discussions, and readings, students gain basic knowledge of assessing food customs and nutrition. Students will participate in a cross-cultural meal / food custom, and present findings related to health and ministry implications.

How This Course Benefits Students:

Everyone eats! Food can become an important bridge to, or hindrance for, sharing the Gospel. By investigating specific food-related beliefs and customs, students learn terms, and gain insight into health, illness, and nutrition expressions. Readings provide references and current research findings. Students engage in a food custom with the aim of increasing their awareness of and appreciation for diversity in food-related choices and practices.

Why This Course Is Important:

Food is essential, as well as symbolic. Jesus actively engaged in Passover, and encouraged his followers to keep Communion. Respect for customs and practices involving food can serve as a bridge for, or a barrier to, sharing the Gospel. By understanding the social and cultural reasons for food choices, Christians can connect with people at a foundational level. This course is designed to assist the lay person interested in creating and/or assisting with food and/or health related ministry in a cross-cultural setting.