10 Top Health and Well-Being Courses You Can Take for Free

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happiness courses
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As more people living longer and still suffering burnout in their professions and lives, it is no wonder that we are so obsessed for living better, not just longer. Mental health gets as much attention as physical health, and the convergence of the two terms has created a growing field known as well-being.

What good is life if you aren’t happy with it?

Your quality of life is not complete if you just concentrate on physical wellness while neglecting other primary health components. Well-being is a public health concern and encouraging outcomes from the search for holistic well-being remind us that there is more to life than just a physical body.

And it’s not just a matter of your profession. Knowing issues such as work-life balance, healthy behaviors and mental well-being gives you a better perspective on living the good life.

Once you start learning what it takes for you to be content and fulfilled, you can not go back to living the way you used to be. Your index of well-being allows you to keep track on mental health, physical well-being and overall life outlook.

Whether you are learning what impacts your personal well-being or planning to make a difference for public health, these health and well-being courses will offer you the new findings and understanding in the field in collaboration with leading institutions.

1. Mind Control: Managing Your Mental Health During COVID-19

Never in the history of humanity have so many people been feeling intense anxiety related to COVID-19 and the world it will leave in its wake. The intent of one of the most popular health and well-being courses is to give you a deeper understanding of the anxiety reaction as it relates to various aspects of our current life, ranging from our consumption of news to the way we talk to our children about this.

The course will also give you clear strategies for managing and, in fact, turning off the anxiety response at least for short periods. It is highly expected that you will leave this course with a better understanding of how your brain reacts to crises, along with some powerful tools for managing it before it manages you.

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2. The Science of Well-Being

  • Host university/institution: Yale University
  • Time to complete: 19 hours
  • Number of students: 2,867,785
  • Shareable certificate: Yes
  • Rating: 4.9 / 5
  • Official website: The Science of Well-Being

In this one of the most purchased health and well-being courses, you will engage in a series of challenges designed to increase your own happiness and build more productive habits. As preparation for these tasks, Professor Laurie Santos reveals misconceptions about happiness, annoying features of the mind that lead us to think the way we do, and the research that can help us change. You will ultimately be prepared to successfully incorporate a specific wellness activity into your life.

3. Finding Purpose and Meaning In Life: Living for What Matters Most

In this one of the most renowned health and well-being courses, you’ll learn how science, philosophy and practice all play a role in both finding your purpose and living a purposeful life. You will hear from historical figures and individuals about their journeys to finding and living a purposeful life, and will walk through different exercises to help you find out what matters most to you so you can live a purposeful life.

By the end of this course, you will:

  1. Apply personal approaches and skills to self-change and become and stay connected to your purpose every day.
  2. Be able to create a purpose for your life (don’t be intimidated, this is different from creating “the purpose” for your life).
  3. Know how self-transcending purpose positively affects well-being.
  4. Understand that having a strong purpose in life is an essential element of human well-being.

As an added benefit, you will also have complimentary access, for a period of time, to the Purposeful App. This groundbreaking mobile and desktop app is designed to help you build a purposeful rhythm into each day, so you can bring your best self to what matters most.

4. Stanford Introduction to Food and Health

  • Host university/institution: Stanford University
  • Time to complete: 5 hours
  • Number of students: 430,304
  • Shareable certificate: Yes
  • Rating: 4.7 / 5
  • Official website: Stanford Introduction to Food and Health

In this course, learners will be given the information and practical skills they need to begin optimizing the way they eat. This course will shift the focus away from reductionist discussions about nutrients and move, instead, towards practical discussions about real food and the environment in which we consume it.

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By the end of this one of the most popular health and well-being courses, learners should have the tools they need to distinguish between foods that will support their health and those that threaten it. In addition, it will present a compelling rationale for a return to simple home cooking, an integral part of the efforts to live longer, healthier lives.

5. A Life of Happiness and Fulfillment

  • Host university/institution: Indian School of Business
  • Time to complete: 31 hours
  • Number of students: 355,082
  • Shareable certificate: Yes
  • Rating: 4.8 / 5
  • Official website: A Life of Happiness and Fulfillment

This course, based on the award-winning class offered both at the Indian School of Business and at the McCombs School of Business at The University of Texas at Austin, developed by Prof. Raj Raghunathan (aka “Dr. Happy-smarts”) draws content from a variety of fields, including psychology, neuroscience, and behavioral decision theory to offer a tested and practical recipe for leading a life of happiness and fulfillment.

By the end of the course, students who have been diligent with the lectures and exercises are expected to not just gain a deeper understanding of the science of happiness, but to also be significantly happier.

6. Positive Psychiatry and Mental Health

  • Host university/institution: The University of Sydney
  • Time to complete: 23 hours
  • Number of students: 107,483
  • Shareable certificate: Yes
  • Rating: 4.8 / 5
  • Official website: Positive Psychiatry and Mental Health

In this course, you will explore different aspects of good mental health as well as an overview of the major kinds of mental disorders, their causes, treatments and how to seek help and support. The course will feature a large number of Australian experts in psychiatry, psychology and mental health research, and you will also hear from “lived experience experts”, people who have lived with mental illness, and share their personal stories of recovery.

Sonia Kumar, the instructor of the course takes an evidence-based approach to a range of strategies that anyone can use to enhance their own mental health and that of others, from exercise and relaxation techniques through to the role of love, relationships and ‘good’ types of work. It covers topics from creativity and yoga through to psychiatric medications and psychotherapies.

7. Hacking Exercise For Health

  • Host university/institution: McMaster University
  • Time to complete: 23 hours
  • Number of students: 30,386
  • Shareable certificate: Yes
  • Rating: 4.7 / 5
  • Official website: Hacking Exercise For Health

Renowned exercise physiologists Martin Gibala and Stuart Phillips of McMaster University teach the surprising new science of cardio fitness and strength-building—and then provide you with hacks to get fit and strong (and healthy!) in less time than you ever thought possible.

In Hacking Exercise for Health, you’ll follow Marty and Stu as they teach you the basics about the way your body boosts its fitness and strength. Next, they’ll apply that theory, providing you with a series of do-anywhere workouts and, most importantly, teaching you what you need to know to design your own sessions.

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Filled with inspirational practical tips, fun quizzes, interactive community participation and assignments designed to help you remember your lessons, Hacking Exercise for Health will give you the tools and techniques to incorporate exercise into your life, no matter how busy you are.

8. Introduction to Self-Determination Theory: An approach to motivation, development and wellness

In this course, Professor Richard Ryan, co-founder of the theory, will provide an overview of SDT with special emphasis on how autonomy, competence, and relatedness supports and facilitates behavioral persistence, quality of relationships, and healthy developmental processes, among other topics. He will also discuss the convergence of behavioral phenomenological and neuropsychological aspects of autonomy within SDT research.

In addition, he will illustrate practical applications of SDT, with emphasis on educational, work, sport, healthcare and psychotherapy settings.

9. Biohacking Your Brain’s Health

  • Host university/institution: Emory University
  • Time to complete: 12 hours
  • Number of students: 46,839
  • Shareable certificate: Yes
  • Rating: 4.7 / 5
  • Official website: Biohacking Your Brain’s Health

With deteriorating health, particularly brain health, occurring at a global level, this course introduces you to methods for maximizing your brain’s fitness through nutrition, exercise, meditation, and sleep.

Therefore, this one of the most chosen health and well-being courses by students will debunk popular myths about prescribed practices for overall health and then uncover studies from the last few decades revealing practical routines and interventions that are proven to help improve the brain. Here, you’ll also get a glimpse at the brain’s structure and common brain functions, as well as a “prescription” each week of tips for improving your brain’s health.

10. Managing Your Health: The Role of Physical Therapy and Exercise

This one of the favorite health and health and well-being courses among learners will introduce them to the concepts and benefits of physical therapy and exercise. Over six weeks learners will explore:

  1. Why physical activity and exercise are important,
  2. Exercise and Cardiovascular Disease,
  3. Exercise and Osteoporosis,
  4. Exercise and Cancer,
  5. Common Sports Injuries,
  6. Exercise and Arthritis

Final thoughts

Your well-being index measures the total quality of life, health, endurance and quality of life. Focusing on your physical well-being alone is not enough, since there are so many other variables going into the index.

Being sure to meet your mental health needs, your social well-being and your overall physical fitness plan will give you a greater picture of your fulfillment. Creating resilience requires a variety of factors that will help you live your best life.

The previously mentioned health and well-being courses can introduce you to the latest science behind what makes life better, so you can make better choices about your healthcare.

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