UM Interfaculty Programme for Nutrition and Health ‘Eatwell

With its background and expertise in medical, biological, behavioral, socio-economic sciences, law and more recently science and engineering, Maastricht University in close collaboration with Maastricht University Medical Centre and Brightlands, is in a unique position to expand a modern Program on Sustainable Nutrition and Health and to deliver better understanding and new approaches to a growing population challenged by diet related diseases.

The objective of the Maastricht Interfaculty Programme for Nutrition and Health ‘Eatwell’ is to promote health and decrease chronic diseases through healthy nutrition by

  1. groundbreaking interdisciplinary research
  2. active communication and promotion to society
  3. international partnerships on science and policy
  4. creation of new commercial activities in the area of healthy lifestyle and personalised nutrition

Solving obesitas asks for a joined effort

Start: Bottom-up approach

In 2010 Maastricht UMC+ embraced the Eatwell initiative by providing a grant of €375,000 for bottom-up initiatives led by young scientists from the different Maastricht University faculties. 

The following five projects were awarded after a competitive call and a jury of representatives from the different faculties:

  • FPN / FHML: Dance for your health
  • FPN / SBE: Changing the default: how to nudge consumers in an obesogenic environment to eat well
  • FPN / FHML: Picky eating: risk or protective factor of picky eating?
  • FHML / FPN / SBE: Health Bread4kids
  • FHML / MUMC+/ FPN: effects of different weight loss methods on gut-brain interaction

Seeding grants were provided to 3 initiatives:

  • FHML / FPN: Research and development for a personalised dietary prevention service
  • FHML / FPN /MUMC+: iYard of COACH: an internet landscape of functionalities to support healthy living in overweight children
  • FHML /Flaw: The role of European law & policy in fighting overweight and obesity

Next: Eatwell Combats Globesity

In 2013 the Executive Board and the deans of Maastricht University decided to give a financial boost of €1,000,000 for the programme Eatwell Combats Globesity. The 5 work-packages within the programme were lead by professors Annemie Schols, Anita Jansen, Stef Kremers, Maurice Zeegers and Aalt Bast.

This grant stems from an agreement in the 2012-2016 Strategic Programme to make extra money available for interfaculty and interdisciplinary research in the coming years. The decision was made with the advice of a group of international experts.

Eatwell PhD Theses resulting from this grant and additional external funding:
Alie de Boer  The Interaction of food and medicine in effect and law (2015)
Kelly Stewart Preventive genetic testing: our best foot forward (2018)
Fania Dassen Training cognitive control: the role of executive functioning in eating behavior and weight loss (2018)
Sarah Mount Conceptualisations of successful ageing and leads for lifestyle            
modification (2019)
Sieske Franssen Neural responses to food stimuli (2020)
Martijn van Beers Novel approaches of cognitive function in COPD (2021)
Mirjam Urlings Sound Science: Selective citation in science-based decision-making (2019)