General information . Research profile . Working Groups . Research examples

Research examples

Illustrative examples of research within our program

Lifestyle Innovations based on youth’s Knowledge and Experience (LIKE)

The aim of LIKE is to develop an innovative and accessible approach to promote sustainable healthy habits early in life in multi-ethnic lower SE-groups. We develop, implement and evaluate innovative interventions at the level of family, school, neighbourhood and city, as an integrated programme, based upon a detailed insight into the population at stake. Children and key stakeholders will, as co-creators, actively participate in the development, implementation and dissemination of the approach. We target children with and without overweight/obesity, aged 10-14 years old. We focus on the following behaviours:  physical activity and sedentary behaviour, eating and sleeping habits. The LIKE approach will be developed, implemented and evaluated within Amsterdam East, embedded within the larger Programme on Healthy Weight for Children. The LIKE consortium consists of researchers from the HBCD programme (AMC, VUmc, VU), who cooperate with researchers from other universities, i.c. Erasmus Medical Center and Maastricht University.


PROMISS (PRevention Of Malnutrition In Senior Subjects) is a multi-country project aiming to tackle protein-energy malnutrition in community-dwelling older persons. The PROMISS consortium contains worldwide expertise in epidemiology, clinical trials, geriatrics, nutrition, physical activity, microbiomics, behaviour, consumer, sensory  and computer sciences. Existing data from international prospective aging cohorts and national nutritional surveys will be combined with new data from short- and long-term intervention studies in older persons at risk. Its holistic approach will provide insight in the causality of the links between diet, physical activity, appetite and protein-energy malnutrition and underlying pathways, thereby providing the necessary evidence to develop optimal, sustainable and evidence-based dietary and physical activity strategies to prevent protein-energy malnutrition and enhance active and healthy aging. PROMISS will deliver food concepts and products in collaboration with industry and persuasive technology to support adherence to these strategies. Together with stakeholders, PROMISS results will be translated into practical recommendations to guide policy and health professionals at EU level.


The MyDailyMoves project aims to develop a measurement tool to assess physical activity and sedentary behaviour in 9-12-year-old children. The development of this tool will be based on 1) a systematic literature review on the measurement properties of existing self-reported measurement tools; 2) the child-perspective of physical activity and sedentary behaviour, using concept mapping and photo voice. The MyDailyMoves tool will be evaluated on content validity, construct validity and test-retest validity among 9-12-year old children in Amsterdam. This project is a collaboration between HBCD-researchers from the VUmc and the municipality of Amsterdam.

SUCCESS STUDY: Smoking Reduction by a Smoking Cessation Strategy in the National Cervical Cancer Screening Program

The aim of SUCCESS is to assess the effectiveness of a smoking cessation strategy initiated after cervical cancer screening. Discussing smoking and offering cessation support after cervical cancer screening enables general practices to identify younger and relatively healthy smokers and offer them cessation support.  Prior to the intervention study, qualitative studies have been performed. Firstly, an interview study among female smokers to explore the perspectives and attitudes towards an unsolicited discussion about smoking or smoking cessation after the cervical cancer screening and secondly a focus group study among health professionals (nurses, assistants and GPs) to explore the acceptability in the general practice. The intervention will be  a cluster randomized trial in general practices. The study is a cooperation between LUMC and AMC.

Physical Activity Levels in patients with Mamma-carcinoma (PALM) & MEchanisms of TRaining in patients with Cancer (METRIC)

The PALM and METRIC studies aim to move from a one-size fits all approach to personalized and tailored guidelines for physical activity, by gaining a better understanding of: 1) the assessment of accelerometer-based physical activity and sedentary behaviour of cancer survivors; 2) modifiable and unmodifiable correlates of physical activity and sedentary behavior to acquire knowledge of who is particularly at risk for a physically inactive and sedentary lifestyle, and knowledge of potential intervention components to improve behavior; 3) which exercise intervention (e.g. frequency, intensity, type, time (FITT)) is most beneficial to improve health-related quality of life (HRQoL), for whom, and under what circumstances (e.g. identify demographic, clinical, personal moderators of intervention effects) and 4) the working mechanisms of interventions on HRQoL outcomes in cancer survivors to enable the development of more effective and efficacious exercise interventions. Therefore, this project aims to study determinants and mechanisms of physical activity. METRIC is conducted by researchers from the VUmc.


The MooDFOOD (multi-country cOllaborative project on the rOle of Diet, FOod-related behaviour, and Obesity in the prevention of Depression) consortium aims 1) to gain a better understanding of the psychological, lifestyle and environmental pathways underlying the multi-faceted, bidirectional links of food intake, nutrient status, food-related behaviour and obesity with depression and 2) to develop and disseminate innovative evidence-based, feasible, effective and sustainable nutritional strategies for the prevention of clinical depression. In close collaboration with stakeholders and experts MooDFOOD will transform these nutritional strategies into guidelines and practical tools to guide policy at EU- and Member State levels. Promotion through extensive European networks will lower the risk of depression and contribute to the overall health of all EU citizens. The MooDFOOD project consists of researchers from the HBCD programme (VU, VUmc, AMC), who collaborate with international researchers in a multidisciplinary consortium involving 14 organizations in 8 European countries, using a unique integrative approach which combines expertise in nutrition, consumer behaviour, psychiatry and preventive psychology.

Growing up smoke-free in Haarlem Oost

Growing up smoke-free is especially problematic for children in deprived city districts. One such a district is Haarlem Oost where half of the youngsters live in a house in which other people smoke. The project Growing up smoke-free in Haarlem Oost aims to improve that situation. For that, a combination of three health promotion strategies is being developed, implemented and evaluated. The first is to provide nearby smoking cessation support that is specifically tailored to low-income pregnant women, their partners and parents with young children. The second is to create an as much as possible smoke-free environment. This includes both smoke-free homes and smoke-free schools, sports clubs, play grounds, terraces, and so on. The third strategy is a local media campaign which is being developed and will be implemented in collaboration with the target group. The evaluation includes a the process of the smoke-free district approach as well as its effects on growing up smoke-free, smoking cessation and quality of life. The AMC research team collaborates with the regional public health service (GGD Kennemerland) and the welfare and social work provider DOCK, and a variety of other local partners, such as midwives, health professionals and municipal policy makers.