What we eat affects our health, whether directly or by influencing our gut bacteria. I believe that a healthy diet can help us add years to our life, but maybe more importantly, also life to our years! We know there is no easy recipe that works for everyone and the effects in healthy people may be small, but can have large consequences in the long run.
For me, one of the challenges in nutrition research is to demonstrate that a particular change in diet can help people stay healthy for longer. Applying controlled stress, in various ways, to participants in a diet intervention study is a new and very relevant approach. At the same time, we want our methods to be as minimally invasive as possible.
After my training as a nutrition scientist and in nutrition epidemiology at Wageningen University, my activities have focused on scientific substantiation of health benefits of foods and food ingredients. If there is a health benefit, it is also important to be allowed to communicate this to consumers. Therefore, I also focus on the requirements for the use of health claims: combining my experience in designing nutrition trials with knowledge of regulatory issues can help our customers select the most effective approach in building a dossier.