Healthy Diet for a Healthy Life (HDHL)

Together with counterparts in sixteen other countries, ZonMw is a member of “Healthy Diet for a Healthy Life” (HDHL). This promotes and funds research on the themes of diet, nutrition and health, sustainability, lifestyle and the food system. In addition, it aligns the European research agenda for the prevention of diet-related chronic and other diseases.

The vital role of diet

More than 2 billion people worldwide are overweight or obese, in many cases due to an unhealthy diet. This puts them at greater risk of developing conditions like diabetes, high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, certain types of cancer and neurodegenerative disorders. At the same time, malnutrition is also becoming more common due to the ageing global population. In both cases, it is important to explore preventive measures and to adapt national and international policies accordingly. If we do not take action, diet-related health problems will increase rapidly over the next decade.

How can we improve health at the international level?

To address these problems, HDHL is investing in research into food innovation, diet and health, food production, sustainable healthy food and related issues. In this way we are pursuing the strategic goal of better health through better diet, as well as ensuring that the healthy choice for consumers is also the most sustainable one – all based upon insights and developments in nutrition, health sciences and lifestyle. In addition, we aim to align international research agendas so as to avoid duplication. In short, HDHL forms a bridge between food and health built upon knowledge, innovation and international co-operation.


HDHL has already generated a substantial amount of new know-how, research findings and practical insights. These are increasingly being used to support policy development in various countries, both within and outside Europe. Below are some examples.

Our view of the future

HDHL’s aim is that, by 2030, everyone will have the motivation, ability and possibility to follow a healthy and varied diet, which in turn should be positively impacting physical and mental health and forcing diet-related diseases into decline.


If you have any questions, you can find our contact details below.

Jessie Doppler

Senior Program Manager International Cooperation HDHL
HDHL [at]