SWITCH - Healthy and sustainable dietary behaviour among secondary school students

The current global food system poses a risk to individual wellbeing and leads to various environmental pressures. Given the highly interrelated nature and causes of health and sustainability issues regarding food, a holistic approach to healthy and sustainable eating is required. Adolescents are considered to be an important target group to stimulate healthy and sustainable dietary behaviours, since adolescents start making autonomous dietary choices and dietary behaviours learned early in life track into adulthood.

Within the SWITCH project, we aim to understand how adolescents can be empowered and supported within or by means of the secondary school context to engage in healthy and sustainable dietary behaviour. We therefore aim to understand motivators and barriers for students to engage in healthy and sustainable dietary behaviours, and we aim to gain more insight into current school-based initiatives in the Netherlands. Finally, we aim to empower students by participating in designing or strengthening an intervention regarding healthy and sustainable dietary behaviour corresponding to their own views and needs.

This interdisciplinary project, running from September 2020 to December 2024, requires expertise from the disciplines of education, eating behaviour, health, sustainability and behaviour change. To obtain an interdisciplinary perspective, researchers from the chair groups of Education & Learning Sciences and Consumption & Healthy Lifestyles collaborate in this project.