Policy

LongITools is a new European research project studying the interactions between the environment, lifestyle and health in determining the risks of chronic cardiovascular and metabolic disease. The project will effectively translate the research findings into decision making and evaluation tools for policymakers at all levels.

woman on phone walking

Phillipe Roux, Head of Unit, European Commission, Country Knowledge and Scientific Committees, DG Health and Consumer

“Research plays a crucial role for policymaking…With more and better knowledge we can develop better policies that minimise the negative effect of environmental exposures and the adverse health effect on EU citizens.”


LONGITOOLS context

Cardiovascular and metabolic disease, such as heart diseases, type 2 diabetes and obesity, have become global public health crises. So, how does 21st century society and the environment contribute to this? LongITools aims to find out.

The circumstances in which we live, from the air we breathe, to our lifestyle choices, the built environment that surrounds us and the psychosocial challenges everyday life brings, have fundamental impacts on our health. Put simply, together they have one of, if not the biggest influence upon our health. But despite all this, how those issues, alongside our genetic factors, contribute to heart diseases, obesity and much more throughout our life is relatively unknown.

Why should we understand this link?

Cardiovascular diseases are the leading cause of deaths in the EU, and type 2 diabetes and obesity have reached epidemic proportions worldwide. Together, they form significant economic and service strains on healthcare.

A shift is therefore needed. We should no longer look at health as a consequence of individual events but as a complex journey. Our research will help highlight the most effective points during people’s lives to create interventions, to truly take a health in all policies approach to one of public health’s biggest challenges.

What does LongITools aim to achieve?

Through different work packages, LongITools will demonstrate country-specific life-course models for anthropometric, glycaemic, cardiovascular and lipidemic health.  These models will help identify clinical interventions that can help reduce the health burden. Particular work packages will test factors such as policy making and treatment effect through use of randomised controlled trials. Throughout the project, policymakers and project researchers will be constantly engaged to maximise the health policy impact the project can have.


The current environmental, health and economic Situation

Environment infographic
Health infographic
Economic infographic

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