At a young age, I was faced with severe osteoarthritis, heart attack and cancer of the tongue. I am coping well with it, but am utterly amazed why I am confronted with these issues, despite my lifestyle, that is considered healthy to conventional rules. So my question is: what the heck is going on? The question has led me to join Dutch Cancer Patient Advocacy group Inspire2live and into a fascinating journey in the health care sector. My main focus is to establish transformational networks among stakeholders that together can do things they can never do alone. Trained as an agroecologist (MSc) and rural sociologist (PhD), and being an expert in Citizen Science, I make ample use of my professional experience in the field of sustainable agriculture, food and societal development.
I recognize that like myself, dozens of my collegue-cancer patients engage in self-experimentation with food and lifestyle in order to support their healing process. I believe this home experimentation constitutes an enormous untapped reservoir of insights that may lead to practical and cheap solutions and more encompassing health paradigms. Unleashing this potential presumes that citizens are in control of their data, and that a proper data infrastructure is in place to make exchange of data for research possible. In order to make this happen, I co-founded Foundation My Data Our Health and the Holland Health Data Co-operative. Currently, I co-lead a large consortium on Citizen Science in Health.