Former European Commission, Androulla Vassiliou

Former Vice Prime Minister, Minister for Health and Social Affairs of the Kingdom of Belgium, Laurette Onkelinx

Former MEP and current governor at the World Water Council, Sophie Auconie

EHLA Founder & Chairman, Mr. Coubard

Video message of Ms. Van Rompuy

Jean-Pierre Després, Scientific Director of the ICCR

Prof. Frank Hu, Harvard School of Public Health

Dr Franco Sassi, OECD

Trudy Wijnhoven, WHO/Europe and MEP Claudiu Ciprian Tanasescu

Justine Henin, Former world tennis player

The European Healthy Lifestyle Alliance (EHLA):

The European Healthy Lifestyle Alliance (EHLA), an initiative of the International Chair on Cardiometabolic Risk (ICCR), is an international non-profit association based in Brussels, Belgium. Such as its founding father, EHLA is scientifically based, multidisciplinary and independent. The platform is gathering “friends” from various fields in health, nutrition, physical activity, consumers, politics and science, encouraging debate on lifestyle issues at the European level. The association wishes to work with the European institutions and stakeholders as a consultative body, giving access to the scientific expertise provided by the ICCR. EHLA is providing the European decision-makers with scientific evidence on the impact of obesity and related health risks and the need for lifestyle changes. Together with all other stakeholders, EHLA wants to formulate actions and recommendations on what the EU and its citizens – and we as professionals- can do jointly to halt abdominal obesity.

With the support of an internationally known academic organisation like the ICCR, EHLA aims to fight Europe’s number 1 current public health challenge, obesity. It presents pragmatic solutions in terms of lifestyle changes, knowing that most lifestyle-linked diseases such as type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and certain types of cancer, could be avoided through prevention. Hence, EHLA’s message for the European institutions is not only to raise awareness on this issue, but above all to make the healthy options the easy options in Europe by advising the importance of nutritional quality, good hydration with water, as well as promoting physical activity. Small steps can make a big difference, so “Eat well, Drink well, Move!”

The International Chair on Cardiometabolic Risk (ICCR):

The ICCR is an independent, academic, multidisciplinary organization affiliated with Université Laval and located at the Centre de recherche de l’Institut universitaire de cardiologie et de pneumologie de Québec in Québec City. The Chair aims to be a platform to examine new ideas, pool member experience and expertise, and share scientific and clinical data to benefit healthcare professionals around the world and the general public. The overarching purpose is to fight the abdominal obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease epidemic sweeping the world. The Chair’s primary objective is help raise awareness of abdominal obesity as a new risk factor that, along with traditional risk factors, figures largely in the new concept of global cardiometabolic risk.

On September 17, 2013, the International Chair on Cardiometabolic Risk organized a one-day special conference which brought together international experts, politicians, nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) and stakeholders entitled “Eat well, drink well, move… A small step for you, a big step for Europe”. This unique event was held at the Solvay Library in Brussels. It showed that Europe could play a key leadership role in the battle against societal chronic diseases. The objective of this full day meeting was to discuss simple and pragmatic recommendations based on scientific evidence which could be translated to all European citizens. The launch of the European Healthy Lifestyle Alliance concluded this successful conference.

ICCR website: www.myhealthywaist.org