Substance use Addiction & Food (SAF)

Addictive behaviours, including substance use (a.o. nicotine, alcohol, and cannabis use), over-eating, and compulsive Internet use are highly prevalent among youth and associated with significant (mental) health risks. Our mission is to unravel the development of these addictive behaviours among children, adolescents, and young adults in order to prevent adverse health outcomes later in life. Through applying a multidisciplinary perspective and using primarily longitudinal designs, we strive to understand the onset and developmental trajectories of substance use and addictive behaviours.


Our research focuses specifically on genetic and environmental effects (and their interaction), as well as underlying neurobiological mechanisms. The knowledge we derive from our studies, along with internationally published findings, is used to develop prevention and intervention programs that we rigorously test in randomized controlled trials. Overall, we aim to develop theoretical frameworks based on studies using state-of-the-art methodologies with the ultimate goal to stimulate positive behavioral change.

Research projects


G(F)OOD together (corona-)project

Survey waves were administered among adolescents and their parents both before and after the COVID-19 pandemic, in order to gain insight into how friends and parents influence adolescents' mental health and lifestyle.

Logo Project Green Gen Z

Green Gen Z

Climate change is a global crisis. Many adolescents and young adults are concerned about their future. How is the climate crisis affecting youth? And (how) are they trying to live sustainably?

Logo healthy student life

The Impact of Internet and Social Media Use on University Students’ Mental Health.

A PhD project on the associations between internet/social media use and university students’ mental health, using the longitudinal Healthy Student Life dataset and additional data regarding social media use.

Radboud Team Science Award


We aim to facilitate easy access to our research findings on substance use, addiction, and food. Click on the button below to view our research publications and gain immediate access to the valuable insights we have gathered.

Our publications

RAD blog

On the RAD blog we write monthly articles about our research on substance use and addiction, with a particular focus on smoking, drug and alcohol use, and diet. Do you want to stay up to date on the latest insights in the field?

Follow our blog!

SAF Meetings

We have monthly SAF-meetings in which we discuss theoretical and practical issues related to our projects and recent developments in the field of substance use, addictive behaviours, and food research in an informal way. Would you like to join us? Please contact Jacqueline Vink.

Contact information


Maria Montessori building

Thomas Van Aquinostraat 4
6525GD Nijmegen
Postal address
Postbus 9104