Sarai Zwinnen
Sarai Zwinnen

Maker: Kennisland



Advisor care innovation

Sarai Zwinnen

LinkedIn profile

Sarai works as an advisor care innovation and advocates a broader view on health, with the emphasis not on illness and its solution, but on the quality of life++Quality of lifeAs is done, for example, in the Positive Health movement, where the starting point is a meaningful life and the ability to deal with physical, social and emotional challenges. and all aspects that contribute to this. Especially in nursing care she sees the benefits of this approach. This is how she became involved in the Living a Whole Life project++Living a Whole LifeAn initiative of Kennisland and Vandejong in which we are looking for new ideas and future scenarios for when we are old and in need of care. We are working with twelve pioneers to further develop their innovative ideas. of Kennisland. Initially as an intern, she spoke with elderly people to gain insight into the social, emotional, physical and environmental factors that influence their well-being. She also gains insights directly from the field by providing informal care for several elderly people in Amsterdam through Mantelaar.++MantelaarMantelaar links (former) healthcare students to elderly people for care and companionship. 

During her studies Sarai approached health and healthcare from different angles. She studied what happens in the brain in diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s, as well as the healthcare context: how do we, as a society, deal with these kinds of diseases and other important health issues? What is the influence of the government, research and the pharmaceutical industry? 

Sarai has always had an enormous fascination for the human brain. She was able to express this in her study Psychobiology++PsychobiologyPsychobiologists study the workings of the brain at all levels: from molecule to the human mind. It covers the nervous system, how neurons work and what the relationship is between the brain and human behaviour. at the UvA. She learned the biological processes behind common disorders such as addiction and depression. After taking electives at the Københavns Universitet on the important influence of lifestyle and the outside world on the brain, she decided to broaden her knowledge about how we as society deal with illness and health and how our healthcare system works. That’s why she got a master’s degree in Management, Entrepreneurship & Policy Analysis in Health & Life Sciences at the Vrije Universiteit. There, she approached today’s complex problems in healthcare by seeking solutions in interdisciplinary teamsSarai advocates a broader view on health, with the emphasis not on illness and its solution, but on the quality of life and all aspects that contribute to this. and by studying the development and implementation of major technological as well as social innovations.

Themes such as prevention++PreventionIn the Netherlands, only about 2% of the total healthcare expenditure goes to prevention., lifestyle and nutrition have always appealed to her. She sees that the emphasis in healthcare is on solving problems, while according to Sarai more attention should be paid to preventing problems. That is also why, during an internship at Diagnosis Nutrition & Health++Diagnosis Nutrition & HealthA national program with the belief that nutrition deserves a prominent role in the promotion of health and prevention of chronic diseases. They initiate, support and accelerate innovations and initiatives with a major social impact., she researched which factors influence the eating pattern of teenagers and how, by tackling these factors, obesity in teenagers can be prevented. 

Originally from Deventer, she has found her place in Amsterdam. In her spare time she likes to explore different kitchens, by both cooking and eating, play soccer, pet cats and feed her guilty pleasure: watching bad reality shows.

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This text has a Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY) and has been copied from the Kennisland website. For a full version with images, streamers and notes go to