Ylva Trolle Lagerros

Affiliated to research

Research description

Combining population-based epidemiological research with clinical intervention studies for improved understanding in the area of obesity and lifestyle related diseases

The main purpose of my research is to disentangle how health and future disease is associated with lifestyle. There are lots of opinions and advice about obesity, physical activity, sleep, and diet, but some are not based on facts. My aim is that the research that my doctoral students and I conduct, render in knowledge which can be transferred into practical use.

Obesity – from mitochondria to large epidemiological studies

Globally obesity is a more important public health issue than hunger. I have conducted epidemiological studies in the field of obesity, clinical trials and intervention studies to study the effect of weight loss, but also more preclinical work about mitochondrial capacity before and after weight loss.

Thousands of Swedes undergo bariatric surgery every year. Several of my studies are about bariatric surgery. However, surgery is not always the best solution, many patients don’t want to go through surgery, and many patients should not go through surgery either. Research about other ways to lose weight are important, and done in my research group.

Physical activity and sleep – important parts of lifestyle

I have conducted a number of studies on the role of physical (in)activity and its association with different types of cancer and other diseases. But to be able to study physical activity in large populations, valid and reliable methods to measure physical activity are key, and thus, I have conducted a number of studies to develop and test different methods to assess physical activity. Sleep is also an important lifestyle issue. We are currently conducting several studies on the association between sleep and future disease.

Diabetes and osteoporosis – common diseases affecting many

Common diseases such as diabetes and osteoporosis are influenced by our lifestyle. To understand the interplay between lifestyle and medications is of high relevance for the success of future treatment methods. In my pharmacoepidemiological studies I am able to combine my experience of lifestyle related research with my daily clinical work, meeting patients with diabetes and obesity.

Apps and webb – newcomers in healthcare, in need of evaluation

Modern technology such as webb, sms and apps are for many natural parts of everyday life. However, health care is lagging behind. During the last couple of years I have been working with new technology in a number of studies. For example, webb-based lifestyle intervention among train drivers and Weight Club on internet for weight loss. We are currently evaluating a digital health care plan and app-support to improve lifestyle in patients with diabetes through a randomized controlled trial with five primary health care centres in the Stockholm area. This type of technology is a necessity in the modern society and is a powerful tool in research, but it is still a newcomer in daily health care. With well conducted studies I envision that it can be adjusted and improved to reach the health needs of society.


1998 Medical Degree, Uppsala University

1999 Master of Public Health, Harvard School of Public Health

2006 PhD, Karolinska Institutet

2011 Associate Professor, Karolinska Institutet