The CALM project

Counteracting Age-Related Loss of Skeletal Muscle Mass (CALM) is an interdisciplinary research project being conducted at the University of Copenhagen. It brings together physiologists, sensory scientists, microbiologists, historians, and ethnologists through a clinical trial, a cultural analysis, and an innovation project. This research aims to develop new and better recommendations for physical activity and protein intake amongst the elderly.

The role of CoRe researchers in this is to provide cultural and historical perspectives on physical activity and protein intake, as well as to consider users’ practices in the development of innovative solutions.

Read more about the project at

CALM – ethnology
The ethnologists working with CALM focus on how the research subjects incorporate the clinical trial into their everyday practices, as well as on how general developments in the food sciences change practices related to food and eating.

Insights from these studies will be essential to the innovation project: by better understanding how habits change during the clinical trial, and how this extends to everyday practices, the project’s outcomes can be used to influence new types of food and eating practices.

CALM - History

Food for the Elderly in 20
th and 21st century Denmark

Postdoc project by Tenna Jensen

Tenna focuses on scientific and political perceptions of food for elderly along with past and present municipal as well as personal food practices. It is structured in three interrelated studies of:

  1. Scientific perceptions of the nutritional needs of the ageing body.
  2. Municipal health promoting initiatives and practices aimed at elderly in the 20th and 21st century. Case Copenhagen.
  3. Food practices and perceptions of the elderly.

Individual research projects

Local practices of active ageing

Project by Aske Juul Lassen

Aske Juul Lassen explores how public engagement, ethnological methods and interdisciplinary findings can be used and transformed into concrete initiatives and innovative solutions that can help counteract age-related loss of muscle mass.

In this regard, a key focus is on the cultural analysis of the practical and social problems related to older people’s protein intake and physical activity.

Everyday life as an arena for innovation. Everyday life and lifestyle changes among elderly participants in a randomized control trial

PhD project by Marie Haulund Otto

Marie’s research is part of the interdisciplinary project CALM, and her project focuses on a clinical randomised control trial (RCT). Marie examines the everyday lives of the elderly subjects involved in the RCT, and she explores how everyday life is configured within the CALM project as a whole. 

In addition to an interest in everyday life as a theoretical concept, analytical object, and a means of intervention, Marie focuses on issues related to ageing and the ageing body, time, life course processes, and health promotion.

Edible muscle: the production and innovation of protein foods and eaters

PhD project by Signe Dahl Skjoldborg

Signe’s project looks into production and innovation practices related to foods that have specific nutrient profiles. More specifically, her research focuses on dietary proteins, and how the ability of protein to maintain physical functionality is translated into familiar as well as novel products.

In this regard, a key interest is how these products simultaneously enact and disturb current as well as future notions of what healthy food is and should be.

Student projects

Spis godt! En undersøgelse af overtalelsesstrategier i ernæringsoplysningen målrettet ældre i Danmark 1955-1992

Master's thesis by Anette Berg Walbech Tordrup. Submitted to the Saxo Institute, 2014.