The US presidential candidate studied law at Yale and in 1972 presented her thesis on the rights of children. She has also studied children's health, with a focus on brain development.
"Hillary Clinton's involvement in issues around medical research and health problems are well known," said Professor Olle Larkö, dean at the Sahlgrenska Academy.
"She is also a strong advocate for increased investment in medical research."
In 2000, Clinton was elected New York senator. She has now set her sights on becoming the first female US president and is battling to represent the Democrat party in 2008.
Hillary Clinton's work in "raising awareness of the increased health problems linked to obesity, poor quality food and physical inactivity" was also a key factor in the academy's decision to honour her.
The doctorate will be awarded at a ceremony in America in the autumn.