During my career, I have worked in several areas of nutrition, including nutritional support in burn patients and the effects of diet composition on body weight and chronic diseases, with a particular depth in human energy metabolism. My research interests and skills, however, cover a much broader range of topics. Collaborations have interested me in the role of functional foods and nutraceutical compounds on health, determinants of weight gain and the development of metabolic syndrome in children. Over the past two years, I have also become interested in school nutrition programs.
Some of my specific research interests include variability in the adaptation to changes in diet composition and energy balance; the role of sleep and circadian rhythms on the development of obesity and metabolic disorder and more specifically in the effects of disturbance of circadian rhythms on food intake, food preferences, nutrient metabolism, physical activity and their interactions; and the effects of nutraceuticals with anti-inflammatory properties on the metabolic syndrome and weight regulation.
■ Impact of Salad Bars on Dietary Consumption Patterns in Elementary School Students: This project studies the effects of the implementation of salad bars on food choices and plate waste in elementary school children in Fairfax County Public Schools.
■ The Effects of Capsaicin on Postprandial Energy Metabolism and Glucose Control: Postprandial energy metabolism and glucose control are assessed after the consumption of a breakfast with or without the supplementation of four teaspoons of cayenne pepper.
■ L. de Jonge et al., Poor sleep quality and sleep apnea are associated with higher resting energy expenditure in obese individuals with short sleep duration. JJ Clin Endocrinol Metab 97, 2881-2889 (2012).
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