Caffeine use among adolescents; exercise and nutrition interactions; factors that influence ingestive behavior and the development of obesity in humans.
Since 2008, I have been the director of the Nutrition and Health Research Laboratory. My students, staff and I work on research that is broadly related to ingestive behavior. We study factors that influence the motivation to eat and drink, the relationship between food additives (primarily caffeine) and behavior, and individual difference characteristics that predict weight gain in children, adolescents, and adults. We currently have funding from the National Institute on Drug Abuse to study the impact of caffeine use on behavior, physiology and mood in children and adolescents. We have also done extensive work on motivation to eat, including characterizing difference in lean and obese individuals in patterns of responding for food that predict later weight gain. In addition to our primary studies, we have done work on many other topics, including nutrition labeling, food pricing, hydration and energy intake, the influence of chewing gum on eating, and the relationship between exercise and eating. If you would like to learn more about our work, I invite you to visit our nutrition and health research laboratory website.