I am the Program Director of the Master of Clinical Nutrition Coordinated Program and Associate Professor in the Department of Clinical Nutrition, School of Health Professions at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center.
I have a professional and personal interest in the role of medical nutrition therapy for the prevention, management, and treatment of chronic diseases and specifically autoimmune inflammatory conditions. My interests stem largely from personal experience, growing up with a mother with Lupus and my own experience of living with rheumatoid arthritis for the past 25 years. I try to follow the professional literature in this area in order to communicate science-based nutrition information and help others weed out the misinformation that can lead to overly restrictive diets and nutritional deficiencies.
My teaching experiences include classroom, hybrid, and online and include wide ranging topic areas such as sports nutrition, dietary, anthropometric, and energy assessment, nutrition care process, obesity etiology and management, health promotion, and more.
My research interests and experiences are wide ranging due to my role as the consulting RDN for the clinical research unit. I am currently involved in projects related to evaluating the relationship of phosphorous intake to hypertension, managing obesity in individuals with spinal cord injury, and chronic kidney stone formers.
Nutrition and physical activity have been a long-standing passion. This passion comes from being a competitive athlete and living in a household in which nutritious, wholesome food was a priority for optimal health and performance. I believe the combination of nutrition and activity is essential for living well with all forms of arthritis along with quality medical care. It is not one or the other; it is the whole lifestyle package.
In addition to my professional career, I am a certified group fitness instructor by the American Council on Exercise and a Level III YogaFit instructor. I enjoy strength training, road cycling, roller blading, and teaching yoga. I make it a priority to find time for a workout most days of the week as well as time for relaxation by way of a good massage or the sauna.