Professor Liza Makowski and MPH student Taylor Christensen discuss pipette technique in one of our nutrition laboratories
Message from the Chair
"The UNC nutrition department is a global leader in moving from discovery to delivery across our divisions: Biochemistry, Epidemiology and Intervention and Policy." Read more.
Elizabeth Mayer-Davis, PhD
Professor and Chair

The Department of Nutrition is currently recognized as a global leader in research and training, and is unique in that it is the only one in the U.S. that is situated in both a school of public health and a school of medicine.

We have created an innovative program that capitalizes on both these schools’ historical approaches to health, and thus our department has an unusual breadth of scientific and policy approaches, literally spanning from cell to society, moving from discovery to delivery. The work of department faculty and students is carried out throughout North Carolina and spans the globe to communities and populations in China, India, Malawi, Spain and The Philippines, to name a few. Our research strengths in North Carolina and across the globe include:

  • Obesity and related conditions including diabetes, heart disease and some cancers;
  • Role of nutrition and physical activity in preventing and treating disease in diverse populations;
  • Population trends in diet;
  • Influence of nutrients on the immune response to infectious disease, including gene-nutrient interactions and the development of cancer;
  • Relationships between obesity, environment, infection and diabetes; and
  • Role of agriculture and food systems in increasing food access, improving dietary intake and promoting economic development.

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Student Spotlight

Nutrition doctoral candidate, Lindsay Jaacks recently published several papers on the topic of diabetes. She plans to defend her dissertation this October. Her SEARCH Nutrition Ancillary Study Paper “No association of dietary fiber intake with inflammation or arterial stiffness in youth with type 1 diabetes” is in the Journal of Diabetes and its Complications and “Diabetes self-management education patterns in a US population-based cohort of youth with type 1 diabetes” is in Diabetes Education. Her continuing success is a pride for the department. (Photo by Max Englund, UNC Health Care.)


The Doctoral Retreat will take place on Friday, Aug. 29 from 5–7:30 p.m. at The Top of The Hill’s Great Room.

The Nutrition Department Seminar Series fall schedule has been released. All seminars will be held in 2301 McGavran-Greenberg Hall. Friday, September 12, 2–3 p.m. Friday, October 3, 2–3 p.m. Friday, November 14, 2–3 p.m. Friday, December 12, All are encouraged to attend MPH Presentations

Affiliated Research Resources

Department Calendar

Our social media does not reflect the opinions or official positions of The Gillings School of Global Public Health or The University of North Carolina. It is intended as merely a thought-provoking, educationally-based forum for The Department of Nutrition, our students and friends.