Bridging the Gap between Food Science and Human Health
Food scientists and nutritionists work to determine how the food we eat causes or prevents health issues related to obesity. School of Food Science assistant professor Giuliana Noratto is using multi-disciplinary research approaches to shift the outcome of disease.
Noratto focuses her research projects around the living organisms in the intestinal tract (gut microbiota) and how bioactive compounds (specifically prebiotics) can be beneficial to human health. Researching gut microbiota and its interaction with food bioactive compounds will help determine nutritional strategies to combat the worldwide health issue of obesity.
Outcomes from the research will provide scientific evidence about the effects of diet in the prevention and treatment of obesity and obesity related diseases. Her preliminary results strongly suggest that bioactive compounds produced during the aging process of American cheddar cheese might contribute to reestablishing a healthy microbiota balance in obese mice.
Beyond the scientific benefits, Noratto’s research will help educate consumers that dairy products and plant botanicals have positive effects on the prevention of chronic diseases and can help them make better informed decisions on what they eat.
Noratto has started her research, but is looking for further funding to expand her program. She is also accepting graduate applications from students interested in the challenge of exploring nutrigenomics. She can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.