Valerie Duffy


University of Connecticut, USA

Valerie B. Duffy (PhD, RD) offers a wealth of experience in food, nutrition, health promotion and public health nutrition. The Duffy Lab at the University of Connecticut has two main research interests. First, we attempt to understand variation in chemosensory perception in humans and how this variation influences food flavor, food preference and food intake. More recently, we study how chemosensory variation influences responses to flavored cigarettes and e-cigarettes as well as bariatric surgery. Our ultimate goal is to understand how chemosensory variation influences our ability to follow a healthy diet and behaviors for the prevention of chronic disease and obesity. Second, we collaborate with community agencies across the state to promote healthy diets and healthy weights of children and their, particularly those of economic disadvantage. Through involvement of undergraduate and graduate student research, we are investigating the effectiveness of community-based interventions to improve vegetable intake and level of physical activity of children. Dr. Duffy and her students have numerous publications and presentations at national and international meetings. She has received several awards for excellence in teaching, research and service. Students who have trained with Dr. Duffy are advancing nutrition and health promotion through research, practice or public health leadership. Dr. Duffy has served as major advisor for and completed seventeen students in their Masters degree and three students in their Doctoral degree. She has served as associate advisor for numerous Master and Doctoral students, and provides research opportunities for undergraduates into her research laboratory each year. She currently serves as major advisor for five Masters students and two Doctoral students.