"Policies, Environments, and Obesity Prevention"
Punam Ohri-Vachaspati, PhD, RD, is a professor of nutrition at the College of Health Solutions at Arizona State University, where she leads the ASU Food Environment and Policy research group. Her research, funded by the National Institutes of Health, the United States Department of Agriculture, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and local public and private organizations, examines social determinants of health, specifically in low-income minority communities. She studies the impact of federal, state, and local policies in shaping food and physical activity environments in school settings and in communities. Her work assesses the influence of access to healthy food and opportunities for physical activity on health outcomes and associated behaviors. She teaches graduate-level courses and mentors students interested in exploring public health approaches for improving healthy food access, eating behaviors, and health outcomes. Dr. Ohri-Vachaspati is a registered dietitian and received her PhD degree from Tufts University School of Nutrition in Food Policy and Applied Nutrition. She completed her undergraduate education at University of Delhi, India.