My research focuses on the impact of obesity on maternal and early childhood health. I work primarily with Pacific Islander populations – in the Pacific Islands and in Pacific communities in the US - who are consistently identified as the population most at risk of adverse, obesity-related health outcomes globally. Methodologically, I employ a life-course approach that utilizes cross-sectional, prospective cohort, and randomized controlled trial designs to address questions of causality and identify critical periods of susceptibility/ideal moments for intervention. I use mixed-methods approaches - combining quantitative and qualitative data - and strongly advocate for community-engaged approaches to research, intervention, and development of health policy.
I have ongoing projects and collaborations in American Samoa, Samoa, South Africa, Uganda, the US and several other global settings.
Specialized Terms: global non-communicable disease, obesity, diabetes, maternal and child health, pregnancy health, infant feeding, prenatal care
Diabetes Mellitus; Hypertension; Maternal Health Services; Maternal-Child Health Centers; Obesity; Pregnancy; Prenatal Care; Global Health; Samoa; American Samoa
Community Health; Genetics, Genomics, Epigenetics; Global Health; Maternal & Child Health; Nutrition; Obesity; Reproduction; Health Equity, Disparities, Social Determinants and Justice