I am a health economist with main research interests in the determinants of health behavior, outcomes, and inequality. As a research economist in the Diet, Safety, and Health Economics Branch of the Food Economics Division at the Economic Research Service, my research program examines how information, prices, and food assistance program participation affect dietary intake and diet-related health. At the present time, I am investigating a wide variety of issues in this domain including:

  1. The effects of restaurant menu labeling regulations on American consumers' use of calorie information when ordering restaurant foods and how much the regulations change the marginal effect of a meal away from home on daily calorie intake;
  2. The impacts of soda taxes on daily calorie, sugar intake, and blood sugar among Americans;
  3. Whether providing parents with personalized nutrition/health information, BMI-for-age report cards, and weight scales along with goal-setting and soft commitment can help mitigate the rise of child overweight in urban Vietnam;
  4. How SNAP participation affects time spent in food-related activities over the benefit month ("SNAP benefit cycle") as well as other uses of time that have implications for own and household health; and
  5. How worksite flexibility affects American workers' food-related activity. 

In a separate line of work, I am also currently investigating whether there is evidence that changing environmental conditions have the potential to affect productivity in schools and workplaces. Prior work has shown that fine particulate matter, which easily penetrates indoor settings, dampens cognitive capacity. To shed light on how fine particulate matter may affect brain health, I am researching whether its effect on cognition varies by cognitive function.

My prior research has been published in peer-reviewed economics and public health journals. For a copy of my CV, please click here.