Nicole Litwin, a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition at Colorado State University, is the first recipient of a new scholarship from the American Society for Nutrition.
Litwin, who is specializing in functional foods for health, has received numerous awards, honors and scholarships, and the latest is the inaugural Herbalife Nutrition Scholarship from the American Society for Nutrition. She’s also been named the 2018/2019 Recognized Young Dietitian of the Year by the Northern Colorado Dietetic Association, and has received the 2019 NeoLife Student Phenolic Research Award and the Second Century Scholarship from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. In addition, Litwin was named 2019 Outstanding Graduate Student in the Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition.
Functional Foods and Human Health Laboratory
Litwin is a graduate research assistant in the Functional Foods and Human Health Laboratory, where she helps design, conduct, manage and complete clinical trials that investigate the efficacy of various food and dietary supplement interventions to improve cardiovascular and metabolic health in high-risk human populations.
“I have observed Nicole to be thoughtful, detail-oriented, highly-motivated, mature, and reliable – all qualities important to conducting quality, high-level research,” said Litwin’s mentor and supervisor, Assistant Professor Sarah Johnson. “She is an exceptional student in terms of research, academic and professional potential. I have no doubt that she will make significant contributions to the field in her career.”
Litwin’s broad research interests include understanding the mechanisms of how foods, bioactive food components and dietary supplements impact the human cardiovascular system and gut microbiota, and how physiological responses to these dietary interventions vary across human populations and the lifespan.
Litwin is an active member of several organizations and has held leadership positions with the Research Dietetic Practice Group of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, the Nutrition Translation Research Interest Section of the American Society for Nutrition, and the Rocky Mountain Section of the Institute of Food Technologists.
After graduation, Litwin plans to pursue a career in the food or dietary supplement industry with hopes of formulating healthy food and dietary supplement products and conducting research to develop health claims on the effects of such products.
“Researching dietary interventions that are realistic, affordable, and sustainable for consumers and the environment, while also being linked to health outcomes, is of utmost importance to me as a registered dietitian,” said Litwin. “Identifying effective foods and dietary supplements that can fit into an overall healthy eating pattern, while providing major health benefits, is one step forward to decreasing global morbidity and mortality.”