Nick Bellissimo, PhD
I am an Associate Professor in the School of Nutrition at Ryerson University. My research focuses on the physiological and environmental factors that contribute to appetite and energy imbalances in children with the goal of providing a foundation for advice on diet composition, physical activity, and environment in preventing and managing overeating. I am the recipient of the Dean’s Scholarly, Research and Creative Activity Award (2017), Sue Williams Excellence in Teaching Award (2016), and Dean’s Teaching Award (2014). I am also a member of several journal editorial boards, scientific adviser to government agencies and institutes, and the food industry.
Neil Brett, PhD
I am a Postdoctoral Fellow in the School of Nutrition at Ryerson University. I received my PhD from the School of Human Nutrition at McGill University in 2017. My PhD research looked at how vitamin D interventions in young children effected vitamin D status as well as bone and muscle health. During my PhD I received multiple awards and won research competitions including: The American Society for Nutrition’s Clinical Emerging Leader Award (2017), Young Investigator Awards from The International Conference on Children’s Bone Health (2017) and The Canadian Musculoskeletal Conference (2016), winner of The American Society for Nutrition’s Emerging Leaders in Nutrition Poster Competition (2016 and 2017) as well as the Canadian Nutrition Society’s Poster Competition (2017) and a finalist for The American Society for Nutrition’s Graduate Student Research Award (2015). As a postdoc, my research now focuses on the impact of food and nutrients on appetite, energy balance and cognition in children and adults. This work is designed to inform future nutrition and health recommendations in an effort to improve health and wellbeing across the lifespan.
Jennifer Lee, BSc
I am in my final year of the Nutrition and Food program at Ryerson University and am the NExT Lab manager. I completed my Honours Bachelor of Science degree in Biology and Psychology at McMaster University. My previous research looked at declining cognitive performance and sensory functions in mice with neurodegenerative disorders. I joined ND Labs to enhance my learning experience and develop hands-on research skills. I had the opportunity to lead the study ‘Effects of Potatoes and Other Carbohydrates Consumed at Breakfast on Cognition, Glycaemia and Satiety in Children.’ I presented the findings at Experimental Biology in April 2017 in Chicago, IL, USA. We found that French fry consumption enhanced verbal declarative memory in 9-14 yr old children. In May 2017, I received the Applied Physiology, Nutrition, and Metabolism Undergraduate Research Award for this work. I am currently assisting in many ongoing projects in ND labs while simultaneously performing my duties as Lab Manager.
Terence Boateng, BSc
I am a current BASc student in the Nutrition and Food program at Ryerson University. I hold an Honours Bachelor of Science degree in Kinesiology from the University of Waterloo, and am a CSEP Certified Exercise Physiologist. As a member of ND labs I have had opportunities to assist in multiple studies, including a cross-sectional study examining the validity and reliability of four different types of body composition assessment tools. Recently I have worked on studies examining the effect of different dietary carbohydrates at breakfast on memory, cognition, glycemic response and satiety in children. In addition to my role at ND labs, I am an assistant manager of NExT Lab where I am involved in running fitness, metabolic and body composition tests on varsity athletes and community members.
I am a current BASc student in the Nutrition and Food program at Ryerson University. As an assistant manager of NExT lab, I am involved in providing services such as physical fitness, energy expenditure and body composition testing to varsity athletes and the community. Previously, I was involved in a cross-sectional study examining the validity and reliability of four different types of body composition assessment tools. I was also involved in research studies examining the effect of different dietary carbohydrates on glycemic response, cognition and satiety in children. Currently, I will be leading a study examining the effect of high-intensity interval exercise and chocolate milk on glycemic response, subjective appetite and cognition in children. I am striving to pursue a career in sports nutrition and pediatric health.
I am a fourth year undergraduate student completing a Bachelor of Applied Science; majoring in Nutrition and Food with a concentration in Nutrition Research. My current work at ND labs is focused on In vitro and In vivo digestion of carbohydrate containing foods. Specifically, I am working alongside my colleagues to standardize the Dedicated Ryerson In-vitro Digester (DRUID) to successfully mimic postprandial glucose release. I have also taken a primary role in a cross sectional study that investigated the validity and reliability of our test equipment to estimate body composition, and presented the results at the Canadian Nutrition Society annual conference in May 2017. I am the recipient of the Merit Award in 2015 and Alumni Award in 2016 from the department of Nutrition and Food. I hope to use my new skills in data collection, analysis and interpretation as I pursue a career in food science and nutrition research.
Cydney Prusky, BA
I am an undergraduate student in the Nutrition and Food program at Ryerson University and I hold a degree from McGill University majoring in Psychology and Behavioural Science. As a research assistant in ND labs I have had the opportunity to assist with multiple studies. These include a study examining the effects of different dietary carbohydrates at breakfast on memory, glycemic response and subjective appetite in children, as well as a study examining the effects of different dietary carbohydrates at breakfast on satiety in children. Currently, I am leading a study examining the effects of high intensity interval exercise and chocolate milk on glycemic response, cognition and satiety in children. I look forward to further developing my abilities as a researcher with ND labs and hope to continue to do research with children in the future.
I am an undergraduate student in my third year of Biomedical Science at Ryerson University. I joined ND labs to improve my skills as a researcher and to learn to perform metabolic, fitness and body composition tests with NExT lab. At ND labs I have to assisted on a study that examined the effect of different dietary carbohydrates at breakfast on satiety in children. In the upcoming months I will be assisting with a study that will be examining high intensity interval exercise on glycemic response and cognition in children.
Taylor Polecrone, BBA
I am a second-year undergraduate student in the Nutrition and Food program at Ryerson University. Before Ryerson, I studied at Wilfrid Laurier University and obtained a Bachelor of Business Administration with a minor in Psychology. A few years after graduation I decided to pursue my passion and study nutrition. At ND Labs I look forward to learning more about nutrition research, NExT lab testing services and developing hands-on skills.