1034NW, 300 N. Ingalls Building Ann Arbor, MI 48109
Julie Lumeng is a developmental and behavioral pediatrician who studies how social influences on eating behavior and children's cognitions around food may alter dietary composition and overweight risk, particularly in preschool-aged children and younger. Peers are well-documented to influence choice of food in social settings, but how these influences operate in children of diverse ethnicity and socioeconomic status is less well-understood. She studies children's eating behavior in Head Start settings, both through the direct observation of behavior during a natural meal and through the presentation of unique behavioral tasks to children that test their cognitions around food. Dr. Lumeng also examines the influences on young children's overweight risk through the analysis of large data sets, with a particular focus on child care experience and quality, and neighborhood characteristics. Other projects include the evaluation of mother-child interactions around eating, and how maternal behavior affects a child's eating behavior, both in preschoolers and infants.