Josiemer Mattei

Assistant Professor of Nutrition

655 Huntington Avenue
Boston, Massachusetts 02115


My research focuses on racial and ethnic variations in genetic, dietary, and psychosocial determinants of chronic diseases and physiological stress (allostatic load) as a framework to explain and alleviate health disparities in racial/ethnic groups, particularly in Latinos in the US and Latin America. I have received multiple pilot funding awards, and an NIH-National Heart Lung and Blood Institute K01 Mentored Career Development Award to Promote Faculty Diversity. With these grants, I am currently developing two major lines of research:

  1. Evaluating the relationship between sociocultural attitudes and diet quality, and how the traditional diets of Latinos relate to the cardio-metabolic outcomes using population-based epidemiological studies of diverse Latino ethnic groups in the US and in Puerto Rico;
  2. Developing culturally-tailored dietary interventions and nutritional programs to improve the consumption of high-quality traditional foods as a strategy to prevent diabetes and obesity in Puerto Rico and among Latinos in the Boston metro area.

My general areas of interest include:

  • Diet quality and type 2 diabetes, obesity, CVD, and related cardiometabolic outcomes
  • Ethnic-specific foods, dietary habits, and nutritional intake, and how these shape racial/ethnic disparities in cardiometabolic outcomes and chronic diseases
  • Sociocultural aspects of diet and health, and their application in culturally-tailored lifestyle interventions
  • The global nutrition transition; establishing dietary interventions to improve diet quality and prevent diabetes in Latin America
  • Effect of variants in genes on glucose and lipid metabolism pathways, on changes in weight and glucose/insulin markers in response to diet interventions; gene-diet interactions and nutrigenomics
  • Community and population-based health promotion programs for minority populations

I am also particularly interested in promoting the inclusion of under-represented groups in the epidemiologic and community health studies, of minority students in public health education, and of women and minorities in science and academia.


  • PhD; Nutritional Biochemistry and Metabolism, Friedman School of Nutrition, Tufts University
  • MS; Nutritional Biochemistry and Metabolism-Specialization in Genetics, Tufts University
  • MPH; Epidemiology and Biostatistics, School of Medicine, Tufts University
  • BS; Industrial Microbiology, University of Puerto Rico, Mayagüez Campus