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Nutritional Sciences News & Highlights


2021 Jean Andrews Centennial Lectureship: Dr. Anne Mctiernan

2021 Jean Andrews Centennial Lectureship: Dr. Anne Mctiernan

Dr. Anne Mctiernan, a Pioneer in Women's Health Research 

This year, the Department of Nutritional Sciences is pleased to host Dr. Anne McTiernan as the 2021 Jean Andrews Centennial Visiting Professor.After securing her bachelor's degree in sociology at Boston University in 1974, Dr. McTiernan went on to obtain a Ph.D. in Epidemiology from the University of Washington in 1982 and then a M.D. in Internal Medicine from New York Medical College in 1989.Dr. McTiernan now serves as a member of the Public Health Sciences Division of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and a Professor of Epidemiology and Geriatrics at the University of Washington Schools of Public Health and Medicine.

Dr. McTiernan is a pioneer in women's health research, leading studies that investigate the effects of obesity, diet, and exercise on breast cancer risk and prognosis, with the goal to reduce cancers caused by excess weight and sedentary lifestyles and improve survival of all cancer patients.She was PI of the National Cancer Institute's Seattle Transdisciplinary Research on Energetics and Cancer program, a co-investigator in the Women's Health Initiative, and has served on the Physical Activity Guidelines and Advisory Committee of the U.S.Department of Health and Human Services.In addition to publishing over 400 scientific manuscripts, Dr. McTiernan has also published a memoir entitled Starved: A Nutrition Doctor's Journey from Empty to Full, which chronicles her journey through a childhood of abuse and eating disorders. Moreover, in February of 2021, Dr. McTiernan published the book Cured: A Doctor's Journey from Panic to Peace detailing her panic-ridden journey of self-discovery through medical school. Dr. McTiernan continues to contribute to the field, publishing several articles and completing several interviews in the first two months of 2021 alone. When asked, "What is the connection between physical activity and weight loss and the chances of getting cancer", this is what Dr. McTiernan had to say. 

"We know that being overweight and having a sedentary lifestyle is associated with an increase in risk for developing certain cancers. Currently, with more than two in three adults considered to be overweight or obese in the U.S., understanding the reasons for this increased cancer risk is critical. Nothing is guaranteed, but exercise and weight control are like wearing a seat belt—they reduce your risk."

History of the Jean Andrews Centennial Lectureship

Dr. McTiernan joins an esteemed list of previous awardees, including Dr. Kevin Hall (2019), Dr. Rob Knight (2018), Dr. Edward Giovanucci (2017), Dr. Bruce Spiegelman (2016), Dr. David Heber (2015), Dr. Randy Jirtle (2014), Dr. Walter Willett (2013), and Dr. John Milner (2012). Hosting these lectures would not be possible without support from the Jean Andrews Centennial Faculty Fellowship in Human Nutrition, established in 1983 by an endowment from Dr. Jean Andrews and matched by The University of Texas System Board of Regents during UT-Austin's centennial year.Dr. Andrews, a 1944 graduate of Human Ecology, was a unique scholar who explored and mastered the disciplines that reflect the human experience in the natural world.Also known as "the Pepper Lady," Dr. Andrews studied human nutrition, botany, marine biology, and anthropology and was recognized as an author, painter, and inveterate world traveler.

Hear More of Dr. Mctiernan's story here

What do Weight and Exercise Have to do with Breast Cancer?

​We will be hosting a Youtube livestream for this event on April 1st at 6pm. Click on the link to set a reminder for yourself. 

​Cured: A doctor's Journey from Panic to Peace