Faculty

Dr. Sangita Sharma

Endowed Chair in Aboriginal Health; Centennial Professor / Professor in Aboriginal and Global Health Research

Department of Medicine

Division of Endocrinology & Metabolism

About Me

I am currently the Endowed Chair in Aboriginal Health and a Professor in Aboriginal and Global Health Research at the University of Alberta. My research experience combines nutritional sciences, epidemiology, health promotion and community-based interventions that specifically focus on the development of dietary assessment methodologies for multi-ethnic populations globally. I have over 20 years of experience assessing nutrition, physical activity and program delivery in over 11 countries and 22 populations. Research grants (PI/Co-PI=29), and publications (n=92) have been multidisciplinary, multi-ethnic, and included major chronic diseases: 1) development of dietary assessment methodologies for multi-ethnic and indigenous populations to assess food, nutrient, food group, heterocyclic aromatic amine intake, and determine dietary adequacy; 2) developing and evaluating community- based dietary and lifestyle (including physical activity) intervention studies for obesity and chronic disease prevention; 3) determining diet-disease associations in 215,000 people, for cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and mortality; 4) examining nutrient-gene interactions and risk of cancer in different ethnic groups (African Americans, Native Hawaiians, Latinos, Japanese Americans, Japanese Brazilians, and Caucasians); 5) monitoring the effects of climate change on diet and lifestyle. Dr. Sharma has had extensive population subgroup experience, which includes undertaking dietary assessment studies, with: Canada (First Nations, Metis, Inuit, Inuvialuit), USA (Apache, Navajo, Alaskan Natives, Latino, African American, Japanese American, Native Hawaiian, Caucasian), England (African-origin, Pakistani, Indian), Cameroon (urban/rural), Jamaica, Barbados, Trinidad, Brazil (Japanese Brazilians), Indonesia (0-24 months old), Nepal (pregnant women).

Other Activities and Affiliations

  • Leader of the Aboriginal and Global Health Group

Membership on Panels, Boards, Working Groups, Networks

  • Canadian Public Health Association
  • Alberta Institute for Human Nutrition
  • Canadian Circumpolar Institute
  • American Society for Nutrition
  • World Public Health Nutrition Association
  • Canadian Society for International Health
  • Healthy Caribbean Coalition
  • Association for Nutrition
  • American Diabetes Association
  • American Association for Cancer Research
  • American Society for Nutritional Sciences
  • American Society for Clinical Nutrition
  • Society for International Nutrition Research
  • UK Voluntary Register of Nutritionists – Registered Public Health Nutritionist
  • The Nutrition Society, UK

Community Group involvement

  • Wisest Summer Student Program, 2012
  • National Aboriginal Day 2012
  • TAWOW Aboriginal Student donations 2012

Research

Research Areas

Aboriginal Health and chronic disease

Research Goals
To create a world-renowned go-to place for sustainable, evidence-based intervention research working to enhance the health and well-being of Indigenous and global populations. The Aboriginal and Global Health Research Group is enhancing health and reducing chronic disease prevalence among Indigenous Peoples and multi-ethnic populations along identified research priority themes, by generating evidence and intervention and expediting its transfer into community based projects.

Major Achievements
Healthy Foods North: A successful nutrition and physical activity programto reduce obesity in Inuit populations in Arctic Canada.
Centennial Professor, University of Alberta, 2011;
The Nutrition Society Silver Medal Award, 2010;
Advanced Programme: European Nutrition Leadership Platform 2012;
Dannon Institute Academic Mid-Career Nutrition Fellowship 2010;
Special Commendation for Excellent Research, Caribbean Health Research Council 2009;
University Research Travel Awards 2002-2008 (x4);
European Nutrition Leadership Program Fellowship 1996;
Research Project Prize, University of Wales 1992

Trainees
Nonsikelelo Mathe
Post-Doctoral Research Fellow (2011-Present)
Mary Ani-Amponsah
PhD Student (2011 - Present)


Research Keywords

Aboriginal youth, Air pollutants, Allergens and pollutants, Asthma, Cancer screening services, Children, Chronic disease education, Chronic disease prevention, Community-based research, Diabetes, Diabetes prevention, Dietary influence, Dietary patterns, Dietary patterns and strategies, Disease prevention, Education intervention and evaluation, Health care services, health promotion, Health service access, Health services access, Indigenous health, Indigenous populations, Indigenous youth, Integrated human observation study, Multiethnic populations, Multiethnic youth, New Canadian populations, Northwest Territories, Nutrition, Nutrition intervention, obesity, Obesity prevention, Patient experiences, Pediatric asthma, Program evaluation, Senior health, Type 2 Diabetes, Urban Indigenous populations, Urban populations, Urban youth, Youth