How do the everyday realities of lifestyle, nutrition, and social structure shape people’s wellbeing around the world?

This is the central question motivating my research and teaching. I am a biocultural medical anthropologist who works primarily in India and Brazil.




My scholarship falls into three major areas:

  1. In urban North and South India, I explore how the day-to-day management of type 2 diabetes shapes women’s abilities to participate in social roles considered appropriate for women of their age, class, ethnic, and caste groups. Along with this I study how women experience mental health and ill health.
  2. In rural Amazonia, Brazil, I study the links between food insecurity, mental health, and chronic diseases.
  3. I also co-host the American Anthropological Association-sponsored podcast Speaking of Race, a first-of-its-kind transdisciplinary project where I join with biological anthropologist Jim Bindon and historian of science Erik L. Peterson to explore our centuries-long debates over how to define difference, and why it continues to matter today.