Melanie D Hingle, PhD, MPH, RDn

Assistant Professor, Nutritional Sciences
Assistant Professor, Public Health
Phone Number: 
(520) 621-3087
Professional Bio: 

Dr. Hingle is a nutrition scientist, public health researcher, and Registered Dietitian Nutritionist with over 15 years of training and experience in health promotion and behavioral sciences, assessment of dietary intake and physical activity, and the design and conduct of studies focused on health behavior change and metabolic disease prevention in children and families. Her postdoctoral training in behavioral nutrition included the application of behavioral theory and formative research methodologies to inform the design and conduct of behavior change interventions. Dr. Hingle’s research program is focused on understanding how and why diet and physical activity behaviors are initiated and sustained, and the application of this knowledge to development of effective approaches to motivating health behavior change in youth. 

She is principal investigator of the National Institutes of Health-funded E.P.I.C. Kids Study, a Southern Arizona YMCA-based diabetes prevention program for 9 to 12 year-old children and their families. This work has enhanced her understanding of the etiology of metabolic disease, reinforced the importance of formative and participatory research in creating effective and sustainable community-based interventions, and reminded her of the benefits (and challenges) of trans-disciplinary research teams.

These efforts are directly applicable to her work at the Arizona Cancer Center, where she is collaborating with colleagues from the University of Arizona College of Medicine, Rutgers University, Phoenix Children’s Hospital and Vignet Corp, to develop and test a parent-focused intervention designed to support child cancer survivors in making lifestyle changes necessary to prevent obesity and obesity-related chronic illness. This project exemplifies the integration of her scholarly and professional pursuits, namely, development and dissemination of affordable, accessible, and sustainable community programs and partnerships to promote health and prevent chronic disease.

Dr. Hingle is also frequently sought out for her expertise in the use of wireless and networked technologies (e.g., mobile phones, software apps, sensors) to measure and intervene on health behavior, and she is engaged in professional service aligned with this expertise at the local, national, and international level.

Dr. Hingle is the 2015-16 Chair of the Obesity Society’s Electronic and Mobile Health Section, an Officer in the International Society for Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity’s e-Health/m-Health Special Interest Group, and co-Chair of the University of Arizona’s Mobile Health Special Interest Group

Research Information

Research Program: 
Cancer Prevention and Control
Research Focus: 

Mechanisms of health-related behavior change; health behavior change intervention design and conduct; metabolic disease prevention with an emphasis in pediatric populations and families; use of mobile and wireless technologies to influence health- and weight-related behaviors

Selected Publications: 

Academic Information

Fellowship: 
Behavioral Nutrition – USDA-ARS Children’s Nutrition Research Center and Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas
Doctorate: 
Nutritional Sciences, The University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ
Master's Degree: 
MPH, Epidemiology, The University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ
Undergraduate School: 
BS, Nutritional Sciences/Dietetics, The University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ