Qisi Yao

  • PhD Student
  • Department of Nutrition
  • Email: qisi_yao@uri.edu
  • Office Location: Remote




Byte Lab

Courses – Teaching Assistant 

  • NFS 207: General Nutrition
  • NFS 441: Micronutrient Nutrition


Qisi Yao is a 2nd year PhD student in the Department of Nutrition and Food Sciences. She is a graduate teaching assistant and she is a part of Dr. Vadiveloo’s Big Data and Eating Decisions (BYTE) Lab. She is passionate about translating nutritional science knowledge into public health interventions and policies with the aim to promote population health and equity. Before coming to URI, she worked as a project consultant for World Health Organization (WHO)/Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) to facilitate the work of updating recommendations on nutrient requirements for children aged 0-36 months. She also worked at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute on breast cancer prevention and early detection. Qisi completed her BS in Neuroscience at the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor and her MPH in Epidemiology and Biostatistics at Tufts University. She enjoys yoga, kayaking, and movies in her free time.


  • Emerging Leaders in Nutrition Science Abstract Recognition Award- American Society for Nutrition, 2021
  • Outstanding Student Poster Presentation Award-Association of Prevention Teaching and Research, 2019
  • Big Cities Health Inventory (BCHI) Student Grant Award-Big Cities Health Coalition, 2018


Food environments and chronic disease prevention and control


  • Ph.D., Health Sciences, University of Rhode Island, 2020-present
  • MPH, Epidemiology & Biostatistics, Tufts University School of Medicine, 2019
  • B.S. Neuroscience, University of Michigan, 2015

Selected Publications

Beauchesne AR, Cara KC, Chen J, Yao Q, Penkert LP, Yang W, Chung M. Effectiveness of multimodal nutrition interventions during pregnancy to achieve 2009 Institute of Medicine gestational weight gain guidelines: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Ann Med. 2021 Dec;53(1):1179-1197. doi: 10.1080/07853890.2021.1947521. PMID: 34263669; PMCID: PMC8284157.

Vadiveloo MK, Sotos-Prieto M, Parker HW, Yao Q, Thorndike AN. Contributions of Food Environments to Dietary Quality and Cardiovascular Disease Risk. Curr Atheroscler Rep. 2021 Feb 17;23(4):14. doi: 10.1007/s11883-021-00912-9. PMID: 33594516.

Chung M, Ruan M, Cara KC, Yao Q, Penkert LP, Chen J. Vitamin D and Calcium in Children 0-36 Months: A Scoping Review of Health Outcomes. J Am Coll Nutr. 2020 Jul 14:1-30. doi: 10.1080/07315724.2020.1774822. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 32662755.

Igho-Osagie E, Cara K, Wang D, Yao Q, Penkert LP, Cassidy A, Ferruzzi M, Jacques PF, Johnson EJ, Chung M, Wallace T. Short-Term Tea Consumption Is Not Associated with a Reduction in Blood Lipids or Pressure: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials. J Nutr. 2020 Dec 10;150(12):3269-3279. doi: 10.1093/jn/nxaa295. PMID: 33188386.