A Dietitian with a Passion for the Industry: Meet Nicole Litwin

At Herbalife Nutrition, we are proud to have more than 300 scientists on staff who work in departments such as research and development, education and training and quality control and assurance. We value the knowledge and innovative solutions scientists share and apply every day at work, which allows us to create science-based products that are safe and effective.

This year, we were honored to partner with the American Society for Nutrition (ASN) to establish a new annual scholarship for a promising student seeking an advanced degree in nutrition science or a related field.

We announced that Nicole Litwin, M.S., R.D., and Ph.D. candidate in Food Science and Human Nutrition at Colorado State University, had been chosen as our first U.S. scholarship recipient.

We invited Nicole to tell us about her background, research, and plans for the future. This is her story, in her own words.

An Industry-Inclined Scientist

I would say I am a strange bird in my professional field. As a registered dietitian – I hold a B.S. in Nutrition and Food Science and an M.S. in Clinical Nutrition – who is now pursuing a Ph.D., academic research would be the obvious path to follow. I am interested, however, in applying my knowledge to the functional food and dietary supplement industry.

My passion is making nutrition science more accessible to a wide range of audiences and I think working in theindustry is the perfect scenario for my skill set.

On the one hand, my training as a dietitian has given me the opportunity to work one-on-one with patients and develop the communication skills necessary when dealing with those who may not have a background in the nuanced world of nutrition science. On the other, my academic research qualifies me to design, conduct, manage and complete clinical trials that investigate the efficacy and safety of ingredients and products.

My goal is to combine both areas of expertise and dedicate my career to developing easily accessible and affordable food products or dietary supplements that provide major health benefits to consumers around the world.

Focus on Cardiovascular Health

As I started my Ph.D. research project, I was shocked to learn that heart disease accounts for 1 in every 4 deaths in the United States. The urgency of this topic influenced my Ph.D. research focus. My specialization is Functional Foods for Health, with a project aimed at improving cardiovascular and metabolic health in high-risk populations.

My Ph.D. dissertation focuses on the effects of red beetroot juice on cardiovascular and gut health, specifically in overweight or obese middle-aged and older adults. I am researching the potential benefit of beetroot juice on blood pressure control since it is known to contain high amounts of antioxidants, anti-inflammatory phytonutrients, and nitrate.

As I continue my journey as a nutrition scientist and dietitian, my hope is to translate knowledge into practical solutions for consumers in a sustainable and meaningful way.

The Herbalife Nutrition scholarship will undoubtedly help me succeed in my scientific career in the field of nutrition and food science. I am truly grateful to receive this award.

Susan Bowerman, M.S., RD, CSSD, CSOWM, FAND –Sr.Director, Worldwide Nutrition Education and Training

Susan BowermanM.S., R.D., CSSD, CSOWM, FAND – Sr. Director, Worldwide Nutrition Education and Training

Susan Bowerman earned a B.S. in biology with distinction from the University of Colorado, and received her M.S. in food science and nutrition from Colorado State University. She is a registered dietitian, holds two board certifications from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics as a certified specialist in sports dietetics, and a certified specialist in obesity and weight management, and is a Fellow of the Academy.