Faculty Profiles


Varady, Krista

Academic Title

Associate Professor, Kinesiology and Nutrition

Contact Info

Phone: 312-996-7897
Email: varady@uic.edu
Office Location: 1919 W. Taylor St. (AHSB), Room 532

Program Affiliations

PhD in Kinesiology and Nutrition, Master of Science in Nutrition Science, Bachelor of Science in Nutrition Science


The long-term goal of my research program is to test the ability of novel dietary restriction strategies to facilitate weight loss and decrease cardiovascular risk in obese populations. At present, there are many dietary approaches to weight loss. However, if one diet were clearly superior in helping obese individuals lose weight, than only one dietary intervention would be needed. In reality there are a number of obese individuals who have tried each of these diets, but have failed to adhere to them and observe weight loss. As such, new dietary interventions need to be tested to provide obese individuals with options for weight loss. The most common dietary restriction protocol implemented is daily calorie restriction (CR), which involves reducing energy intake by 15 to 40% of needs daily. Another dietary restriction regimen employed, although far less commonly, is alternate day fasting (ADF). ADF regimens include a “feed day” where food is consumed ad-libitum over 24-h, alternated with a “fast day”, where food intake is partially or completely reduced for 24-h. ADF regimens were created to increase adherence to dietary restriction protocols since these diets only require energy restriction every other day, rather than every day, as with CR.

Current Research:
Developing novel diet and exercise regimens to facilitate weight loss and decrease cardiovascular disease risk in humans; Examining the intermediate role of adipose tissue in mediating the cardio-protective effects of diet and exercise; Investigating the behavioral factors that influence adherence to dietary restriction strategies

Selected Publications

Varady KA, Lamarche B. Lipoprint adequately estimates LDL size distribution, but not absolute size, versus polyacrylamide gradient gel electrophoresis. Lipids. 2011; 46: 1163-7.

Varady KA, Bhutani S, Klempel MC, Kroeger CM. Comparison of effects of diet versus exercise weight loss regimens on LDL and HDL particle size in obese adults. Lipids in Health and Disease. 2011; 10: 119.

Varady KA. Intermittent versus daily calorie restriction: which diet regimen is more effective for weight loss? Obesity Reviews. 2011; 12: 593-601.

Klempel MC, Varady KA. Reliability of leptin, but not adiponectin, as a biomarker for diet-induced weight loss in humans. Nutrition Reviews. 2011; 69: 145-54.

Varady KA, Bhutani S, Klempel M, Phillips SA. Improvements in vascular health by a low-fat diet, but not a high-fat diet, are mediated by changes in adipose tissue physiology. Nutrition Journal. 2011; 10: 8.

Current Grants and Contracts

American Heart Association
Alternate day fasting combined with exercise for weigh loss and cardio-protection
Role: Co-I (PI: Bhutani, S)

National Institutes of Health
Alternate day fasting for weight loss, weight maintenance, and cardio-protection
Role: PI

American Heart Association
Alternate day fasting: Effects on lipid metabolism
Role: PI
01/01/10 – 12/31/14 

National Institutes of Health
Effects of low carbohydrate and low fat diets on endothelial function in obesity
Role: Co-I (PI: Phillips, SA)
01/01/10 – 12/31/14


Postdoctoral Fellowship, University of California, Berkeley
PhD, McGill University, Motreal, Quebec, Canada
BS, University of Guelph, Guelph, Ontario, Canada