Dr Amy Reichelt
University of NSW
Dr Reichelt’s research looks at the effects of modern diets – loaded with sugars and fats – on both learning and memory at various life stages – as adolescents or as adults. In particular, she is examining changes to areas of the brain including the hippocampus, which is known to be involved with memory, and the prefrontal cortex, which is known to be vital for behavioural control.
Her research has shown that junk food diets can negatively affect aspects of memory, most especially when it comes to locations (ie. where things are), and can reduce decision making abilities.
Since Amy’s research affects so many people in their day-to-day lives, and is of growing importance for global health, she has many opportunities to talk about her work. She has given public talks in the City of Sydney’s Inspiring Science series and Nerd Nite in Sydney, as well as speaking on ABC RN’s ‘Life Matters’ and Channel Ten’s ‘The Project’. She also spoke at ‘Science Rewired 2013’ giving a presentation on how communication can change negative perceptions of scientists.