Dariush Mozaffarian

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Dariush Mozaffarian
Born(1969-08-19)August 19, 1969
Portland, Maine
  • The World's Most Influential Scientific Minds, Thomson Reuters, 2016 [1]
  • Chanchlani Global Health Award, McMaster University, 2017 [2]
  • Walker Prize, Museum of Science, Boston, 2018 [3]
Scientific career
Fieldsnutrition, epidemiology, medicine, public health research

Dariush Mozaffarian (born August 19, 1969) is an American cardiologist, Dean and Jean Mayer Professor at the Gerald J. and Dorothy R. Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University, and Professor of Medicine at Tufts University School of Medicine.

Mozaffarian is the author of over 400 scientific publications and has served as an adviser for the US and Canadian governments, American Heart Association, World Health Organization, and the United Nations.


Mozaffarian received a BS in biological sciences at Stanford University (Phi Beta Kappa) and MD at Columbia University (Alpha Omega Alpha). He took his residency at Stanford, and was a fellow in cardiovascular medicine at the University of Washington, where he also received his MPH. He earned a Doctorate in Public Health from Harvard.[4]

Academic career[edit]

Mozaffarian joined the faculty of the Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH) in 2006, where he later founded the school's program in Cardiovascular Epidemiology. From 2004 to 2007, he served as an adjunct faculty member at the Tufts University School of Medicine. Mozaffarian was an associate professor at HSPH, as well as an associate professor in the Division of Cardiovascular Medicine at Harvard Medical School and Brigham and Women’s Hospital.[5]

On July 1, 2014, Mozaffarian became the Dean of Tufts University's Gerald J. and Dorothy R. Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy.[6] He is the Jean Mayer Professor of Nutrition, and Professor of Medicine at Tufts University School of Medicine.[7]


Mozaffarian is the author of over 400 scientific publications in areas concerning diet as it relates to obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular diseases, as well as on policy and evidence-based approaches to diminish these burdens.[7] Mozaffarian is the principal investigator of the Global Dietary Database,[8] and Food-PRICE (Policy Review and Intervention Cost-Effectiveness).[9] As well, he was selected to serve on advisory boards for the US and Canadian governments, American Heart Association, World Health Organization, and the United Nations.[7]

In 2011, Mozaffarian published a study which found that the quality of one's diet is strongly associated with weight gain. The study also found that out of all the foods examined, potato chips were most strongly associated with weight gain.[10][11] In 2014, Mozaffarian co-authored a controversial meta-analysis pertaining to the association between saturated fat consumption and risk of heart disease.[12] Despite the meta-analysis's conclusion that the evidence "does not clearly support guidelines that encourage high consumption of polyunsaturated fatty acids and low consumption of total saturated fats," Mozaffarian told Science Insider that "Personally, I think the results suggest that fish and vegetable oils should be encouraged."[13] In a 2018 paper published in the BMJ, Mozaffarian and co-author Nita G. Forouhi argued that "Nutrition science has often been criticized as unreliable, but has made vital contributions to human health" and that going forward, "All stakeholders, including the food industry, must be part of a collective effort to solve the tremendous global challenge of nutrition and health."[14]

Honors and awards[edit]

In 2016, Thomson Reuters named Mozaffarian as one of the World's Most Influential Scientific Minds.[1] In 2018, Mozaffarian was awarded the Chanchlani Global Health Research Award by McMaster University.[2] That same year, he was awarded the Walker Prize by the Museum of Science, Boston[3] and was a Presidential Symposium Speaker for the American Society for Nutrition.[15]

Public impact[edit]

As the Dean of the Friedman School, Mozaffarian has been active in the School's Public Impact Initiatives, including Food is Medicine, and has participated in the bipartisan sponsored working group.[16][17]

In January 2018, while on Capitol Hill to show his support for the launch of a Food Is Medicine Working Group within Congress’s House Hunger Caucus, he stated, “As a cardiologist, I’ve been thinking about food—and how food is missing from the health-care system—for twenty years now.....One in four dollars in the federal budget is spent on health care. One in five dollars in the entire U.S. economy is spent on health care, and that is only going to go up until we address food."[16]

Personal life[edit]

Mozaffarian and his wife have three children together. He also trains as a Third Degree Black Belt in Taekwondo.[7]


  1. ^ a b "Five Tufts Researchers Are Among World's Most Influential". Tufts Now. 2016-02-05. Retrieved 2018-10-26.
  2. ^ a b "Chanchlani Global Health Research Award". McMaster University. Retrieved 4 December 2018.
  3. ^ a b "Museum of Science Honors Dariush Mozaffarian, MD, DrPH with the 2018 Walker Prize for Superlative Work in Nutrition and Obesity". mos.org. September 18, 2018. Retrieved March 15, 2019.
  4. ^ "New Friedman School Dean". Tufts University. Retrieved 13 May 2014.
  5. ^ "Tufts University Names Dariush Mozaffarian as Dean of Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy". Tufts University. 13 May 2014. Retrieved 23 July 2015.
  6. ^ "Dariush Mozaffarian named dean of Tufts Friedman School". hsph.harvard.edu. Retrieved March 15, 2019.
  7. ^ a b c d "Dariush Mozaffarian". nutrition.tufts.edu. Retrieved March 15, 2019.
  8. ^ "Core Team Members". globaldietarydatabase.com. Retrieved March 20, 2019.
  9. ^ "Dariush Mozaffarian". food-price.org. Retrieved March 20, 2019.
  10. ^ Mozaffarian, Dariush; Hao, Tao; Rimm, Eric B.; Willett, Walter C.; Hu, Frank B. (23 June 2011). "Changes in Diet and Lifestyle and Long-Term Weight Gain in Women and Men". New England Journal of Medicine. 364 (25): 2392–2404. doi:10.1056/NEJMoa1014296. PMC 3151731. PMID 21696306.
  11. ^ Song, Sora (23 June 2011). "Study: The Best and Worst Foods for Healthy Weight". Time. Retrieved 23 July 2015.
  12. ^ Chowdhury, Rajiv; Warnakula, Samantha; Kunutsor, Setor; Crowe, Francesca; Ward, Heather A.; Johnson, Laura; Franco, Oscar H.; Butterworth, Adam S.; Forouhi, Nita G.; Thompson, Simon G.; Khaw, Kay-Tee; Mozaffarian, Dariush; Danesh, John; Di Angelantonio, Emanuele (18 March 2014). "Association of Dietary, Circulating, and Supplement Fatty Acids With Coronary Risk". Annals of Internal Medicine. 160 (6): 398–406. doi:10.7326/M13-1788. PMID 24723079.
  13. ^ Kupferschmidt, Kai (24 March 2014). "Scientists Fix Errors in Controversial Paper About Saturated Fats". Science Insider. Retrieved 23 July 2015.
  14. ^ Mozaffarian, Dariush; Forouhi, Nita G. (2018). "Dietary guidelines and health—is nutrition science up to the task?". BMJ: k822. doi:10.1136/bmj.k822.
  15. ^ "Friedman At ASN". nutrition.tufts.edu. May 22, 2018. Archived from the original on March 23, 2019. Retrieved March 15, 2019.
  16. ^ a b Julie Flaherty (January 17, 2018). "Healthy Diets for Better Health". now.tufts.edu. Retrieved March 15, 2019.
  17. ^ "Food is Medicine: Addressing Hunger as a Health Issue". .chlpi.org. January 17, 2018. Retrieved March 15, 2019.

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