Heather RasmussenAssociate Professor, Director of Dietetic Internship
PhD Molecular Nutrition, 2008, University of Nebraska-Lincoln
MS Nutritional Biochemistry, 2005, University of Nebraska-Lincoln
BS Nutrition & Dietetics, 2001, University of Nebraska-Lincoln
My experience as both a researcher and registered dietitian nutritionist has centered on how dietary intake impacts the gastrointestinal tract, including gut microbiota and intestinal permeability. Not only is dietary intake central to the health of the gastrointestinal tract, but also to the health of the entire individual; through dietary modulation of gut microbiota, microbial metabolites, and intestinal permeability we may be able to identify additional means by which we can improve our overall health. Specifically, I am interested in how supplements such as prebiotics can modify both gastrointestinal symptoms and markers of intestinal health in humans.
As Dietetic Internship Director, I coordinate all aspects of the dietetic internship, including working with preceptors and ensuring students the training and experiences needed to become registered dietitian nutritionists.
I believe that a thorough understanding of the mechanisms behind our dietary recommendations is important for every student to understand and am passionate about understanding and disseminating these mechanisms to future nutrition professionals. I am also committed to providing students with a nurturing environment in which to learn, both in the classroom and research setting, and strive to make every student experience positive and successful.