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Sarah Sauchelli Toran

Senior Research Associate, University of Bristol

With a background in health and experimental psychology, in 2016 I completed a PhD in Medicine and Health Sciences at the University of Barcelona funded by the Bellvitge Biomedial Research Institute. My interdisciplinary research focused on gaining further insight into the pathophysiology of sleep and physical activity in extreme weight conditions, from Anorexia Nervosa to Obesity. Based at the NIHR Bristol Biomedical Research Centre (Nutrition Theme), I now explore novel approaches to help people with type 2 diabetes mellitus manage their weight and achieve metabolic control. This involves working closely with patients and healthcare professionals to identify key barriers to weight management, and identifying avenues towards innovative solutions grounded on scientific evidence.

I co-lead a GW4 research collaborative looking at the opinions of the UK general public on the application of novel technologies in healthcare, and I manage the development of a new weight maintenance intervention for people with type 2 diabetes.

More recently I have been working with Diabetes UK to identify the support needs of people with diabetes during the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic, and to enable the digitalisation of peer support groups as a form of continuous and accessible mutual support and informal advice.

My research interests are energy balance, drivers underlying adherence to physical activity and dietary recommendations, the link between physical activity and food intake, and digital technologies to facilitate health-related behaviour change.