Image Place holder

Tiffany Carson, PhD, MPH

Program: Health Outcomes and Behavior

View Lab Page

Google Scholar Profile


Dr. Carson's research focuses on cancer prevention and reducing racial disparities in obesity and cancer, primarily by helping individuals achieve healthier weights.  Using a bio-behavioral model, Dr. Carson's research program examines how race, behaviors (e.g. diet, stress) and the gut microbiota intersect to influence health outcomes.


    • Health Outcomes and Behavior
    • Gastrointestinal Oncology
    • Health Outcomes & Behavior Program

Education & Training


  • University of Alabama at Birmingham, PhD - Epidemiology
  • University of Alabama at Birmingham, MPH - Epidemiology


  • Center for Obesity Research, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences

Dr. Carson's research focuses on cancer prevention and reducing racial disparities in obesity and cancer, primarily by helping individuals achieve healthier weights.  Using a bio-behavioral model, Dr. Carson's research program examines how race, behaviors (e.g. diet, stress) and the gut microbiota intersect to influence health outcomes.


  • Little RB, Murillo AL, Van Der Pol WJ, Lefkowitz EJ, Morrow CD, Yi N, Carson TL. Diet Quality and the Gut Microbiota in Women Living in Alabama. Am J Prev Med. 2022 Jul.63(1 Suppl 1):S37-S46. Pubmedid: 35725139. Pmcid: PMC9219556.
  • Li J, Van Der Pol W, Eraslan M, McLain A, Cetin H, Cetin B, Morrow C, Carson T, Yarar-Fisher C. Comparison of the gut microbiome composition among individuals with acute or long-standing spinal cord injury vs. able-bodied controls. J Spinal Cord Med. 2022 Jan.45(1):91-99. Pubmedid: 32496944. Pmcid: PMC8890582.
  • Buro AW, Baskin M, Miller D, Ward T, West DS, Gore LR, Gwede CK, Epel E, Carson TL. Rationale and study protocol for a randomized controlled trial to determine the effectiveness of a culturally relevant, stress management enhanced behavioral weight loss intervention on weight loss outcomes of black women. BMC Public Health. 2022 Jan.22(1):193. Pubmedid: 35090433. Pmcid: PMC8795937.
  • Nolan TS, Ivankova N, Carson TL, Spaulding AM, Dunovan S, Davies S, Enah C, Meneses K. Life after breast cancer: 'Being' a young African American survivor. Ethn Health. 2022 Feb.27(2):247-274. Pubmedid: 31642349.
  • Carson TL, Cardel MI, Stanley TL, Grinspoon S, Hill JO, Ard J, Mayer-Davis E, Stanford FC. Racial and ethnic representation among a sample of nutrition- and obesity-focused professional organizations in the United States. Obesity (Silver Spring). 2022 Feb.30(2):292-296. Pubmedid: 34658155.
  • Tipre M, Carson TL. A Qualitative Assessment of Gender- and Race-Related Stress Among Black Women. Womens Health Rep (New Rochelle). 2022 Feb.3(1):222-227. Pubmedid: 35262060. Pmcid: PMC8896166.
  • Carson TL, Buro AW, Miller D, Peña A, Ard JD, Lampe JW, Yi N, Lefkowitz E, William VP, Morrow C, Wilson L, Barnes S, Demark-Wahnefried W. Rationale and study protocol for a randomized controlled feeding study to determine the structural- and functional-level effects of diet-specific interventions on the gut microbiota of non-Hispanic black and white adults. Contemp Clin Trials. 2022 Dec.123:106968. Pubmedid: 36265810.
  • Moumne O, Hampe ME, Montoya-Williams D, Carson TL, Neu J, Francois M, Rhoton-Vlasak A, Lemas DJ. Implications of the vaginal microbiome and potential restorative strategies on maternal health: a narrative review. J Perinat Med. 2021 May.49(4):402-411. Pubmedid: 33554571.
  • Smith KS, Frugé AD, van der Pol W, Caston NE, Morrow CD, Demark-Wahnefried W, Carson TL. Gut microbial differences in breast and prostate cancer cases from two randomised controlled trials compared to matched cancer-free controls. Benef Microbes. 2021 Jun.12(3):239-248. Pubmedid: 33789551. Pmcid: PMC8328038.
  • Brown JC, Carson TL, Thompson HJ, Agurs-Collins T. The Triple Health Threat of Diabetes, Obesity, and Cancer-Epidemiology, Disparities, Mechanisms, and Interventions. Obesity (Silver Spring). 2021 Jun.29(6):954-959. Pubmedid: 34029445. Pmcid: PMC8152945.
  • Molina K, Baskin ML, Long D, Carson TL. Psychological and behavioral pathways between perceived stress and weight change in a behavioral weight loss intervention. J Behav Med. 2021 Dec.44(6):822-832. Pubmedid: 34003418. Pmcid: PMC9105808.
  • Carson TL, Cardel MI, Stanley TL, Grinspoon S, Hill JO, Ard J, Mayer-Davis E, Stanford FC. Racial and ethnic representation among a sample of nutrition- and obesity-focused professional organizations in the United States. Am J Clin Nutr. 2021 Dec.114(6):1869-1872. Pubmedid: 34718383. Pmcid: PMC8634609.
  • Miller PL, Carson TL. Mechanisms and microbial influences on CTLA-4 and PD-1-based immunotherapy in the treatment of cancer: a narrative review. Gut Pathog. 2020 Sep.12:43. Pubmedid: 32944086. Pmcid: PMC7488430.
  • Kaiser KA, Carson TL, Dhurandhar EJ, Neumeier WH, Cardel MI. Biobehavioural approaches to prevention and treatment: A call for implementation science in obesity research. Obes Sci Pract. 2020 Feb.6(1):3-9. Pubmedid: 32128237. Pmcid: PMC7042105.
  • Little RB, Desmond R, Carson TL. Dietary intake and diet quality by weight category among a racially diverse sample of women in Birmingham, Alabama, USA. J Nutr Sci. 2020 Dec.9:e58. Pubmedid: 33354329. Pmcid: PMC7737174.
  • Xing CY, Doose M, Qin B, Lin Y, Carson TL, Plascak JJ, Demissie K, Hong CC, Bandera EV, Llanos AAM. Pre-diagnostic allostatic load and health-related quality of life in a cohort of Black breast cancer survivors. Breast Cancer Res Treat. 2020 Dec.184(3):901-914. Pubmedid: 32914357. Pmcid: PMC7657984.
  • Byrd DA, Carson TL, Williams F, Vogtmann E. Elucidating the role of the gastrointestinal microbiota in racial and ethnic health disparities. Genome Biol. 2020 Aug.21(1):192. Pubmedid: 32746938. Pmcid: PMC7397581.
  • Wang ML, Behrman P, Dulin A, Baskin ML, Buscemi J, Alcaraz KI, Goldstein CM, Carson TL, Shen M, Fitzgibbon M. Addressing inequities in COVID-19 morbidity and mortality: research and policy recommendations. Transl Behav Med. 2020 Aug.10(3):516-519. Pubmedid: 32542349. Pmcid: PMC7337775.
  • Montoya-Williams D, Lemas DJ, Spiryda L, Patel K, Carney OO, Neu J, Carson TL. The Neonatal Microbiome and Its Partial Role in Mediating the Association between Birth by Cesarean Section and Adverse Pediatric Outcomes. Neonatology. 2019 Sep.114(2):103-111. Pubmedid: 29788027. Pmcid: PMC6532636.
  • Kroeger EN, Carson TL, Baskin ML, Langaigne A, Schneider CR, Bertrand B, Herbey II, Harper LM, Biggio JR, Chandler-Laney PC. Reasons for Late-Night Eating and Willingness to Change:A Qualitative Study in Pregnant Black Women. J Nutr Educ Behav. 2019 May.51(5):598-607. Pubmedid: 30579893. Pmcid: PMC6511485.
  • Carson TL, Aguilera A, Brown SD, Peña J, Butler A, Dulin A, Jonassaint CR, Riley I, Vanderbom K, Molina KM, Cené CW. A Seat at the Table: Strategic Engagement in Service Activities for Early-Career Faculty From Underrepresented Groups in the Academy. Acad Med. 2019 Aug.94(8):1089-1093. Pubmedid: 30649021. Pmcid: PMC6626695.
  • Carson TL, Little RB, Townsend S. Preliminary feasibility for recruiting and retaining black and white females to provide fecal samples for longitudinal research. Gut Pathog. 2019 Aug.11:43. Pubmedid: 31462930. Pmcid: PMC6710875.
  • Johnson ER, Affuso O, Levitan EB, Carson TL, Baskin ML. Body image and dissatisfaction among rural Deep South African American women in a weight loss intervention. J Health Psychol. 2019 Aug.24(9):1167-1177. Pubmedid: 28810419.
  • Nolan TS, Ivankova N, Carson TL, Spaulding A, Davies S, Enah C, Meneses K. Perceptions of a Breast Cancer Survivorship Intervention: Pearls of Wisdom from Young African American Women. J Adolesc Young Adult Oncol. 2019 Apr.8(2):165-171. Pubmedid: 30407099.
  • Carson TL. Heavy Hunger-Managing Weight and Obesity in Black American Communities. Jama. 2019 10.322(16):1534-1536. Pubmedid: 31638656.
  • Carson TL, Wang F, Cui X, Jackson BE, Van Der Pol WJ, Lefkowitz EJ, Morrow C, Baskin ML. Associations Between Race, Perceived Psychological Stress, and the Gut Microbiota in a Sample of Generally Healthy Black and White Women: A Pilot Study on the Role of Race and Perceived Psychological Stress. Psychosom Med. 2018 Sep.80(7):640-648. Pubmedid: 29901485. Pmcid: PMC6113071.
  • Shikany JM, Carson TL, Hardy CM, Li Y, Sterling S, Hardy S, Walker CM, Baskin ML. Assessment of the nutrition environment in rural counties in the Deep South. J Nutr Sci. 2018 Oct.7:e27. Pubmedid: 30402218. Pmcid: PMC6218927.
  • Sterling S, Judd S, Bertrand B, Carson TL, Chandler-Laney P, Baskin ML. Dietary Patterns Among Overweight and Obese African-American Women Living in the Rural South. J Racial Ethn Health Disparities. 2018 Feb.5(1):141-150. Pubmedid: 28281179. Pmcid: PMC5591750.
  • Sterling SR, Bertrand B, Judd S, Carson TL, Chandler-Laney P, Baskin ML. Longitudinal Analysis of Nut-Inclusive Diets and Body Mass Index Among Overweight and Obese African American Women Living in Rural Alabama and Mississippi, 2011-2013. Prev Chronic Dis. 2017 Sep.14:E82. Pubmedid: 28934081. Pmcid: PMC5609494.
  • Carson TL, Jackson BE, Nolan TS, Williams A, Baskin ML. Lower depression scores associated with greater weight loss among rural black women in a behavioral weight loss program. Transl Behav Med. 2017 Jun.7(2):320-329. Pubmedid: 27909882. Pmcid: PMC5526808.
  • Ard JD, Carson TL, Shikany JM, Li Y, Hardy CM, Robinson JC, Williams AG, Baskin ML. Weight loss and improved metabolic outcomes amongst rural African American women in the Deep South: six-month outcomes from a community-based randomized trial. J Intern Med. 2017 Jul.282(1):102-113. Pubmedid: 28514081. Pmcid: PMC6136898.
  • Montoya-Williams D, Lemas DJ, Spiryda L, Patel K, Neu J, Carson TL. What Are Optimal Cesarean Section Rates in the U.S. and How Do We Get There? A Review of Evidence-Based Recommendations and Interventions. J Womens Health (Larchmt). 2017 Dec.26(12):1285-1291. Pubmedid: 28825512. Pmcid: PMC7643764.
  • Lampard AM, Nishi A, Baskin ML, Carson TL, Davison KK. The Activity Support Scale for Multiple Groups (ACTS-MG): Child-reported Physical Activity Parenting in African American and Non-Hispanic White Families. Behav Med. 2016 Oct.42(2):112-119. Pubmedid: 25350515. Pmcid: PMC4412752.
  • Carson TL, Desmond R, Hardy S, Townsend S, Ard JD, Meneses K, Partridge EE, Baskin ML. A study of the relationship between food group recommendations and perceived stress: findings from black women in the Deep South. J Obes. 2015 Sep.2015:203164. Pubmedid: 25821595. Pmcid: PMC4364113.
  • Carson TL, Hidalgo B, Ard JD, Affuso O. Dietary interventions and quality of life: a systematic review of the literature. J Nutr Educ Behav. 2014 Sep.46(2):90-101. Pubmedid: 24183706. Pmcid: PMC3982833.
  • Robinson JC, Carson TL, Johnson ER, Hardy CM, Shikany JM, Green E, Willis LM, Marron JV, Li Y, Lee CH, Baskin ML. Assessing environmental support for better health: active living opportunity audits in rural communities in the southern United States. Prev Med. 2014 Sep.66:28-33. Pubmedid: 24954744. Pmcid: PMC4138048.
  • Wingo BC, Carson TL, Ard J. Differences in weight loss and health outcomes among African Americans and whites in multicentre trials. Obes Rev. 2014 Oct.15 Suppl 4:46-61. Pubmedid: 25196406.
  • Carson TL, Hardy CM, Greene E, Carter PL, James G, Partridge EE, Baskin ML. Considerations for bio-specimen collection among black women residing in the rural Deep South participating in a cancer prevention study. J Community Genet. 2014 Jul.5(3):257-263. Pubmedid: 24338206. Pmcid: PMC4059851.
  • Affuso O, Kaiser KA, Carson TL, Ingram KH, Schwiers M, Robertson H, Abbas F, Allison DB. Association of run-in periods with weight loss in obesity randomized controlled trials. Obes Rev. 2014 Jan.15(1):68-73. Pubmedid: 24118736. Pmcid: PMC3885242.
  • Johnson ER, Carson TL, Affuso O, Hardy CM, Baskin ML. Relationship between social support and body mass index among overweight and obese African American women in the rural deep South, 2011-2013. Prev Chronic Dis. 2014 Dec.11:E224. Pubmedid: 25539128. Pmcid: PMC4279865.
  • Ard JD, Zunker C, Qu H, Cox T, Wingo B, Jefferson W, Shewchuk R. Cultural perceptions of weight in African American and Caucasian women. Am J Health Behav. 2013 Jan.37(1):3-13. Pubmedid: 22943096. Pmcid: PMC4106677.
  • Cox TL, Krukowski R, Love SJ, Eddings K, DiCarlo M, Chang JY, Prewitt TE, West DS. Stress management-augmented behavioral weight loss intervention for African American women: a pilot, randomized controlled trial. Health Educ Behav. 2013 Feb.40(1):78-87. Pubmedid: 22505570.
  • Carson TL, Eddings KE, Krukowski RA, Love SJ, Harvey-Berino JR, West DS. Examining social influence on participation and outcomes among a network of behavioral weight-loss intervention enrollees. J Obes. 2013 Dec.2013:480630. Pubmedid: 23840944. Pmcid: PMC3690255.
  • Cox TL, Ard JD, Beasley TM, Fernandez JR, Howard VJ, Kolotkin RL, Crosby RD, Affuso O. Examining the Association Between Body Mass Index and Weight Related Quality of Life in Black and White Women. Appl Res Qual Life. 2012 Sep.7(3):309-322. Pubmedid: 28286583. Pmcid: PMC5344196.
  • Cox TL, Ard JD, Beasley TM, Fernandez JR, Howard VJ, Affuso O. Body image as a mediator of the relationship between body mass index and weight-related quality of life in black women. J Womens Health (Larchmt). 2011 Oct.20(10):1573-1578. Pubmedid: 21815779. Pmcid: PMC3186445.
  • Davison KK, Li K, Baskin ML, Cox T, Affuso O. Measuring parental support for children's physical activity in white and African American parents: the Activity Support Scale for Multiple Groups (ACTS-MG). Prev Med. 2011 Jan.52(1):39-43. Pubmedid: 21111755. Pmcid: PMC3022380.
  • Affuso O, Cox TL, Durant NH, Allison DB. Attitudes and beliefs associated with leisure-time physical activity among African American adults. Ethnic Dis. 2011 Dec.21(1):63-67. Pubmedid: 21462732. Pmcid: PMC3074974.
  • Ard JD, Cox TL, Zunker C, Wingo BC, Jefferson WK, Brakhage C. A study of a culturally enhanced EatRight dietary intervention in a predominately African American workplace. J Public Health Manag Pract. 2010 Nov.16(6):E1-E8. Pubmedid: 20885173. Pmcid: PMC3652327.
  • Ard JD, Perumean-Chaney S, Desmond R, Sutton B, Cox TL, Butsch WS, Allison DB, Franklin F, Baskin ML. Fruit and vegetable pricing by demographic factors in the Birmingham, Alabama, metropolitan area, 2004-2005. Prev Chronic Dis. 2010 Jul.7(4):A78. Pubmedid: 20550836. Pmcid: PMC2901576.
  • Zunker C, Cox TL, Wingo BC, Knight B, Jefferson WK, Ard JD. Using formative research to develop a worksite health promotion program for African American women. Women Health. 2008 Oct.48(2):189-207. Pubmedid: 19042216.
  • Cox TL, Malpede CZ, Desmond RA, Faulk LE, Myer RA, Henson CS, Heimburger DC, Ard JD. Physical activity patterns during weight maintenance following a low-energy density dietary intervention. Obesity (Silver Spring). 2007 May.15(5):1226-1232. Pubmedid: 17495199.


  • Title: Improving Weight Loss Outcomes of Black Women Using a Culturally Relevant, Stress Management Enhanced Behavioral Weight Loss Intervention
    Sponsor: Nat Institutes of Health
    PI: Carson, T.
  • Title: Determining the Structural- and Functional-Level Effects of Diet-Specific Interventions on the Gut Microbiota of a Diverse Sample of Southern United States Adults
    Sponsor: Nat Institutes of Health
    PI: Carson, T.