Air Force Optimal Nutrition and Peak Performance Study

Matt Kuchan, PhD,  Research Fellow and discovery scientist in Research and Development, the global brain health platform and science lead for Abbott’s partnership with the Center for Nutrition Learning and Memory at the University of Illinois discusses a new study published in “Scientific Reports” (19 Oct 2020) that confirms that proper nutrition not only fuels our bodies and improves fitness, but also provides a mental edge. Researchers from the U.S. Air Force, University of Illinois and Abbott found that airmen who consumed a high-protein nutrition drink with specific ingredients to target muscle and cognitive function were able to improve working memory and reaction time, increase muscle mass, and lower resting heart rate. 

Matt Kuchan, PhD – Nutrition and Brain Health, Clinical Research. Matt Kuchan is a discovery scientist and leads scientific discovery and research on the impact of nutrition on cognition and memory.Matt oversees a global team of cognition experts who are studying nutritional compounds and their benefits to discover new uses to develop nutritional therapies that address health needs in children and adults. His research has focused on the role of lutein and vitamin E in brain development in babies and in cognitive decline in older adults. Matt joined Abbott in 1993 and has held various roles in research and development in pediatric and adult nutrition. He assumed the Global Cognition Platform Lead and Science Lead in 2011.Matt earned his bachelor’s degree in Biology from Saint Louis University, a master’s degree in Human Physiology from Illinois State University and his PhD in Nutritional Science from the University of Illinois. He completed his post doctorate in Chemical Engineering at the Pennsylvania State University.

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