Nancy I. Williams

 Nancy Williams

Professor of Kinesiology and Physiology, and Head of Department, Kinesiology.

Contact Information

276 Recreation Building
The Pennsylvania State University
University Park PA 16802


(fax) 814-865-1275


Sc.D., 1992, Applied Physiology, Boston University

Research Interests

Exercise physiology, women’s health and exercise, effects of exercise and diet on the menstrual cycle, gastrointestinal peptides and food intake, neuroendocrinology, metabolism, skeletal physiology


  • Women’s health and exercise with an emphasis on the female athlete triad
  • Interactions between energy balance and menstrual cycle physiology in exercising women
  • Effects of food intake and exercise on gut peptides and metabolic signals
  • Effects of psychosocial stressors on reproductive function 

Selected Publications

Williams NI, Leidy HJ, Hill BR, Lieberman JL, Legro RS, De Souza MJ. Magnitude of daily energy deficit predicts frequency but not severity of menstrual disturbances associated with exercise and caloric restriction. Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab. 2015 Jan 1;308(1):E29-39

Reed JL, De Souza MJ, Mallinson RJ, Scheid JL, Williams NI. Energy availability discriminates clinical menstrual status in exercising women.J Int Soc Sports Nutr. 2015 Feb 19;12:11

De Souza MJ, Nattiv A, Joy E, Misra M. Williams NI, Mallinson RJ, Gibbs JC, Olmsted M, Goolsby M, Matheson G. 2014 Female Athlete Triad Coalition Consensus Statement on Treatment and Return to Play of the female athlete triad: 1st International Conference held in San Francisco, CA May 2012 and 2nd International Conference held in Indianapolis, IN, May 2013. Br J Sports Med. 2014 Feb; 48(4): 289

Hill BR, De Souza MJ, Roe L, Rolls B, Williams, NI. Ghrelin and PYY Increase with Weight Loss During a 12-month Intervention to Reduce Dietary Energy Density. Peptides. 2013 Nov;49:138-44

Scheid JL, De Souza MJ, Hill B, Leidy HJ, Williams NI. Decreased luteinizing hormone pulse frequency is associated with elevated twenty-four-hour ghrelin after calorie restriction and exercise training in non-obese women Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab. 2013 Jan 1;304(1):E109-16

Koehler K, De Souza MJ, Williams NI. Less-than-expected weight loss in normal-weight women undergoing caloric restriction and exercise is accompanied by preservation of fat-free mass and metabolic adaptations. Eur J Clin Nutr. 2016 Oct 26.

Strategic Themes

  • Domains of Health and Behavior
  • Populations of Special Interest