After earning her doctoral degree from Long Island University’s Post Campus and completing an internship at The Karen Horney Clinic, Dr. Conason completed a postdoctoral fellowship at the New York Obesity Nutrition Research Center at St. Luke’s-Roosevelt Hospital (now Mount Sinai Morningside) in affiliation with Columbia University. In this capacity, Dr. Conason worked closely with the Center for Bariatric Surgery at St. Luke’s-Roosevelt Hospital as part of the treatment team conducting preoperative psychological evaluations, designing treatment plans, and leading support groups.
While she initially entered into this position with the intention of gleaning knowledge to help others lose weight, she shifted to a weight-inclusive, Health At Every Size stance after being presented with a great deal of evidence that intentional weight loss doesn’t work and is harmful.
Dr. Conaon’s research focused on psychological outcomes following bariatric weight loss surgery (WLS). Her groundbreaking dissertation research on substance use following WLS was one of the first studies to document an increased risk of alcohol use following Roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery; now a widely-recognized phenomenon.
Her research was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) Surgery and has been cited hundreds of times in peer reviewed articles.