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The Department of Human Nutrition at the University of Otago was the first University Nutrition programme to be established in New Zealand.

We have a long history of making significant contributions to the discipline of nutrition, both nationally and internationally and have strong links with Universities from Australia, the United Kingdom, Europe and, North America.

Our team also have strong interdisciplinary collaborations with other University Departments including the School of Physical Education, Sports and Exercise Science and the Departments of Food Science, Medicine, Anatomy, Women's and Children's Health and Preventive and Social Medicine.

Research Staff

Associate Professor Katherine Black

Elite sporting performance, Nutrition and Health.

Professor Rachel Brown

Nuts and health, energy and lipid metabolism, Sports Nutrition.

Dr Edmond Fehoko

Pacific and indigenous interventions the promote health and positive wellbeing.  Qualitative and pacific research methods.

Professor Anne-Louise Heath

Iron Nutrition, infant nutrition and the use of food-based strategies to improve nutritional status and health.

Professor Lisa Houghton

Assessment and health consequences of micronutrient deficiencies in “at risk” population groups.

Dr Meredith Peddie

The impact of nutrition, sedentary behavior and physical activity on cardiometabolic risk.

Professor Nicole Roy

Nutrition and health, host-microbiome interactions, gastrointestinal physiology and gut-brain communication.
Prof Roy also leads the High-value nutrition science Challenge Priority Research Programme, Healthy Digestion: Improving Gastrointestinal function and comfort.

Professor Sheila Skeaff

Trace element status of the population with a particular focus on iodine and fluoride, environmental and food literacy, food waste.

Dr Claire Smith

Household food insecurity, food costs and dietary assessment.
Dr Smith is also responsible for running the Food Cost Survey.

Dr Sara Styles

Development and evaluation of behaviour change interventions to promote health.

Emeritus Professors

Emeritus Professor Rosalind Gibson

Assessment and Functional health outcomes of micronutrient deficiencies in at risk population groups in low-income countries.

Emeritus Professor Murray Skeaff

Emeritus Professor Christine Thomson

Selenium and iodine in human nutrition.

You can read more about our current PhD students and their research.

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