Accessibility Skip to Global Navigation Skip to Local Navigation Skip to Content Skip to Search Skip to Site Map Menu

Professor Sheila Skeaff

MSc(Guelph) PhD (Otago)

Sheila Skeaff Thumb 2016Email sheila.skeaff@otago.ac.nz

Professor Skeaff conducts research on the trace element status of the population, with a particular focus on iodine and fluoride. Professor Skeaff also undertakes research on the environmental literacy of university students and food literacy in children.   She also conducts research on sustainable foods and diets, with a particular focus on food waste.

Professor Skeaff has an MSc in Nutritional Biochemistry from the University of Guelph (Canada) and a PhD in Human Nutrition from the University of Otago. She conducts research on the iodine status of sub-groups of the population, including children and pregnant women. Professor Skeaff is also interested in elucidating the consequences of mild iodine deficiency on normal growth and development, including cognition. She was a member of a multi-disciplinary group that measures the environmental literacy of students at the University of Otago. She also conducts research on sustainable foods and diets. Her team developed and validated an online questionnaire to measure food literacy in children, which is currently being used to evaluate the impact of school gardens on food literacy in New Zealand children.

Professor Skeaff is a steering committee member of Food Waste Innovation, a University of Otago Research Theme which measures food waste, develops reduction strategies, applies innovative technology, and works to modify producer and consumer behaviour.

Professor Skeaff served as the President of the Nutrition Society of New Zealand for six years and sits on the trans-Tasman Expert Working Group for Iodine that is reviewing the Australian/New Zealand Nutrient Reference Values for Iodine. She also plays a key role in the governance of the Oceania Nutrition Leadership Program, serving as Deputy Chair. She is on the Editorial Board of the journal Maternal and Child Nutrition. In 2018 she gained national recognition with an Ako Aotearoa Tertiary Teaching Excellence Award.

Teaching

Professor Skeaff coordinates and teaches the paper HUNT141: Understanding Human Nutrition.

She is also the Human Nutrition Postgraduate Coordinator and oversees the department's MSc and PhD programmes. As part of this role, she coordinates and teaches HUNT455, HUNT490, and HUNT495.

Current postgraduate students

PhD

Nan Xin Wang (with R McLean). Quantifying sodium intake from discretionary salt in the New Zealand diet.

Jessica O'Connor (with M Mirosa and P Bremer). Towards a circular bioeconomy: food loss, waste and opportunities in New Zealand beef and dairy production.

Grace Clare (with M Mirosa and P Bremer). The social return on investment of food rescue organisations in New Zealand.

Master of Science

Stephanie Dike (with L Moata'ane). Fluoride in Vanuatu: too much or too little?

Madeleine Rowan (with A-L Heath and M Mirosa). The impact of environmental attitudes of parents on food choices and behaviours during complementary feeding.

Emad Alsayed (with B Venn). The proportion of energy derived from plant-foods in the diets of adolescent girls who identify as omnivores or vegetarians.

Margaret Thorsen (with M Mirosa). Food waste for New Zealand fruit and vegetable growers.

Master of Dietetics

Kendall Airey and Abigail McPhail. Attitudes and willingness of university students to reduce meat and replace with plant-based proteins.

Yue Shin Ong (with M Peddie and J Haszard). Iodine intakes in adolescent girls and boys enrolled in SuNDiAL.

Honours

Jie Yu Ng. An evaluation of food literacy in children before and after the Garden-to-Table programme.

Recent Graduates

PhD

Pouya Saeedi (with P Skidmore and K Black). The Physical activity, Energy, Diet And Lifestyle (PEDALS) study. (2017)

Zheng Feei Ma (with B Venn). Thyroglobulin as an index of mild iodine deficiency in adults. (2016)

Master of Health Science

Carolyn Hamer (with M Skeaff). Food Literacy in Year 12 and 13 High School students. (2019)

Master of Science

Francesca Goodman-Smith (with M Mirosa). Food waste and nutritional loss at the supermarket. (2018)

Lara Ware (with MSkeaff). Food Literacy in New Zealand children. (2018)

Harriet Harrex and Brittany Davison (with P Skidmore and K Black). The Physical activity, Energy, Diet And Lifestyle (PEDALS) study. (2016)

Celine Evans. Iodine status of pregnant NZ women post-fortification. (2015)

Master of Dietetics

Kathy Xu, Mickey Yuan, Molly Peters, Aysu Shahin (with M Peddie and J Haszard). Iodine and fluoride intakes in adolescent boys enrolled in SuNDiAL. (2021)

Emily Goodwin and Yue Shin Ong (with M Peddie and J Haszard). Iodine intakes in adolescent girls enrolled in SuNDiAL.Isabel Carlisle and Amy McLachlan (with M Skeaff). Nutrition and Health: Children's knowledge and beliefs. (2020)

Tanya Rogers and Cherry Lo (with B Drummond). Fluoride intakes children living in fluoridated and non-fluoridated areas of New Zealand. (2019)

Chontelle Watts and Caitlin Davenport (with B Drummond). Fluoride intakes in New Zealand children: a pilot study. (2018)

Nicola Davis, Kristina Russell, Daisy Power (with M Skeaff). Food literacy in New Zealand children. (2017)

Alex Govan (with M Skeaff). Validation of a food skills questionnaire in the kitchen. (2017)

Lauren Sharp and Ellyn Robertson (with R McLean). The contribution of discretionary salt to the iodine and sodium intakes of adults. (2017)

Emma Jones, Briar Davies, Rochelle Hawkins, and Eva Meiklejohn (with R McLean). Iodine status of New Zealand children post-fortication of bread with iodised salt. (2016)

Laura Conway. The nutritional status of patients undergoing haemopoietic stem cell transplantation. (2016)

Teresa O'Sullivan. Development and validation of a tool to assess food literacy in school children. (2015)

Lucy Burrows. A pilot study of the nutrition status of patients undergoing haemopoietic stem cell transplantation. (2015)

Peter Heald. Impact of mandatory fortification on the iodine status of Dunedin adults. (2015)

Claire Cannon (with Chris Rosin). Protein-rich foods in the NZ diet: sustainable options. (2014)

^ Top of page

Publications

Jin, Y., Coad, J., Zhou, S. J., Skeaff, S., Ramilan, T., & Brough, L. (2021). Prevalence of thyroid dysfunction in postpartum women with suboptimal iodine and selenium and adequate iron status. Clinical Endocrinology. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1111/cen.14502

Beckford, K., Grimes, C. A., Margerison, C., Riddell, L. J., Skeaff, S. A., & Nowson, C. (2021). Food sources of iodine in schoolchildren and relationship with 24-hour urinary iodine excretion in Victoria, Australia. British Journal of Nutrition. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1017/s0007114521001410

Jin, Y., Coad, J., Skeaff, S., Zhou, S. J., & Brough, L. (2021). Iodine status of postpartum women and their infants aged 3, 6 and 12 months: Mother and Infant Nutrition Investigation (MINI). British Journal of Nutrition. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1017/s000711452100129x

Beckford, K., Grimes, C. A., Margerison, C., Riddell, L. J., Skeaff, S. A., West, M. L., & Nowson, C. A. (2021). Reply to: A systematic review and meta-analysis of 24-h urinary output of children and adolescents: Impact on the assessment of iodine status using urinary biomarkers: Don’t forget creatinine [Letter to the editor]. European Journal of Nutrition. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1007/s00394-020-02468-x

Jin, Y., Coad, J., Zhou, S. J., Skeaff, S., Benn, C., & Brough, L. (2021). Use of iodine supplements by breastfeeding mothers Is associated with better maternal and infant iodine status. Biological Trace Element Research, 199, 2893-2903. doi: 10.1007/s12011-020-02438-8

Ma, Z. F., & Skeaff, S. A. (2017). Assessment of population iodine status. In E. N. Pearce (Ed.), Iodine deficiency disorders and their elimination. (pp. 15-28). Cham, Switzerland: Springer. doi: 10.1007/978-3-319-49505-7_2

Chapter in Book - Research

Skeaff, S., & Thomson, C. D. (2017). Trace elements 10.3: Iodine. In J. Mann & A. S. Truswell (Eds.), Essentials of human nutrition. (5th ed.) (pp. 172-178). Oxford University Press. [Contribution].

Chapter in Book - Research

Menon, K., & Skeaff, S. (2016). Iodine: Iodine deficiency disorders (IDD). In B. Caballero, P. M. Finglas & F. Toldrá (Eds.), Encyclopedia of food and health. (pp. 437-443). Oxford: Academic Press. doi: 10.1016/B978-0-12-384947-2.00399-8

Chapter in Book - Research

Skeaff, S. A., & Zhou, S. J. (2016). Iodine and brain development. In V. H. Moran & N. M. Lowe (Eds.), Nutrition and the developing brain. (pp. 169-188). Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press.

Chapter in Book - Research

Shephard, K., Harraway, J., Lovelock, B., Skeaff, S., Slooten, L., Strack, M., & Jowett, T. (2012). Monitoring changes in the sustainability attributes of higher education students in a New Zealand university. In W. L. Filho (Ed.), Sustainable development at universities: New horizons. (pp. 117-126). Frankfurt, Germany: Peter Lang.

Chapter in Book - Research

Skeaff, S., & Thomson, C. D. (2012). Trace elements 11.3: Iodine. In J. Mann & A. S. Truswell (Eds.), Essentials of human nutrition. (4th ed.) (pp. 177-184). Oxford University Press. [Contribution].

Chapter in Book - Research

Skeaff, S. A. (2011). Iodine and cognitive development. In D. Benton (Ed.), Lifetime nutritional influences on cognition, behaviour and psychiatric illness. (pp. 109-128). Cambridge, UK: Woodhead.

Chapter in Book - Research

Skeaff, S. A. (2009). Iodine nutrition in pregnancy: Meeting iodine requirements in the diets of pregnant women. In V. R. Preedy, G. N. Burrow & R. Watson (Eds.), Comprehensive handbook of iodine: Nutritional, biochemical, pathological and therapeutic aspects. (pp. 1259-1264). Amsterdam: Academic Press.

Chapter in Book - Research

Thomson, C. D., & Skeaff, S. A. (2009). Iodine status and deficiency disorders in New Zealand. In V. R. Preedy, G. N. Burrow & R. Watson (Eds.), Comprehensive handbook of iodine: Nutritional, biochemical, pathological and therapeutic aspects. (pp. 1251-1258). Amsterdam: Academic Press.

Chapter in Book - Research

Brough, L., & Skeaff, S. (2020). Iodine status in New Zealand. In P. A. C. Richards (Ed.), Iodophor: Tamed iodine: The status of iodine in Tasmania. Gatekeeper Press.

Chapter in Book - Other

Beckford, K., Grimes, C. A., Margerison, C., Riddell, L. J., Skeaff, S. A., & Nowson, C. (2021). Food sources of iodine in schoolchildren and relationship with 24-hour urinary iodine excretion in Victoria, Australia. British Journal of Nutrition. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1017/s0007114521001410

Journal - Research Article

Jin, Y., Coad, J., Skeaff, S., Zhou, S. J., & Brough, L. (2021). Iodine status of postpartum women and their infants aged 3, 6 and 12 months: Mother and Infant Nutrition Investigation (MINI). British Journal of Nutrition. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1017/s000711452100129x

Journal - Research Article

Jin, Y., Coad, J., Zhou, S. J., Skeaff, S., Benn, C., & Brough, L. (2021). Use of iodine supplements by breastfeeding mothers Is associated with better maternal and infant iodine status. Biological Trace Element Research, 199, 2893-2903. doi: 10.1007/s12011-020-02438-8

Journal - Research Article

Jin, Y., Coad, J., Zhou, S. J., Skeaff, S., Ramilan, T., & Brough, L. (2021). Prevalence of thyroid dysfunction in postpartum women with suboptimal iodine and selenium and adequate iron status. Clinical Endocrinology. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1111/cen.14502

Journal - Research Article

Beckford, K., Grimes, C. A., Margerison, C., Riddell, L. J., Skeaff, S. A., West, M. L., & Nowson, C. A. (2020). A systematic review and meta-analysis of 24-h urinary output of children and adolescents: Impact on the assessment of iodine status using urinary biomarkers. European Journal of Nutrition, 59, 3113-3131. doi: 10.1007/s00394-019-02151-w

Journal - Research Article

Goodman-Smith, F., Mirosa, M., & Skeaff, S. (2020). A mixed-methods study of retail food waste in New Zealand. Food Policy, 92, 101845. doi: 10.1016/j.foodpol.2020.101845

Journal - Research Article

Jin, Y., Luo, X., Ma, Z. F., Dong, Z., Carciofo, R., Li, X., & Skeaff, S. (2020). Adequate iodine intake among young adults in Jiangsu Province, China despite a medium iodine knowledge score. European Journal of Investigation in Health, Psychology & Education, 10(1), 554-563. doi: 10.3390/ejihpe10010040

Journal - Research Article

Saeedi, P., Haszard, J., Stoner, L., Skeaff, S., Black, K. E., Davison, B., … Meredith-Jones, K., Quigg, R., … Skidmore, P. M. L. (2020). Relationships between dietary patterns and indices of arterial stiffness and central arterial wave reflection in 9–11-year-old children. Children, 7(6), 66. doi: 10.3390/children7060066

Journal - Research Article

Sam, C. H. Y., Skidmore, P., Skeaff, S., Parackal, S., Wall, C., & Bradbury, K. E. (2020). Relative validity and reproductivity of a short food frequency questionnaire to assess nutrient intakes of New Zealand adults. Nutrients, 12(3), 619. doi: 10.3390/nu12030619

Journal - Research Article

Sherriff, J., Hine, T., Begley, A., Zhao, Y., Black, L., Dunlop, E., & Skeaff, S. (2020). Iodine-containing food practices of Western Australian pregnant women and ethnicity: An observational study. Nutrition & Dietetics, 77, 344-350. doi: 10.1111/1747-0080.12585

Journal - Research Article

Stoner, L., Higgins, S., Black, K., Boggess, K., Meyer, M. L., Chou, A., Galland, B., Haszard, J. J., Meredith-Jones, K., … Skeaff, S., & Skidmore, P. M. L. (2020). Short sleep duration is associated with central arterial stiffness in children independent of other lifestyle behaviors. Journal of Science in Sport & Exercise, 2, 236-245. doi: 10.1007/s42978-020-00062-5

Journal - Research Article

Szymlek-Gay, E. A., Gray, A. R., Heath, A.-L. M., Ferguson, E. L., Edwards, T., & Skeaff, S. A. (2020). Iodine-fortified toddler milk improves dietary iodine intakes and iodine status in toddlers: A randomised controlled trial. European Journal of Nutrition, 59, 909-919. doi: 10.1007/s00394-019-01950-5

Journal - Research Article

Brown, K., Connelly, S., Lovelock, B., Mainvil, L., Mather, D., Roberts, H., Skeaff, S., & Shephard, K. (2019). Do we teach our students to share and to care? Research in Post-Compulsory Education, 24(4), 462-481. doi: 10.1080/13596748.2019.1654693

Journal - Research Article

Peniamina, R., Skeaff, S., Haszard, J. J., & McLean, R. (2019). Comparison of 24-h diet records, 24-h urine, and duplicate diets for estimating dietary intakes of potassium, sodium, and iodine in children. Nutrients, 11(12), 2927. doi: 10.3390/nu11122927

Journal - Research Article

Strack, M., Shephard, K., Jowett, T., Mogford, S., Skeaff, S., & Mirosa, M. (2019). Monitoring surveying students' environmental attitudes as they experience higher education in New Zealand. Survey Review, 51(366), 257-264. doi: 10.1080/00396265.2017.1399526

Journal - Research Article

Zhou, S. J., Condo, D., Ryan, P., Skeaff, S. A., Howell, S., Anderson, P. J., … Makrides, M. (2019). Association between maternal iodine intake in pregnancy and childhood neurodevelopment at age 18 months. American Journal of Epidemiology, 188(2), 332-338. doi: 10.1093/aje/kwy225

Journal - Research Article

Harrex, H. A. L., Skeaff, S. A., Black, K. E., Davison, B. K., Haszard, J. J., Meredith-Jones, K., Quigg, R., Saeedi, P., … Skidmore, P. M. L. (2018). Sleep timing is associated with diet and physical activity levels in 9-11-year-old children from Dunedin, New Zealand: The PEDALS study. Journal of Sleep Research, 27(4), e12634. doi: 10.1111/jsr.12634

Journal - Research Article

Hine, T., Zhao, Y., Begley, A., Skeaff, S., & Sherriff, J. (2018). Iodine-containing supplement use by pregnant women attending antenatal clinics in Western Australia. Australian & New Zealand Journal of Obstetrics & Gynaecology, 58(6), 636-642. doi: 10.1111/ajo.12785

Journal - Research Article

Innes, S., Shephard, K., Furnari, M., Harraway, J., Jowett, T., Lovelock, B., Strack, M., & Skeaff, S. (2018). Greening the curriculum to foster environmental literacy in tertiary students studying human nutrition. Journal of Hunger & Environmental Nutrition, 13(2), 192-204. doi: 10.1080/19320248.2016.1255693

Journal - Research Article

Ma, Z. F., Venn, B. J., Manning, P. J., Cameron, C. M., & Skeaff, S. A. (2018). The sensitivity and specificity of thyroglobulin concentration using repeated measures of urinary iodine excretion. European Journal of Nutrition, 57(4), 1313-1320. doi: 10.1007/s00394-017-1410-6

Journal - Research Article

Saeedi, P., Black, K. E., Haszard, J. J., Skeaff, S., Stoner, L., Davidson, B., Harrex, H. A. L., Meredith-Jones, K., Quigg, R., … Skidmore, P. M. L. (2018). Dietary patterns, cardiorespiratory and muscular fitness in 9-11-year-old children from Dunedin, New Zealand. Nutrients, 10, 887. doi: 10.3390/nu10070887

Journal - Research Article

Beckford, K., Grimes, C. A., Margerison, C., Riddell, L. J., Skeaff, S. A., & Nowson, C. A. (2017). Iodine intakes of Victorian schoolchildren measured using 24-h urinary iodine excretion. Nutrients, 9(9), 961. doi: 10.3390/nu9090961

Journal - Research Article

Condo, D., Huyhn, D., Anderson, A. J., Skeaff, S., Ryan, P., Makrides, M., … Zhou, S. J. (2017). Iodine status of pregnant women in South Australia after mandatory iodine fortification of bread and the recommendation for iodine supplementation. Maternal & Child Nutrition, 13(4), e12410. doi: 10.1111/mcn.12410

Journal - Research Article

Davison, B., Saeedi, P., Black, K., Harrex, H., Haszard, J., Meredith-Jones, K., Quigg, R., Skeaff, S., … Skidmore, P. (2017). The association between parent diet quality and child dietary patterns in nine- to eleven-year-old children from Dunedin, New Zealand. Nutrients, 9(5), 483. doi: 10.3390/nu9050483

Journal - Research Article

Huynh, D., Condo, D., Gibson, R., Muhlhausler, B., Ryan, P., Skeaff, S., … Zhou, S. J. (2017). Iodine status of postpartum women and their infants in Australia after the introduction of mandatory iodine fortification. British Journal of Nutrition, 117(12), 1656-1662. doi: 10.1017/S0007114517001775

Journal - Research Article

Edmonds, J. C., McLean, R. M., Williams, S. M., & Skeaff, S. A. (2016). Urinary iodine concentration of New Zealand adults improves with mandatory fortification of bread with iodised salt but not to predicted levels. European Journal of Nutrition, 55(3), 1201-1212. doi: 10.1007/s00394-015-0933-y

Journal - Research Article

Jones, E., McLean, R., Davies, B., Hawkins, R., Meiklejohn, E., Ma, Z. F., & Skeaff, S. (2016). Adequate iodine status in New Zealand school children post-fortification of bread with iodised salt. Nutrients, 8(5), 298. doi: 10.3390/nu8050298

Journal - Research Article

Jorgensen, A., O'Leary, P., James, I., Skeaff, S., & Sherriff, J. (2016). Assessment of breast milk iodine concentrations in lactating women in Western Australia. Nutrients, 8(11), 699. doi: 10.3390/nu8110699

Journal - Research Article

Ma, Z. F., Venn, B. J., Manning, P. J., Cameron, C. M., & Skeaff, S. A. (2016). Iodine supplementation of mildly iodine-deficient adults lowers thyroglobulin: A randomized controlled trial. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, 101(4), 1737-1744. doi: 10.1210/jc.2015-3591

Journal - Research Article

Menon, K. C., Ferguson, E. L., Thomson, C. D., Gray, A. R., Zodpey, S., Saraf, A., … Skeaff, S. A. (2016). Effects of anemia at different stages of gestation on infant outcomes. Nutrition, 32(1), 61-65. doi: 10.1016/j.nut.2015.07.009

Journal - Research Article

Redman, K., Ruffman, T., Fitzgerald, P., & Skeaff, S. (2016). Iodine deficiency and the brain: Effects and mechanisms. Critical Reviews in Food Science & Nutrition, 56(16), 2695-2713. doi: 10.1080/10408398.2014.922042

Journal - Research Article

Ruffman, T., Zhang, J., Taumoepeau, M., & Skeaff, S. (2016). Your way to a better theory of mind: A healthy diet relates to better faux pas recognition in older adults. Experimental Aging Research, 42(3), 279-288. doi: 10.1080/0361073x.2016.1156974

Journal - Research Article

Saeedi, P., Skeaff, S. A., Wong, J. E., & Skidmore, P. M. L. (2016). Reproducibility and relative validity of a short food frequency questionnaire in 9-10 year-old Children. Nutrients, 8(5), 271. doi: 10.3390/nu8050271

Journal - Research Article

Condo, D., Makrides, M., Skeaff, S., & Zhou, S. J. (2015). Development and validation of an iodine-specific FFQ to estimate iodine intake in Australian pregnant women. British Journal of Nutrition, 113(6), 944-952. doi: 10.1017/S0007114515000197

Journal - Research Article

McLean, R., Edmonds, J., Williams, S., Mann, J., & Skeaff, S. (2015). Balancing sodium and potassium: Estimates of intake in a New Zealand adult population sample. Nutrients, 7(11), 8930-8938. doi: 10.3390/nu7115439

Journal - Research Article

Shephard, K., Harraway, J., Jowett, T., Lovelock, B., Skeaff, S., Slooten, L., Strack, M., & Furnari, M. (2015). Longitudinal analysis of the environmental attitudes of university students. Environmental Education Research, 21(6), 805-820. doi: 10.1080/13504622.2014.913126

Journal - Research Article

Shephard, K., Harraway, J., Lovelock, B., Mirosa, M., Skeaff, S., Slooten, L., Strack, M., Furnari, M., Jowett, T., & Deaker, L. (2015). Seeking learning outcomes appropriate for 'education for sustainable development' and for higher education. Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education, 40(6), 855-866. doi: 10.1080/02602938.2015.1009871

Journal - Research Article

Zhou, S. J., Skeaff, S. A., Ryan, P., Doyle, L. W., Anderson, P. J., Kornman, L., … Makrides, M. (2015). The effect of iodine supplementation in pregnancy on early childhood neurodevelopment and clinical outcomes: Results of an aborted randomised placebocontrolled trial. Trials, 16, 563. doi: 10.1186/s13063-015-1080-8

Journal - Research Article

Herbst, C., Menon, K. C., Ferguson, E. L., Thomson, C. D., Bailey, K., Gray, A. R., … Skeaff, S. A. (2014). Dietary and non-dietary factors associated with serum zinc in Indian women. Biological Trace Element Research, 161(1), 38-47. doi: 10.1007/s12011-014-0090-9

Journal - Research Article

Jowett, T., Harraway, J., Lovelock, B., Skeaff, S., Slooten, L., Strack, M., & Shephard, K. (2014). Multinomial-regression modeling of the environmental attitudes of higher education students based on the Revised New Ecological Paradigm Scale. Journal of Environmental Education, 45(1), 1-15. doi: 10.1080/00958964.2013.783777

Journal - Research Article

More publications...