Priority Research Centre for

Nutrition and Dietetics

"You are what you eat!" and sometimes, you are what you are NOT eating. The research conducted by members of the Nutrition and Dietetics theme examines the contribution of diet, eating patterns and nutritional status to health and disease outcomes across various life stages from childhood, to pregnancy and older ages and across medical conditions including heart disease and diabetes.

The research also asks whether we can believe exactly what people tell us about what they eat and examines our ability to estimate our food intakes. We use novel strategies to measure dietary biomarkers to come up with an answer as to how well people can estimate what they usually eat and how this affects what we know about eating patterns.

Current Research Programs

Australian Eating Survey® (AES) are a suite of food frequency questionnaires (FFQs) designed to assess usual dietary intake of individuals aged two years and above.

AIM 4 ME - The Advice, Ideas and Motivation for My Eating. Web-based RCT testing varying levels of technology-delivered personalised feedback on dietary patterns in motivating young Australian adults (18-24 years old) to improve diet quality and eating habits.
@Aim4Me_Aus Aim4me

Back 2 Basics Family is an online healthy lifestyle program for families using a non-diet approach to healthy eating.


VISIDA - Voice-Image-Sensor technologies for Individual Dietary Assessment system. Researchers have received a grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to develop a new technology system for assessing food and nutrient intakes of people who live in low and lower-middle income (LMIC) countries.

Healthy Eating Quiz

Healthy Eating Quiz is a freely available online diet quality assessment, evaluating alignment of eating patterns with the Australian Dietary Guidelines.

ServAR - A smartphone app that uses augmented reality to help with diet management during pregnancy.

Back to Basics

Back to Basics Cooking Club and Healthy Lifestyle program - translating Hunter-Illawarra Kids Challenge Using Parent Support (HIKCUPS) to an after school cooking program for children, with parent support, in indigenous families and families with children attending primary school.
Be Healthe for your Heart Be HEALTHe for your HEART is a pilot trial of an online healthy lifestyle intervention for women with a history of pre-eclampsia.
No Money No Time No Money No Time is an online personalised nutrition program to motivate and support young Australians to adopt healthy food habits. Eating behaviours to promote nutrition-related health and wellbeing, and lower chronic disease risk.
Body Balance Beyound Body Balance Beyond is a trial of technology supported nutrition and lifestyle support to women in the Hunter with a past diagnosis of gestational diabetes. This includes the endocrinology team from the John Hunter hospital and HNE Health.
Food Fix FoodFix is a program for adults for addictive / compulsive over eating. This is based on models of obesity combined with models of addiction.

Selected Publications


Dietary Assessment

Article has an altmetric score of 20

Williams RL, Rollo ME, Schumacher T, Collins CE,  'Diet quality scores of australian adults who have completed the healthy eating quiz', Nutrients, 9 (2017)  [C1] DOI 10.3390/nu908087

Article has an altmetric score of 1

Ashton L, Williams R, Wood L, Schumacher T, Burrows T, Rollo M, et al.,  'Comparison of Australian recommended food score (ARFS) and plasma carotenoid concentrations: A validation study in adults', Nutrients, 9 (2017)  [C1] DOI 10.3390/nu9080888

Article has an altmetric score of 13

Collins CE, Burrows TL, Rollo ME, Boggess MM, Watson JF, Guest M, et al.,  'The comparative validity and reproducibility of a diet quality index for adults: The Australian recommended food score', Nutrients, 7 785-798 (2015)  [C1] DOI 10.3390/nu7020785

Food Fix

Article has an altmetric score of 11

Mckenna R, Rollo M, Skinner J, Burrows T,  'Food Addiction Support: Website Content Analysis', JMIR Cardio, 2 1-12 (2018)  [C1] DOI 10.1111/1747-0080.12335

Back to Basics Family

Article has an altmetric score of 24

Chai LK, May C, Collins CE, Burrows TL,  'Development of text messages targeting healthy eating for children in the context of parenting partnerships', Nutrition and Dietetics,  (2018) DOI 10.1111/1747-0080.12498


Article has an altmetric score of 7

Brown HM, Collins CE, Bucher T, Rollo ME,  'Evaluation of the effectiveness and usability of an educational portion size tool, ServARpreg, for pregnant women.', J Hum Nutr Diet,  (2019) DOI 10.1111/jhn.12660

Marshall S, Watson JF, Burrows TL, Guest M, Collins CE,  'The development and evaluation of the Australian child and adolescent recommended food score: A cross-sectional study', Nutrition Journal, 11 96 (2012)  [C1] 10.1186/1479-5868-9-45

Back to Basics Cooking

Article has an altmetric score of 2

Burrows TL, Lucas H, Morgan PJ, Bray J, Collins CE,  'Impact evaluation of an after-school cooking skills program in a disadvantaged community: Back to basics', Canadian Journal of Dietetic Practice and Research, 76 126-132 (2015)  [C1] DOI 10.3148/cjdpr-2015-005

Article has an altmetric score of 1

Burrows T, Bray J, Morgan PJ, Collins C,  'Pilot intervention in an economically disadvantaged community: The back-to-basics after-school healthy lifestyle program', Nutrition and Dietetics, 70 270-277 (2013) [C1] DOI 10.1111/1747-0080.12023

University of Newcastle Student Health Lifestyle Survey

Article has an altmetric score of 11

Whatnall MC, Patterson AJ, Brookman S, Convery P, Swan C, Pease S, Hutchesson MJ,  'Lifestyle behaviors and related health risk factors in a sample of Australian university students', Journal of American College Health,  (2019) DOI 10.1080/07448481.2019.1611580