Nutrition Research

Getting Started in Research

HNU faculty are always looking for curious, hard-working and motivated students who are eager to challenge themselves and learn new things.  

One of the advantages of attending a small, primarily undergraduate university is that students can obtain faculty mentorship and research training as early as the sophomore year. This can lead to summer work as a research assistant, undergraduate research awards, and an exciting honours project. 

HNU Faculty have expertise in diverse areas of human nutrition research including, but not limited to: 

  • Health education and practice 

  • Population and public health 

  • Chronic disease prevention and management 

  • Clinical nutrition 

  • Sports nutrition 

  • Indigenous culture and nutrition curricula 

  • Healthy aging 

  • Food systems 

  • Investigating the functional and health properties of food 

  • Nutritional science 

  • Food product development 

For details on the opportunities that are presented in the HNU Honours program, visit the program documentation page.

Group of people standing and smiling for photo
2018-19 HNU Honours students with Faculty Advisors and Committee Members

Published Work

Many HNU Honours graduates and senior students have presented and published their undergraduate research in collaboration with their faculty advisors. Graduates have gone on to complete advanced studies (Masters, Ph.D.) in fields such as human nutrition, food science, nutritional sciences and nutrigenomics, social sciences, public health, and dietetics. 

Publications & knowledge translation documents: [*denotes student author]

Jamieson, JA, Viana*, L. English, M. (2020) Folate content and chemical composition of commercially available gluten-free flour alternatives. Plant Foods Hum Nutr, 75, 337-343.

Jamieson, JA, Neufeld*, A. (2020) Food sources of energy and nutrients among Canadian adults following a gluten-free diet. PeerJ 8:e9590

Jamieson, JA, Rosta*, E, Gougeon, L. (2020) Grain Products are a Top Source of Energy and Nutrients among Nova Scotian Adults following a Gluten-free Diet. Cdn J Diet Pract Res. In press, 9 Sept 2020

Burrell, H*.,  English, M., & Cohen A. (2019). Investigating antihypertensive, Angiotensin-I Converting Enzyme (ACE)-inhibitory activity of soldier bean protein hydrolysates. Canadian Journal of Dietetic Practice and Research, 80, 159-160.

Maccharles*, L., BSc 2018, Fox, A. (2019). Exploring Food Guidance Approaches for Seniors in Antigonish, NS: Is There Still Gold at the End of the Rainbow? Can J Diet Pract Res, 80(3): 137-139.

English, M., Viana*, L. BSc 2017, and McSweeney, M. (2019). Effect of soaking on the functional properties of Yellow-eyed bean flour and the acceptability of chocolate brownies. Journal of Food Science, 83, 623-628.

English, M., Keough*, M., BSc 2018, McSweeney, & M., Razul, S. (2019). Impact of a novel cryoprotectant blend on the quality of frozen lobster (Homarus americanus).Journal of Food Science: Sensory and Consumer Science, 84(6):1547-1553.

Jamieson, JA, Weir, M*, BSc 2015, Gougeon, L. (2018) Canadian packaged gluten-free foods are less nutritious than their regular gluten-containing counterparts.  PeerJ 6:e5875

Reynolds* E, BSc 2011, Johnson C, Jamieson JA, Mawhinney* H, BSc 2015 (2018) Prevalence and Correlates of Food Insecurity among Students Attending a Small, Rural Canadian University. Cdn J Diet Pract Res. March 15, 2018:

Sarah Ngunangwa*, BSc 2016, Doris Gillis, PhD, Christine Johnson, Dianne Oickle. Practice Perspectives: Barriers and Enablers to Addressing Health Equity in Public Health Practice. A Briefing Note. Available at:
Wood, Jennifer BSc, 2013*; Gillis, Doris E, PhD. Exploring Dietitians' Engagement with Health Literacy: Concept and Practice. CANADIAN JOURNAL OF DIETETIC PRACTICE AND RESEARCH  2015; 76(2): 51-55.  Available at:
Dietitians of Canada. Hemochromatosis/Haemochromatosis Background. In: PEN: Practice-based Evidence in Nutrition ®. March-22-2015. Available from: Access only by subscription. Author: Jamieson, JA, PhD. Student contributors*: Barry A, Cleveland T, DeCoste S, Lee J, MacDonald AT, Stanford K, Negus K, Ramsay M, Reeves R, Woodrow B, BSc 2015

Conference Presentations

Jamieson, JA, Rosta, E*, Gougeon, L. Poster: “Quality of gluten-free diets using the NOVA food processing system: piloting the GFStudy in Nova Scotia.” Presented at the Canadian Nutrition Society Annual Meeting, May 3-5, 2018, Halifax, NS. Abstract published in the Journal Appl Physiol Nutr Metab; 43(4):Suppl 1, S1-S42.

Jamieson, JA, PhD, Mawhinney, H*, BSc, 2014, Aucoin, EJ*, BSc 2015 (HKIN), Kane, DA, PhD “Adequacy of vitamin B6 and effects  of supplementation on high-intensity exercise performance in collegiate distance runners: a pilot study”. Poster presentation at Canadian Nutrition Society Annual Meeting, May 25-27, 2017, Montreal, QC.

Morgan R*, BSc 2014 and Gougeon L, PhD. “Perceptions of Dietary Resilience among Older Community- Dwelling and Long Term Care Residents”. Mount Saint Vincent University’s Nova Scotia Centre on Aging. “Our Future is Aging: Current Research on Knowledge, Practice and Policy.” June 16-17, 2016, Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Gillis, D.E., PhD, Johnson, C, MSc,  Ngunangwa, S*., BSc 2015, Stothart, C*, BSc 2011. & Williams, P.  “Knowledge Mobilization and Participatory Action Research: A Journey to Make Food Matter”. Poster presentation at the Critical Dietetic Conference, Manchester, UK, August 15, 2015.

Stanford, KS*, BSc 2014 & Jamieson JA, PhD. "Iron and carbohydrate inadequacy in varsity cross-country female runners despite an energy- balanced diet". Poster presentation at Canadian Nutrition Society Annual Meeting. St. John’s, Newfoundland, June 5-7, 2014.

Wood, J* BSc, 2013 & Gillis, D., PhD. “Exploring dietitians’ engagement with the concept of health literacy”. Poster presentation at the Critical Dietetic Conference, Acadia University, August 15-17, 2013.

Weir M*, BSc 2015, Garbary D, PhD Naczk M, PhD Jamieson J, PhD.  "Exploring the functional food potential of local seaweed species”.  Maritime Natural Products Conference and Academic-Industry Connector. Antigonish, NS, August 13-14, 2013.

Publications acknowledging undergraduate HNU Student Research

Jamieson JA, Gougeon L (2017) Gluten-free foods in rural Maritime Provinces: limited availability, high price, and low iron content. Cdn J Diet Pract Res. Published on the web 11 August 2017, Special thanks to Research Assistants: Mary Weir, BSc 2015 Ashley Doucette-Tamane, BSc 2015, Taylor Nicholson, BSc 2014 and Sarah Watters, BSc 2016.

For more information on Canadian graduate programs in Nutrition and Dietetics please click on the following links:


StFX Student Career Services  

For more information on Graduate School Funding Opportunities please click on the following links: 

Canadian Institute of Health (CIHR) Training Programs
Social Science and Humanities Research Council Funding
Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada - Students
Nova Scotia Health Research Foundation Scotia Scholars Awards