Andrea Buchholz, PhD, RD

Andrea Buchholz, PhD, RD; Professor, Applied Human Nutrition
Professor, Applied Human Nutrition
Department of Family Relations & Applied Nutrition
Phone number: 
519-824-4120, ext 52347
Dept Family Relations and Applied Nutrition, University of Guelph, Room 235 Macdonald Institute, Guelph ON Canada, N1G 2W1
Body Composition Lab, Rooms 285-287, Food Science Addition and HHNS Annex


I am a Registered Dietitian and the Director of the University of Guelph Body Composition Lab. As a co-investigator of the Guelph Family Health Study (, my research interests relate to predictors and outcomes of childhood and adult obesity. I am interested in the associations between lifestyle behaviours (diet, physical activity, screen time, sleep) and body composition.

Accepting graduate students:

2022: Yes

Current Teaching:

Fall 2021: FRAN*6610: Advances in Clinical Nutrition
Winter 2022: NUTR*1020 (Professional Practice in Applied Nutrition); NUTR*4900 (Selected Topics in Applied Nutrition, focused on clinical nutrition)



  • Academic Lead, Educational Leadership in Teaching Excellence program
  • Host, "Let's Talk About Teaching" teaching circle, FRAN

When Not Professing, I ...
...volunteer with Up and Running Guelph.
...take long walks while listening to podcasts. a comedic improviser.

Post-doctoral fellow - University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2004

Post-doctoral fellow - Vanderbilt University Medical Center, 2003

PhD (Nutritional Sciences) - University of Toronto, 2002                                                                                                                                                                                                

Dietetic internship:  Hamilton Health Sciences, 1995

MSc (AHN) - University of Guelph, 1994

B.A.A. (Foods and Nutrition), Ryerson University, 1992


My research interests relate to predictors and outcomes of childhood and adult obesity. Currently, I am interested in the association between sugar intake and body composition in young children, lifestyle behaviours and body composition outcomes in young children, and the ability of anthropometrics (waist circumference, waist-to-height ratio) to predict pediatric cardiometabolic risk.

(*denotes student collaboration): 

*Hruska V, *Ambrose V, Darlington G, Ma DWL, Haines J, Buchholz AC. Stress is associated with adiposity in parents of young children. Obesity (Silver Spring). 2020 Mar 28(3):655-659.


*Krystia O, *Ambrose T, Darlington G, Ma DWL, Buchholz AC, Haines J. Guelph Family Health Study. A randomized home-based childhood obesity-prevention intervention has favourable long-term effects on parental body composition: Guelph Family Health Study.  BMC Obesity.  2019;6(10):1-9

*Wong S, Kong KL, Buchholz AC, Haines J. The reinforcing value of food and non-food alternative: Associations with BMI z-score and percent fat mass. Eating Behaviors. 2019; Aug;34:101316.


I collaborate with Dr. David Ma and Dr. Jess Haines and other University of Guelph researchers on the Guelph Family Health Study.

I am co-principal investigator (with Anisha Mahajan) of a research grant, "Examining longitudinal associations between dietary sugar and anthropometrics among young children in the Guelph Family Health Study."

Current Trainees:


Sarah Wedde (MSc, co-advised with Dr. Jess Haines): Lifestyle behaviours and body composition outcomes among children in the Guelph Family Health Study

MacKenzie Harris (MSc, co-advised with Dr. Gen Newton): Using integrated knowledge mobilization to develop novel nutrition education strategies to increase dairy consumption of preschool-aged children

Darla Barsse Maldonado (MSc): Waist circumference and waist-to-height ratio and pediatric cardiometabolic risk


I am interested in investigating the following in families with young children:

  • Plant-based diets, body weight and cardiometabolic risk (*priority for MSc student in F22)
  • Longitudinal associations between sugar intake and body composition
  • Development of percent fat mass references for young children
  • Dairy intake and body composition
  • Effect of the COVID pandemic on weight and body composition