Professor Elaine Rush
Professor of Nutrition
Phone: +64 9 921 9999 ext 8091
- Doctor of Philosophy in Physiology
- Master of Science (First Class Honours) Physiology
- Registered Nutritionist
- Fellow of the the Society of Cardiopulmonary Technology
Memberships and Affiliations:
- Editorial Board European Journal of Clinical Nutrition
- Editorial Board, Biological Trace Element Research
- Editorial Board, Obesity Research and Clinical Practice
- NZ representative Australia New Zealand Obesity Society Council and International Association for the Study of Obesity Council
- Council member and Scientific Director – New Zealand Nutrition Foundation
Professor Elaine Rush has been involved with and passionate about health and education for all her working career. She has research expertise in the measurement of body composition, energy expenditure, physical activity, nutrition and risk factors for disease. A particular interest in ethnic differences particularly among Maori, Pacific Island, European, Chinese and Indian populations in New Zealand has led to over 90 peer reviewed publications. Elaine also serves on the Councils of a number of nutrition and obesity organisations and is the New Zealand representative for the International Association for the Study of Obesity, IASO. She has been an expert consultant for the World Health Organisation and continues to provide expert consultation the International Atomic Energy Agency in Nutrition and Health.
One of the tools she uses in her research is stable isotopes and this expertise has led to her involvement in the 2002 child nutrition survey in New Zealand and working with cooperative research projects and training overseen by the International Atomic Energy Agency, Division of Human Health. Elaine supervises ten masters (2) and doctoral students (9) in the areas of nutrition, body composition and energy expenditure throughout the lifecycle. Her research projects include a large diabetes prevention strategy, Project Energize in the Waikato, the health and growth of children whose mother’s had gestational diabetes and the longitudinal Pacific Island Family study which is tracking over 1000 Pacific children from birth. Other interests include the acute and chronic interactions of different nutrients including sugar, caffeine and vitamin B12 on metabolism and the development of disease.
- Nutrition health promotion (postgraduate)
- Applied Sport and Exercise Studies (postgraduate)
- Mentorship and moderation of the Certificate in Pacific Nutrition with Pacific Heartbeat, National Heart Foundation
Professor Elaine Rush has been involved in health and education for all her working career. She has an MSc and a PhD in physiology from the University of Auckland and is a registered nutritionist.
Dr Rush has research expertise in the measurement of body composition, energy expenditure, physical activity, nutrition and risk factors for disease. A particular interest in ethnic differences among Maori, Pacific Island, European, Chinese and Indian populations in New Zealand has led to over 75 peer reviewed publications. Elaine also serves on the Councils of a number of nutrition and obesity organisations and is the New Zealand representative for the International Association for the Study of Obesity, IASO. She has been an expert consultant for the World Health Organisation and the International Atomic Energy Agency in Nutrition and Health.
Her research projects are directed towards the prevention of disease across the life cycle. In 2004 working with two older NZ Indian community groups a successful programme to reduce risk for cardiovascular disease was undertaken. At present in New Zealand she is looking at the best ways to treat gestational diabetes and in Pune, India is assisting with projects looking at maternal nutrition and effects on future health.
Current Research Projects:
- Lifecourse model of disease – from conception to chronic disease with attention to vitamin B12 in Indian – collaboration with Dr Ranjan Yajnik, Pune, India
- Metformin vs insulin in treatment of gestational diabetes – follow up of child growth and development with Dr Janet Rowan, National Women’s Health
- Lifestyle and environmental intervention - physical activity, diet and environment. E.g Operation snack attack/Feed Your Need to Succeed
- Metformin in Gestational Diabetes follow up study (funded by the Health Research Council of New Zealand)
- Pacific Islands Families Study (funded by the Health Research Council of New Zealand, Foundation for Research, Science & Technology, Child Health Foundation) Food, food security and physical activity patterns in relation to growth
- Evaluation of Project Energize: A Waikato District Health Board project aimed at improving the health of primary school children
- Rush, E., Reed, P., Simmons, D., Coppinger, T., McLennan, S., & Graham, D. (In press). Baseline measures for a school-based obesity control programme: Project Energize: differences by ethnicity, rurality, age and school socioeconomic status. Journal of Paediatrics and Child Health.
- Naik S, Joglekar C, Bhat D, Lubree H, Rege S, Raut K et al. Marked Gender Difference in Plasma Total Homocysteine Concentrations in Indian Adults with low Vitamin B12. Int J Vitam Nutr Res 2011; 81(5): 306-16.
- Bhate V, Joshi S, Ladkat R, Deshmukh U, Lubree H, Katre P et al. Vitamin B12 and folate in pregnancy and offspring motor, mental and social development at two years. Journal of Developmental Origins of Health and Disease 2012; 3(2): 123-30.
- Braakhuis, A., Hopkins, W., Lowe, T., & Rush, E. (2011). Development and validation of a food frequency questionnaire to assess short term antioxidant intake in athletes. International Journal of Sport Nutrition & Exercise Metabolism, 21(2), 105-112.
- Heimuli, J., Sundborn, G., Rush, E., Oliver, M., & Savila, F. (2011). Parental perceptions of their child’s weight and future concern: Pacific Islands Families Study Pacific Health Dialog, 17(2).
- Lubree, H., Katre, P., Joshi, S., Bhat, D., Deshmukh, U., Memame, N., Rush, E. &Yajnik, C. (2011). Child’s homocysteine concentration at 2y is influenced by vitamin B12 and folate status in pregnancy. Journal of Developmental Origins of Health and Disease, 3(1), 32-38. doi:10.1017/S2040174411000602
- Mearns, G., Rush, E., Koziol-McLain, J., & Rowan, J. (2011). Time for a rethink of vitamin B12 injections? NZMJ, 124(1332), Letter.
- Mitchell, B., McLennan, S., Latimer, K., Graham, D., Gilmore, J., & Rush, E. (2011). Improvement of fundamental movement skills through support and mentorship of class room teachers. Obesity Research and Clinical Practice. doi:DOI: 10.1016/j.orcp.2011.11.002
- Rowan, J. A., Rush, E. C., Obolonkin, V., Battin, M., Wouldes, T., & Hague, W. M. (2011). Metformin in Gestational Diabetes: The Offspring Follow-Up (MiG TOFU): Body composition at 2 years of age. Diabetes Care, 34(10), 2279-2284. doi:34/10/2279 [pii] 10.2337/dc11-0660
- Rush, E. (2011). Reducing Obesity Related Chronic Disease: Global Policy Development and Actions from New Zealand [Invited Editorial]. Obesity Research and Clinical Practice, doi:10.1016/j.orcp.2011.10.001.
- Rush, E. (2012). Body composition in a multiethnic community in New Zealand. In V. R. Preddy (Ed.), Handbook of Anthropometry: Physical Measures of Human Form in Health and Disease. New York: Springer.
- Rush, E., & Bristow, S. (2012). Growth and childhood obesity: perspective of Pacific Island children in New Zealand. In V. R. Preddy (Ed.), The Handbook of Growth and Growth Monitoring in Health and Disease (pp. 1621-1633). New York: Springer.
- Rush, E., Coppinger, T., Obolonkin, V., Hinckson, E., McGrath, L., McLennan, S., & Graham, D. (2011). Use of pedometers to identify less active children and time spent in moderate to vigorous physical activity in the school setting. J Sci Med Sport. doi:S1440-2440(11)00188-5 [pii]10.1016/j.jsams.2011.11.001
- Rush, E., Reed, P., McLennan, S., Coppinger, T., Simmons, D., & Graham, D. (2012). A school-based obesity control programme: Project Energize. Two-year outcomes. Brit J Nutr, 107(4), 581-587. doi:10.1017/S0007114511003151
- Rush, E., Reed, P. W., McLennan, S., Coppinger, T., Simmons, D., & Graham, D. (2011). Tracking of body mass indices over 2 years in Maori and European children. Eur J Clin Nutr. doi:ejcn2011130 [pii]10.1038/ejcn.2011.130
- Dugas, L. R., Harders, R., Merrill, S., Ebersole, K., Shoham, D. A., Rush, E. C., et al. Energy expenditure in adults living in developing compared with industrialized countries: a meta-analysis of doubly labeled water studies. Am J Clin Nutr. doi:ajcn.110.007278
- Rush E, Hsi E, Ferguson L, Williams M, Simmons D (2010) Traditional foods reported by a Māori community in 2004. Mai Review 1-10
- Wen J, Rush E, Plank L. Assessment of obesity in New Zealand Chinese: a comparative analysis of adults aged 30-39 years from five ethnic groups. NZMJ 2010;123:12.
- Rush, E. C., Chhichhia, P., Kilding, A. E., & Plank, L. D. Water turnover in children and young adults. Eur J Appl Physiol. 2010, doi:10.1007/s00421-010-1621-5
- Rush, E., Hsi, E., Ferguson, L., Williams, M., & Simmons, D. Traditional foods reported by a Maori community in 2004. Mai Review(2), 2010, 1-10.
- Rush EC, Crook N, Simmons D. Relationships between a walk test, body size and metabolic risk among a New Zealand Maori community. Ann Hum Biol. 2010:37:117-127.
- Oliver, M., Schluter, P. J., Rush, E., Schofield, G. M., & Paterson, J. Physical activity, sedentariness, and body fatness in a sample of 6-year-old Pacific children. Int J Pediatr Obes. 2010, doi:10.3109/17477166.2010.512389
- Simmons, D., Voyle, J., Rush, E., & Dear, M. The New Zealand experience in peer support interventions among people with diabetes. Fam Pract, 2010, 27 Suppl 1, i53-61
- Rush E, Cumin M, Migriauli L, Ferguson L, Plank L. One year effectiveness of risk factor change from a 12 week lifestyle intervention including prescription of kiwifruit Journal of Environmental and Public Health. 2009
- Swinburn BA, Sacks G, Lo SK, Westerterp KR, Rush EC, Rosenbaum M, Luke A, Schoeller DA, DeLany JP, Butte NF, Ravussin E. Estimating the changes in energy flux that characterize the rise in obesity prevalence. Am J Clin Nutr 2009;89:1723-8.
- Rush E, Gao W, Funaki-Tahifote M, et al.(2010) Birth weight and growth trajectory to six years in Pacific children. Int J Pediatr Obes. 2010, 5(2), 192-199.
- Rush EC, Crook N, Simmons D. Optimal waist cutpoint for screening for dysglycaemia and metabolic risk: evidence from a Maori cohort. Br J Nutr. 2009:1-6.
- Rush EC, Freitas I, Plank LD. Body size, body composition and fat distribution: comparative analysis of European, Maori, Pacific Island and Asian Indian adults. Br J Nutr. 2009:1-10.
- Rehrer NJ, Hellemans IJ, Rolleston AK, Rush E, Miller BF. Energy intake and expenditure during a 6-day cycling stage race. Scand J Med Sci Sports 2009.
- Simmons D, Rush E, Crook N. Prevalence of undiagnosed diabetes, impaired glucose tolerance, and impaired fasting glucose among Maori in Te Wai o Rona: Diabetes Prevention Strategy. N Z Med J. 2009;122:30-8.
- Rush E, Paterson J, Obolonkin VV. Food frequency information – relationships to body composition and apparent growth in the Pacific Island Family study at 4 years of age New Zealand Medical Journal 2008
- Rush E, Crook N, Simmons D. Point-of-care testing as a tool for screening for diabetes and prediabetes. Diabetes Medicine 2008; 25, pp. 1070-1075.
- Rush E, Valencia M, Plank L. Validation of a 7-day physical activity diary against doubly-labelled water. Annals of Human Biology 2008; 35: 416-421.
- Simmons D, Rush E, Crook N. Development and piloting of a community health worker based intervention for the prevention of diabetes among New Zealand Maori in Te Wai o Rona: Diabetes Prevention Strategy. Public Health Nutrition 2008 Jun 12:1-8. [Epub ahead of print].
- Duncan JS, Schofield G, Duncan EK, Rush EC. Risk factors for excess body fatness in New Zealand children. Asia Pac J Clin Nutr 2008; 17: 138-47
- Lim S, Chellumuthi C, Crook N, Rush E, Simmons D. Low prevalence of retinopathy, but high prevalence of nephropathy among Maori with newly diagnosed diabetes-Te Wai o Rona: Diabetes Prevention Strategy. Diabetes Res Clin Pract 2008 80; 271-274
Graham D, Appleton S, Rush E, McLennan S, Reed P, Simmons D. Increasing activity and improving nutrition through a schools-based programme: Project Energize. 1. Design, programme, randomisation and evaluation methodology. Public Health Nutr 2008: 11, 1076-1084
Rush EC, Scragg R, Schaaf D, Juranovich G, Plank LD. Indices of fatness and relationships with age, ethnicity and lipids in New Zealand European, Maori and Pacific children. Eur J Clin Nutr 2008
The Vice Chancellor's Research Award for individual Research Excellence 2011
The Vice Chancellor's Research Award for team Research Excellence 2011
Faculty Individual Researcher Excellence Award 2011
NEXT woman of the year finalist in health and science category 2011