Hope A. Weiler

Associate Professor; Canada Research Chair (Tier I) Chair in Nutrition and Health Across the Lifespan

Director, Mary Emily Clinical Nutrition Research Unit

T: 514-398-7905  | hope.weiler [at] mcgill.ca (Email) |  Macdonald-Stewart Bldg MS2-042A

Degrees

  • Ph.D. 1996, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario 1993-1996.
  • B.Sc. 1991 University of Guelph, Guelph, Ontario, 1987-1991.

Short Bio

Dr. Hope Weiler is an Associate Professor and Registered Dietitian in the School of Dietetics and Human Nutrition in the Faculty of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences at McGill University.  Her education includes a B.A.Sc. in Applied Human Nutrition, University of Guelph; and a Ph.D. in Medical Sciences, Cell Biology and Metabolism, McMaster University.  Dr. Weiler is currently in receipt of a Canada Research Chair at McGill University where her research focus is on mineral and lipid nutrients, including vitamin D, and the role in bone mineral acquisition in children and maintenance in adulthood in urban and Indigenous populations in Canada.  She is the co-chair for the National Inuit Health Surveys Working Group and administrative principal investigator managing the International Polar Year Inuit Health Survey of 2007-2008.  To date, Dr. Weiler has authored over 140 peer-reviewed publications and provided graduate training to over 50 graduate trainees and 40 undergraduate students. Dr. Weiler has been awarded prestigious awards from the Canada Research Chairs program, the New Investigator Award from the Canadian Nutrition Society and the Wiebe Visser International Nutrition Dairy Prize from the International Dairy Federation for her work in nutrition and bone health.  She has served numerous societies, organizations and areas of nutrition.  She is past Chair of Food, Nutrition and Health peer-review committee for the Canadian Institutes of Health Research.  Dr. Weiler is director of the Mary Emily Clinical Nutrition Unit of McGill and is a member of the editorial boards of Nutrition Research and The Journal of Nutrition. 

Awards and Recognitions

  • Canada Research Chair Tier I, Canada Research Chairs 2015-2022
  • Wiebe Visser International Nutrition Dairy Prize, International Dairy Federation 2010
  • New Investigator Award (15 y postdoctoral), Canadian Nutrition Society 2010
  • Norman Kretchmer Memorial Award in Nutrition and Development, American Society for Nutrition 2007
  • Canada Research Chair Tier II, Canada Research Chairs 2005-2015

Active Affiliations

  • Editorial Board Member, Journal of Nutrition
  • Editorial Board Member, Nutrition Research

Professional Memberships

  • Canadian Nutrition Society
  • Dietitians of Canada
  • College of Dietitians of Ontario
  • American Society for Nutrition
  • American Society for Bone and Mineral Research
  • International Society for the Study of Fatty Acids and Lipids

Research Interests

Nutrition has life-long impacts on health.  Early nutrition during fetal development is related to how a child grows and even health as an adult.  Dr. Weiler’s research is focused on how vitamin D and omega fatty acids relate to development and maintenance of health body weights and bone health.

Current Research

Dr Weiler's research program focuses on nutrition and musculoskeletal health at all ages.

Mission: to improve understanding and attainment of musculoskeletal health over the lifespan through food and nutrition within the context of lifestyle and environment.

Vision: to provide world-class research training and evidence to improve nutrition guidelines, food policy and health recommendations in the achievement of musculoskeletal health across the lifespan.

Many projects are related to vitamin D and omega fatty acid intakes and status as a means to clarify dietary recommendations and ultimately improve population health status. Methodology is translational from experimental studies to population measures to randomized trials. Bone health and lean body mass are examined using dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry and peripheral quantitative computed tomography imaging, complemented by biochemical markers of bone and muscle metabolism as well as nutritional status.  Visit the Mary Emily Clinical Nutrition Research Unit website for further information on various research studies and research facilities.

  • Inuit Health Survey 2007-2008, a legacy study originally funded by the International Polar Year Fund and CIHR.  As the principal investigator for this legacy study, I oversee the use of this important dataset of 2595 Inuit adults and 388 Inuit children.  My group led the analysis of vitamin D and bone health.  We are continuing this work in the context of diabetes mellitus type 2.  Future research directions are under discussion in collaboration with Inuit and academic colleagues.

  • MY LIFE Study: McGill Youth Lifestyle Intervention with Food and Exercise. This is a study of obese children between 6 and 12 years of age that spanned one year. Families attended various research visits for tracking of health behaviors and outcomes in the children. Being a randomized trial, some participants received the lifestyle intervention whereas the control or reference group receives this upon completion of the year.  As part of this research area, the role of omega fatty acids in body composition and bone health is explored. (NSERC funded)

  • Vitamin D requirements of young children 2 to 8 years of age. This is a series of randomized dose-response trials of vitamin D intakes through foods enhanced with vitamin D. Main outcome measures including vitamin D status as well as health outcomes, in particular bone health and body composition using dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry. (Dairy Farmers of Canada funded 2014-2016)

  • Randomized trial of improving milk intake in the development of peak bone mass. This randomized trial will use motivational counseling methods to improve milk intake in adolescents between 14 and 18 years of age. Bone health outcomes will be tracked to establish if improving milk intakes to the recommendation enhances peak bone mass as measured using dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry and peripheral quantitative computed tomography imaging. (Agriculture Canada funded 2013-2016)

  • Approximately 25% of infants are born with low vitamin D stores.  This research will screen newborns for low vitamin D status at birth and invite those with low stores to participate in a randomized trial of the standard of care or a higher dose vitamin D supplement. The main objective of the study will be to test if more rapid building of healthy vitamin D stores improves quality of growth (lean body phenotype) during infancy.  Lean mass will be measured across infancy and to 3 y of age using dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry. Epigenetic mechanisms will be tested with collaborators in the Faculty. (CIHR Funded 2015-2022)

Courses

NUTR 545 Clinical Nutrition 2 4 Credits
    Offered in the:
  • Fall
  • Winter
  • Summer

 Publications

To view a list of Dr. Weiler's publications, click here.