Claire Wright

Visiting Lecturer

I am a Senior Lecturer and registered dietitian with more than 10 years NHS and 15 years teaching experience. In 2000 I was involved in the university’s successful bid to provide regional training in nutrition and dietetics from 2001. Due to family commitments I work part-time (0.6wte) and my role focuses on teaching clinical dietetics and research methods modules and writing a PhD by publication. My primary research interest is weight management. From April 2010 to October 2012 I held an Honorary contract with South Manchester University Teaching Hospital and was involved with their research programme looking at the role of weight control in breast cancer prevention. Breast cancer will affect 1 in 8 women in their lifetime and gaining weight in adulthood increases this risk. I have undertaken qualitative research to explore how women with a family history of breast cancer understand the link between weight and increased cancer risk.


BSc in Dietetics - Queen Margaret College

MPhil - Edinburgh University

PG Certificate in Education - University of Liverpool


I have co-authored a paper on self-efficacy which expands our knowledge of how overweight and obese women can be more effective in their weight loss efforts if they understand and plan for situations where they are likely to consume excess calories.  I am also interested in low carbohydrate and intermittent (5:2) diets, as strategies to improve outcomes of weight loss advice. I was a research dietitian and co-author of a paper which demonstrated significantly better % fat loss and reduced insulin resistance on intermittent compared with daily energy restriction in a RCT undertaken with 115 women who had a family history of breast cancer.

This work contributed to the publication of the popular 2 day diet book by Dr Michelle Harvie, a recognised authority on obesity and breast cancer prevention. In January 2015 I chaired a successful research seminar on ‘Why the NHS needs weight management programmes’ delivered by Dr Harvie, this was attended by over 100 staff, students and colleagues from the NHS.



Claire's current role focuses on teaching on the clinical dietetics modules and she is also responsible for ensuring our curriculum meets the various quality assurance and professional guidelines as set out by the BDA, HPC and QAA. She is keen to ensure that our programmes are up-to-date and evidence-based, and in 2007 set up the NW curriculum liaison group, providing a forum for placement providers and academics to debate our curriculum content and priorities.


I have supervised a range of qualitative and quantitative student projects related to this work. I am also the project supervisor for a university-wide survey into sugary drinks, studying consumption, knowledge and attitudes using Bristol Online Survey software.

My interest in cancer prevention stems from working in a range of clinical and research roles in Sheffield, Edinburgh and Manchester, specialising in gastroenterology and GI cancer. Although my current interest is cancer prevention, my earlier research experience was in trying to attenuate weight loss and improve quality of life in cachectic terminally ill pancreatic cancer patients. While working as a research dietitian for the Department of Surgery at the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh I was a member of their nutrition team, worked on the liver transplant unit and completed an MPhil.

Published work

Wright CE, Harvie M, Howell A, Evans DG, Hulbert-Williams N, Donnelly LS. Beliefs about weight and breast cancer: an interview study with high risk women following a 12 month weight loss intervention. See comment in PubMed Commons belowHereditary Cancer in Clinical Practice (2015) 13(1):1. doi:10.1186/s13053-014-0023-9. 

Armitage CJ, Wright C, Parfitt G, Pegington M, Donnelly LS, Harvie M, N. Self-efficacy for temptations is a better predictor of weight loss than motivation and global self-efficacy: Evidence from two prospective studies among overweight/obese women at high risk of breast cancer. Patient Education and Counselling (2014) 95(2), 254–258.

Harvie M, Wright C, Pegington M, McMullen D, Mitchell E, Martin B, Cutler R.G, Evans G, Whiteside, S. Maudsley, S. Camandola S, Wang R, Carlson O.D, Egan, J.M, Mattson, M.P, Howell A. The effect of intermittent energy and carbohydrate restriction versus daily energy restriction on weight loss and metabolic disease risk markers in overweight women. British Journal of Nutrition (2013) 110, 1534-1547.

Wright C. Home Enteral Nutrition. Journal of Community Nursing (2004) 18(2), 8-13. Wright C. A pragmatic guide to evidence-based treatment of community-based undernutrition. Journal of Community Nursing (2002) 16 (10) 20-23.

Wright C. Screening for malnutrition in the community. Journal of Community Nursing (2002) 16 (4) 8-14.

Wright C. A practical guide to setting up a Nutrition Support Team. Complete Nutrition (2001) 1 (2) 19-21.

McMillan DC, Wigmore SJ, Fearon KCH, O’Gorman P, Wright CE, McArdle CS. A prospective randomised study of megestrol acetate and ibruprofen in gastrointestinal cancer patients with weight loss. British Journal of Cancer (1999) 79 (3-4): 76-80.

Publications in maiden name (Plester CE)

Wigmore SJ, Plester CE, Richardson RA and Fearon KCH. Changes in nutritional status associated with unresectable pancreatic cancer. British Journal of Cancer (1997) 75(1), 106-109.

Wigmore SJ, Falconer JS, Plester CE, Ross JA, Maingay JP, Carter DC and Fearon KCH. Ibuprofen reduces energy expenditure and acute-phase protein production compared with placebo in pancreatic cancer patients. British Journal of Cancer (1995) 72 185-188.

Falconer JS, Fearon KCH, Plester CE, Ross JS, Carter DC.Cytokines, the Acute-Phase Response, and Resting Energy Expenditure in Cachectic Patients with Pancreatic Cancer. Annals of Surgery (1994) 219 (4) 325-331.


Wright C, Hulbert-Williams N. Weight gain awareness and attenuation: a phenomenological study of women at increased risk of breast cancer. Psycho-Oncology (2013) 22(Suppl. 1):24.

Wright C, Hulbert-Williams N. Perceiving and rationalising breast cancer risk following weight loss advice: interviews with high risk women. Psycho-Oncology (2013) 22(Suppl. 1):25.

Wright C, Hulbert-Williams N. A phenomenological analysis of women's experiences of trying to lose weight to reduce breast cancer risk. Psycho-Oncology (2013) 22(Suppl. 1):25.

Ward K, Strain NC, Wright CE, James M, Makin AJ. A prospective economic evaluation of the cost of a catheter-related sepsis and the impact of a Nutrition Support Team on cost savings. Proceedings of the Nutrition Society (2000), 60, 84A.

Strain N, Wright C, Ward K and Shaffer JL. Can the true prevalence of malnutrition be assessed at admission to hospital? Proceedings of the Nutrition Society (1999), 58 (8), 112A.

Professional documents

The British Dietetic Association. Curriculum Framework for the Pre-Registration Education and Training of Dietitians April 2008, (Steering Group representative for North West Region).