Research & Publications | Healthy Eating Research

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A click too far from fresh foods: A mixed methods comparison of online and in-store grocery behaviors among low-income households

A recent policy in the U.S. authorized monthly benefits from the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) to be used online to increase grocery access and promote healthy eating. This study examined online grocery attitudes and purchasing behaviors among low-income SNAP-eligible households with young children with and without online grocery experience. An explanatory sequential mixed methods More

Date: April 2022

Resource Type: Journal Article

Focus Areas: Food Retail Nutrition Policy & Programs

Kid Influencer Marketing: Gaps in Current Policies and Research

Most food advertisements that children see are for unhealthy foods and beverages. Paying “influencers”—online celebrities with large social media fan bases—to endorse or promote products on their social media accounts is a relatively new tool that companies use to market their products. Engaging kid influencers has the added bonus of reaching younger audiences. Kids may More

Date: March 2022

Resource Type: Research Brief

Focus Areas: Food Marketing

Marketing of sugar-sweetened children’s drinks and parents’ misperceptions about benefits for young children

Despite expert recommendations, U.S. parents often serve sugar-sweetened children’s drinks, including sweetened fruit-flavored drinks and toddler milks, to young children. This qualitative research explored parents’ understanding of common marketing tactics used to promote these drinks and whether they mislead parents to believe the drinks are healthy and/or necessary for children. We conducted nine focus groups More

Date: February 2022

Resource Type: Journal Article

Focus Areas: Beverages Early Childhood

The Impact of a Pricing Manipulation Intervention on Food Sales in a Small Community Grocery Store in Baltimore City

This study tested a pricing manipulation strategy in a small grocery store to assess the impact on food sales. The prices of 35 healthy foods were decreased over time while simultaneously increasing the prices of 45 unhealthy foods. Trends in sales were examined across each manipulation period. Total sales of healthy foods remained relatively stable More

Keywords: Grocery store

Date: February 2022

Resource Type: Journal Article

Focus Areas: Food Retail Pricing & Economics

The Impact of Pictorial Health Warnings on Purchases of Sugary Drinks for Children: A Randomized Controlled Trial

This study aimed to examine the impact of pictorial warnings on parents’ purchases of sugary drinks for their children in a naturalistic store laboratory. Parents of children ages 2 to 12 (n = 325, 25% identifying as Black, 20% Hispanic) completed a shopping task in a naturalistic store laboratory in North Carolina. Participants were randomly More

Date: February 2022

Resource Type: Journal Article

Focus Areas: Beverages

A Systematic Scoping Review of the Literacy Literature to Develop a Digital Food and Nutrition Literacy Model for Low-income Adults to Make Healthy Choices in the Online Food Retail Ecosystem to Reduce Obesity Risk

Adults with lower incomes are disproportionately affected by poverty, food insecurity, obesity, and diet-related non-communicable diseases (NCDs). In 2020–2021 amid the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) expanded the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) Online Purchasing Pilot program to enable eligible participants to purchase groceries online in 47 states. More

Date: January 2022

Resource Type: Journal Article

Focus Areas: Nutrition Policy & Programs

Recognizing and Supporting School Meal Programs as a Critical Nutrition Safety Net: Lessons from COVID-19

School closures due to the COVID-19 pandemic significantly disrupted children’s access to school meals in 2020 and 2021. School food service authorities (SFAs), which are responsible for planning, sourcing, preparing, and serving school meals, had to rapidly convert their usual on-site meal service operations to more flexible and mobile strategies to distribute meals to students More

Date: January 2022

Resource Type: Research Brief

Focus Areas: Nutrition Policy & Programs School & After School

An Equity-oriented Systematic Review of Online Grocery Shopping Among Low-income Populations: Implications for Policy and Research

Online grocery services are an emerging component of the food system with the potential to address disparities in access to healthy food. We assessed the barriers and facilitators of equitable access to healthy foods in the online grocery environment, and the psychosocial, purchasing, and dietary behaviors related to its use among low-income, diverse populations. Four More

Date: January 2022

Resource Type: Journal Article

Focus Areas: Food Retail

Front-of-package claims & imagery on fruit-flavored drinks and exposure by household demographics

Young children regularly consume sugary fruit drinks, in part because parents may falsely believe they are healthful due to front-of-package (FOP) claims and imagery. The goal of this study was to assess: 1) the prevalence of FOP claims/imagery on fruit-flavored beverages purchased by U.S. households with 0-5-year-olds, and 2) proportional differences in beverages purchased with More

Date: January 2022

Resource Type: Journal Article

Focus Areas: Beverages Early Childhood

Federal Nutrition Programs During the COVID-19 Pandemic: SNAP

The COVID-19 pandemic presented new challenges and exacerbated existing barriers faced by SNAP participants and administrators, such as inequitable access to SNAP online purchasing, overburdened administrative staff and agency systems, and low digital literacy and technology deficits. In response, SNAP online purchasing increased rapidly by March 2021, and program flexibilities and waivers allowed states to More

Date: January 2022

Resource Type: Research Brief

Focus Areas: Nutrition Policy & Programs