The aim of this project is to examine how varied changes to the school food environment affect children’s food choices and dietary intake, lunchroom waste, and overall financial costs. The following environmental interventions will be investigated: 1) removing unhealthy choices from the school lunchroom and promoting the remaining healthy options (Healthy Choices condition); 2) maintaining a range of healthy and less healthy products and nudging students toward the healthy items (Healthy Nudge condition); and 3) maintaining the full range of options without nudging (control condition). Three large schools from an ethnically diverse, severely economically disadvantaged inner-city school district will be recruited and randomly assigned to one of the three conditions. Outcome data will include: 1) competitive food purchases, assessed using electronic point-of-purchase monitoring and supplemented by data from digital cameras; 2) dietary recall data (i.e., caloric intake, fruit/vegetable intake, whole grains, fiber, sodium, sugar, and saturated fat) measured using the Automated Self-Administered 24-hour dietary recall; 3) food waste data analyzed monthly for each food item; and 4) financial (profit/loss) data from the district food service.
Examining Student Reactions to Varied Strategies for Presenting and Promoting Healthy and Unhealthy School Lunch Offerings
Farm-to-School Education Grants Reach Low-Income Children and Encourage Them to Learn About Fruits and Vegetables
For children from low-income families, school meals are a significant portion of daily caloric intake and hence an opportunity to address food insecurity. Many states have pursued legislation to institutionalize programs such as farm to school that aim to improve the quality of school meals and acceptance of healthy foods … More
Digital Food and Beverage Marketing Environments in a National Sample of Middle Schools: Implications for Policy and Practice
One promising approach to influence nutrition behavior is to limit food and beverage marketing to children. Children are a lucrative market and schools may be an effective setting in which to intervene. Studies have shown that marketing in schools is prevalent but little is known about digital marketing to students … More
This Brief summarizes select characteristics of state-level policies and programs to test for lead in school drinking water. It is based on a study from researchers at the Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health and the University of California Nutrition Policy Institute. The full results of the study, … More