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Research

Recent Nutrition Assistance Publications and Reports

This page offers relevant research and commentary relating to food assistance programs such as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Women, Infants, and Children (WIC), and child nutrition. Nutrition assistance publications and reports archive available here.

 

SNAP

 

 

 

 

  • Paarlberg, R., Mozaffarian, D., Micha, R. and Chelius, C., KEEPING SODA IN SNAP: Understanding the other iron triangle. Society, 55(4), pp.1-10.

    Based on interviews with participants in U.S. national policy-making, this article reviews three political dynamics that oppose a limitation on sugar-sweetened beverage purchase using SNAP benefit.

 

 

 

 

  • Rahkovsky, I., Young, J., and Carlson, A. Consumers balance time and money in purchasing convenience foods, ERR-251, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service, June 2018.

    This report uses descriptive statistics and a consumer demand model to analyze where households purchase food (e.g., full-service restaurants) and types of food purchased (e.g., ready-to-eat foods) based on households characteristics, including SNAP participation.

 

 

This article quantifies how food pricing policies to subsidize healthy foods and tax unhealthy foods could affect the US cardiometabolic disease (CMD) mortality, overall and by SNAP eligibility and participation, finding steeper CMD reductions for SNAP participants relative to non-participants.

 

This article contributes to research on food deserts by assessing how shopping patterns differ across food retail environments. Small differences in SNAP benefit spending between households with low and high access to supermarkets suggest that SNAP participants’ inability to reach healthy food retailers is at most a minor driver of geographic disparities in nutrition and health outcomes.

 

Child Nutrition

 

  • Weber, S., Uesugi, K., Greene, H., Bess, S., Reese, L., and Odoms-Young, A. 2018. Preferences and perceived value of WIC foods among WIC caregivers. Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior, 50(7), 695-704.

    Authors use surveys and in-depth interviews to better understand WIC caregivers’ preferences of WIC foods, value of WIC packages, and factors that influence each, providing insight for structure of WIC package.

 

 

 

 

This article, co-authored by a RIDGE grantee, compares dietary quality and feeding practices of child care centers by CACFP participation status, finding some nutritional advantages at CACFP-participating centers while also suggesting strategies for nutritional improvement across all centers.

 

Building on previous analysis of 2012 statewide changes to school competitive food and beverage standards in Massachusetts, this article, co-authored by a RIDGE grantee, assesses impact on food manufacturer product reformulation in response to the standards, providing implications for national Smart Snacks standards.

 

Additional Research