Research

In addition to being a source for educational materials and professional development opportunities, the Center for Nutrition in Schools (CNS) is committed to conducting research to evaluate nutrition education strategies and resources.  Research articles and other publications found here provided the foundation for curriculum, Nutrition Education Competencies, and other materials developed by CNS.

Selected Reports

Below are Child Nutrition-related reports written by UC Davis CNS researchers.

Selected Articles

Below are Child Nutrition-related articles written by UC Davis CNS researchers (selected from 78 peer-reviewed publications).

  • Linnell, JD., Zidenberg-Cherr, S., Briggs, M., Scherr, R.E., Hillhouse, J.C., Brian, K., and Smith, M.H. Development and pilot-testing of a comprehensive garden-enhanced nutrition curriculum that utilizes evidence-based education and behavior change strategies as a part of the Shaping Healthy Choices Program. Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior. In Press.
  • Nguyen L, Scherr RE, Linnell JD, Nicholson Y, Spezzano T, Brian K, Ermakov I, Gellermann W, Keen CL, Miyamoto S, Smith MH, Steinberg F, Young HM, Zidenberg-Cherr, S. Evaluating the relationship between plasma and skin carotenoids and reported dietary in elementary school children to assess fruit and vegetable intake.  Journal of Biochemistry and Biophysics. 572:73-80. April 2015.
  • Sutter C, Nishina A, Scherr RE, Zidenberg-Cherr S, Ontai LL. Sharing, trading, stealing: Exploring the role of peers in shaping foods available at lunchtime. J Early Adolescence. (In Press) DOI: 10.1177/0272431614566949.
  • Scherr, R.E., Linnell, J., Smith, M.H., Briggs, M., Bergman, J., Brian, K., Dharmar, M., Feenstra, G., Hillhouse, J.C., Keen, C.L., Nguyen, L.M., Nicholson, Y., Ontai, L.L., Schaefer, S.E., Spezzano, T., Steinberg, F.M, Sutter, C., Wright, J.E., Young, H.M., and Zidenberg-Cherr, S. Development and Implementation Methodologies of a Multi-Component, School-Based Nutrition Education Intervention, The Shaping Healthy Choices Program.  Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior 46(6):e13-e21, DOI: 10.1016/j.jneb.2014.08.010. November-December 2014.
  • Scherr, R.E., Cox, R.J., Feenstra, G., and Zidenberg-Cherr, S. Integrating local agriculture with nutrition education to improve the health of Californians: Current status of garden-based nutrition education and farm-to-school programs in California schools and after-school programs. California Agriculture 67(1):30-37. DOI: 10.3733/ca.v067n01p30. January-March 2013.
  • Hazzard EL, Heneman K, Junge SK, Zidenberg-Cherr S. (2009). “An Evaluation of the 2nd Grade Eating Healthy from Farm to Fork Curriculum.” J Nutr Ed Behav S35-S36.
  • Heneman, K., Junge, S.K., Zidenberg-Cherr, S. (2008). “Reading Across My Pyramid, a nutrition and health education curriculum, increases the health behavior knowledge of lower elementary students.” J Child Nutr and Mgmt, 32(1).
  • Heneman, K., Junge, S.K., Schneider, C., Zidenberg-Cherr, S. (2008). Pilot Implementation of the Improving Children¹s Health through Farming, Food, and Fitness program in select California schools.” J Child Nutr and Mgmt 32(1).
  • Schneider J.M., Fujii M.L., Lamp C.L., Lönnerdal B., Dewey, K.G, and Zidenberg-Cherr, S. (2008). “The use of multiple logistic regression to identify risk factors associated with anemia and iron deficiency in a convenience sample of 12-36-mo-old children from low-income families.” Am J Clin Nutr 87(3), 614-20.
  • Schneider, J.M., Fujii, M.L., Lamp, C.L., Lönnerdal, B., Zidenberg-Cherr, S. (2007). “The prevalence of low serum zinc and copper levels and dietary habits associated with serum zinc and copper in 12- to 36-month-old children from low-income families at risk for iron deficiency.” J Am Diet Assoc 107(11), 1924-9.
  • Kirkpatrick, N., Briggs, M., Zidenberg-Cherr, S. (2006). “Teachers' Attitudes Regarding the Integration of Nutrition into the School Curriculum.” J Nutr Ed Behav. 38 (4), S52. 
  • Heneman, K., Joy, A.B., Zidenberg-Cherr, S., Donohue, S., Garcia, L., Martin, A., Metz, D., Smith, D., West, E., Steinberg, F.M. (2005). “Use of a contract for change to evaluate the effectiveness of nutrition education to increase fruit and vegetable consumption in low income women.”. J Am Diet Assoc 105(11), 1793-1796.
  • Schneider J.M., Fujii M.L., Lamp C.L., Lönnerdal B., Dewey K.G., and Zidenberg-Cherr, S. (2005). “Anemia, iron deficiency, and iron deficiency anemia among 12- to 36-month old children from low-income families. Am J Clin Nutr 82(6), 1269-1275.
  • Graham H, Zidenberg-Cherr S. (2005). “California teachers perceive school gardens as an effective nutritional tool to promote healthful eating habits.” J Am Diet Assoc 105(11):1797-800. 
  • Graham H, Beall DL, Lussier M, McLaughlin P, Zidenberg-Cherr S. (2005). “Use of school gardens in academic instruction.” J Nutr Educ Behav 37(3):147-51. 
  • Briggs, M., S. Safaii, et al. (2003). "Position of the American Dietetic Association, Society for Nutrition Education, and American School Food Service Association--Nutrition services: an essential component of comprehensive school health programs." J Am Diet Assoc 103(4): 505-14.
  • Morris J.L., Koumjian KL, Briggs M, Zidenberg-Cherr S. (2002). “Nutrition to grow on: a garden-enhanced nutrition education curriculum for upper-elementary schoolchildren. J Nutr Educ Behav 34(3):175-6.
  • Morris J.L., Zidenberg-Cherr S. (2002). “Garden-enhanced nutrition curriculum improves fourth-grade school children's knowledge of nutrition and preferences for some vegetables.” J Am Diet Assoc 102(1):91-3.
  • Morris, JL.., Briggs, M., and Zidenberg-Cherr, S. (2002). “Development and evaluation of a garden-enhanced nutrition education curriculum for elementary school children.” J Child Nutr and Mgmt 26(2).

Selected Dissertations

Below are selected dissertations written by UC Davis CNS researchers.

  • Slattery, C.L. (2017). An Exploration of Leadership Development Through Action Inquiry and Its Impact on Educator Self-Efficacy. National University, M.S. Master’s Thesis.
  • Beccarelli, L. (2016). Using Skin Carotenoids to Evaluate Dietary Intake of Fruits and Vegetables and Exploring Lipid Biomarkers to Evaluate Health and Disease Risk in Elementary School Children. UC Davis Ph.D. Dissertation.
  • Linnell, J. (2015). Investigating Factors that Influence the Effectiveness of School-Based Nutrition Education Programs to Improve Children’s Health. UC Davis Ph.D. Dissertation.
  • Bergman, J. (2014). Using Community-Based Participatory Research to Create Sustainable Healthy School Environments and Promote Positive Behavior Changes in School-Aged Children. UC Davis Ph.D. Dissertation.
  • Jones, A. (2013). Nutrition Knowledge and Training Needs in the School Environment. UC Davis Ph.D. Dissertation.
  • Scherr, R. (2011). Development, Implementation, and Evaluation of Nutrition Education Competencies and a Competency-Based Resource Guide for Preschool-Aged Children. UC Davis Ph.D. Dissertation.
  • Briggs, M. (2010). Development of an Integrative Approach for Use in School Communities to Improve Children’s Nutrition and Health. UC Davis Ph.D. Dissertation.
  • Hazzard, E.L. (2010). Utilization of Garden-Based Education to Positively Impact Children’s Nutrition Knowledge and Behaviors. UC Davis Ph.D. Dissertation.
  • Ly, C. (2008). Evaluation of the Healthy Eating Active Living (HEAL) Project. UC Davis Master’s Thesis.
  • Cena, E. (2007). Folate Intake, Food-Related Behaviors, and Nutrition Education in Low-Income Women of Childbearing Age. UC Davis Ph.D. Dissertation.
  • Kirkpatrick, N. (2006). The Nutrition Competencies for California’s Children Pre-Kindergarten through Grade 12. UC Davis Ph.D. Dissertation.
  • Tarry, S. (2004). Evaluation of a Garden Enhanced Nutrition Education Program in Lee Vining, California. UC Davis Master’s Thesis.
  • Graham, H. (2004). The School Environment: Possibilities for the Promotion of Child Health. UC Davis Ph.D. Dissertation.
  • Cesario Heneman, K. (2004). Promotion of Plant Based Foods to Reduce Risk of Chronic Disease. UC Davis Ph.D. Dissertation.
  • Koumijan, K. (2000). The Development and Assessment of a Parent Questionnaire as a Supplement to a Garden-Enhanced Nutrition Education Program for Elementary Aged School Children. UC Davis Master’s Thesis.
  • Morris, JL. (2000). The Development, Implementation, and Evaluation of a Garden-Enhanced Nutrition Education Program for Elementary School Children. UC Davis Ph. D. Dissertation.

Selected Abstracts

Below are selected abstracts written by UC Davis CNS researchers.

  • Morris, J.L., Neustadter, A., Maloney, L. and S. Zidenberg-Cherr, The effect of a garden-based nutrition education program on first graders’ vegetable preferences. FASEB J, 1998, 12: 1363 1998.
  • Morris, J.L., and S. Zidenberg-Cherr. Development of a garden-enhanced nutrition education program for school-aged children. FASEB J, 1999, 13: A868.
  • Morris, J.L. and Zidenberg-Cherr, S. Evaluation of a garden-enhanced nutrition education program for fourth-grade school children. SNE Annual Meeting Proceedings, 1999, p. 33.
  • Morris, J. L., and S. Zidenberg-Cherr, Garden enhanced nutrition-education improves vegetable preferences of fourth-grade school children. FASEB J, 2000, 14:A480.
  • Graham, H., Beall, D.L., Lussier, M., McLaughlin, P., and Zidenberg-Cherr, S.A. Use of School Gardens In California Academic Instruction. FASEB J, 2003, 17: A1094.
  • Graham H, and SA Zidenberg-Cherr. California Teachers Perceptions of School Gardens. JNEB, 2004, 36(S1): S34.
  • Kirkpatrick NJ, Briggs M, and Zidenberg-Cherr S. The Nutrition Competencies for California Children: Pre-Kindergarten through Grade 12. FASEB J, 2006.
  • Tarry S, Heneman K, and Zidenberg-Cherr S. Monogreens: a successful nutrition education program in a rural community. FASEB J, 2006.
  • Junge S, Johns M, Heneman K, Zidenberg-Cherr S, and the Farm to School Workgroup. June 2006. Farm to School and School Wellness… Making the Connections. UC ANR Human Resources Conference, San Jose, California.
  • Heneman K, Junge S, Zidenberg-Cherr S. Reading Across My Pyramid: A Nutrition Education Curriculum Increases the Nutrition Knowledge of First Graders. JNEB, July 2006, 38(S1): S22.
  • Kirkpatrick N, Briggs M, Zidenberg-Cherr S. Teachers’ Attitudes Regarding the Integration of nutrition into the School Curriculum. JNEB, July 2006, 38(S1): S52.
  • Heneman KM, Tarry S, and Zidenberg-Cherr S. 2006. Monogreens: a successful nutrition education program in a rural community. Experimental Biology meeting abstracts. FASEB J, 2006, 20, Abstract #651.5.
  • Kirkpatrick N, Briggs M, Zidenberg-Cherr S. The Nutrition Competencies for California Children: Pre-Kindergarten through Grade 12. Experimental Biology meeting abstracts. FASEB J, 2006, 20, Abstract #651.8.
  • Zidenberg-Cherr S. (2007) Improving Health through Farming, Food, and Fitness. School Wellness Conference, Anaheim, California.
  • Eric L. Hazzard; Karrie M. Heneman, PhD.; Sharon K. Junge; Sheri Zidenberg-Cherr, PhD. (2009) An Evaluation of the 2nd Grade Eating Healthy from Farm to Fork Curriculum. JNEB. 41.
  • Rachel Erin Scherr, Marilyn Brigss, Heather Reed, and Sheri Zidenberg-Cherr. Evaluation and implementation of nutrition competencies and a competency-based resource guide in preschool-aged children FASEB J. 2010 24:940.3.
  • Marilyn M. Briggs, Heather Reed, and Sheri Zidenberg-Cherr. Teachers perceive "California Nutrition Education Competencies, Pre-Kindergarten through Grade Twelve" as a useful framework for classroom instruction. FASEB J. 2010 24:940.6.
  • Eric L Hazzard, Elizabeth Moreno, Deborah Lane Beall, and Sheri Zidenberg-Cherr. An Evaluation of the California Instructional School Garden Program Grants. FASEB J. 2010 24:940.7.
  • Anna Jones, Carol Ly, Lisa Wasilewski, and Sheri Zidenberg-Cherr. Garden-enhanced nutrition education improves nutrition knowledge and behavior in second-grade students FASEB J. 2010 24:940.8.

External Resources 

On our External Resources page we provide links to external sites with content that may be of use to individuals seeking information about curriculum related to nutrition in schools.