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Erica Lauren Kenney, Sc.D.

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Overview
Trained in social epidemiology and planned behavior change, my research focuses on identifying successful, efficient, and cost-effective strategies to modify children's environments to make the healthiest choice the easiest choice and to help children form healthy habits for life. I do this through conducting both intervention studies and epidemiological studies. My work is grounded in social ecological theory and the investigation of how children's environments can be feasibly changed to promote healthy eating habits and less screen time. This has resulted in work on developing valid, easy-to-use measures of dietary intake, feeding behaviors, nutrition policies, and the nutrition environment in child care and school settings; conducting and evaluating randomized, controlled trials of school- and afterschool-based interventions; and analyzing national datasets to identify important determinants of nutrition behaviors and obesity risk for children. At the Prevention Research Center, I collaborate with colleagues and community partners to identify and evaluate usable strategies for increasing drinking water access and reducing intake of sugary drinks in school, afterschool, and child care settings. With the Childhood Obesity Intervention Cost Effectiveness Study (CHOICES) team, I also study the cost-effectiveness of different policy strategies to prevent childhood obesity in early care and education settings. As a a faculty member with the Strategic Training Initiative for the Prevention of Eating Disorders (STRIPED), I work with STRIPED trainees to investigate a different dimension of childhood obesity - weight-related discrimination and stigma, and how to ensure that public health efforts to promote healthy eating, physical activity, and healthy weight do not have unintended harmful consequences.

Current projects include a natural experimental evaluation of recent changes to the Child and Adult Care Food Program meal patterns in family child care settings; an implementation science investigation into how policies to promote healthy eating in child care settings nationwide are actually translated; a qualitative investigation of weight discrimination in school settings; and developing measures of exposure to food advertising on mobile devices.

Research
The research activities and funding listed below are automatically derived from NIH ExPORTER and other sources, which might result in incorrect or missing items. Faculty can login to make corrections and additions.
  1. K01DK125278 (KENNEY, ERICA LAUREN) Sep 1, 2021 - Jul 31, 2026
    NIH
    Identifying an implementation strategy to maximize the public health nutrition impact of the Child and Adult Care Food Program
    Role: Principal Investigator

Bibliographic
Publications listed below are automatically derived from MEDLINE/PubMed and other sources, which might result in incorrect or missing publications. Faculty can login to make corrections and additions.
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PMC Citations indicate the number of times the publication was cited by articles in PubMed Central, and the Altmetric score represents citations in news articles and social media. (Note that publications are often cited in additional ways that are not shown here.) Fields are based on how the National Library of Medicine (NLM) classifies the publication's journal and might not represent the specific topic of the publication. Translation tags are based on the publication type and the MeSH terms NLM assigns to the publication. Some publications (especially newer ones and publications not in PubMed) might not yet be assigned Field or Translation tags.) Click a Field or Translation tag to filter the publications.
  1. Kolli A, Mozaffarian RS, Kenney EL. Food Insecurity and Vision Impairment among Adults Age 50 and Older in the United States. Am J Ophthalmol. 2021 Oct 12. PMID: 34653357.
    Citations:    Fields:    
  2. Kenney EL, Dunn CG, Mozaffarian RS, Dai J, Wilson K, West J, Shen Y, Fleischhacker S, Bleich SN. Feeding Children and Maintaining Food Service Operations during COVID-19: A Mixed Methods Investigation of Implementation and Financial Challenges. Nutrients. 2021 Aug 03; 13(8). PMID: 34444851.
    Citations:    Fields:    Translation:HumansPHPublic Health
  3. Andreyeva T, Sun X, Cannon M, Kenney EL. Implementation of Minimum Nutrition Standards and Best Practices in Childcare Centers. J Acad Nutr Diet. 2021 Jun 16. PMID: 34215563.
    Citations:    Fields:    
  4. Kenney EL, Mozaffarian RS, Long MW, Barrett JL, Cradock AL, Giles CM, Ward ZJ, Gortmaker SL. Limiting Television to Reduce Childhood Obesity: Cost-Effectiveness of Five Population Strategies. Child Obes. 2021 Oct; 17(7):442-448. PMID: 33970695.
    Citations:    Fields:    
  5. Kenney EL, Mozaffarian RS, Frost N, Ayers Looby A, Cradock AL. Opportunities to Promote Healthy Weight Through Child Care Licensing Regulations: Trends in the United States, 2016-2020. J Acad Nutr Diet. 2021 09; 121(9):1763-1774.e2. PMID: 33810994.
    Citations: 1     Fields:    
  6. Beckerman-Hsu JP, Aftosmes-Tobio A, Lansburg K, Leonard J, Torrico M, Kenney EL, Subramanian SV, Haneuse S, Davison KK. Summer Weight Gain Among Preschool-Aged Children With Obesity: An Observational Study in Head Start. Prev Chronic Dis. 2021 03 18; 18:E25. PMID: 33734963.
    Citations:    Fields:    Translation:Humans
  7. Beckerman-Hsu JP, Gago C, Aftosmes-Tobio A, Jurkowski JM, Lansburg K, Leonard J, Torrico M, Haneuse S, Subramanian SV, Kenney EL, Davison KK. Acceptability and appropriateness of a novel parent-staff co-leadership model for childhood obesity prevention in Head Start: a qualitative interview study. BMC Public Health. 2021 01 22; 21(1):201. PMID: 33482774.
    Citations:    Fields:    Translation:Humans
  8. Poole MK, Musicus AA, Kenney EL. Alignment Of US School Lunches With The EAT-Lancet Healthy Reference Diet's Standards For Planetary Health. Health Aff (Millwood). 2020 12; 39(12):2144-2152. PMID: 33284707.
    Citations:    Fields:    Translation:HumansAnimalsPHPublic Health
  9. Bauer KW, Chriqui JF, Andreyeva T, Kenney EL, Stage VC, Dev D, Lessard L, Cotwright CJ, Tovar A. A Safety Net Unraveling: Feeding Young Children During COVID-19. Am J Public Health. 2021 01; 111(1):116-120. PMID: 33211589.
    Citations: 3     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  10. Kenney EL, Bleich S, Gortmaker S. Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act: The Author Replies. Health Aff (Millwood). 2020 10; 39(10):1839. PMID: 33017242.
    Citations:    Fields:    Translation:Humans
  11. Poole MK, Cradock AL, Kenney EL. Changes in Foods Served and Meal Costs in Boston Family Child Care Homes after One Year of Implementing the New Child and Adult Care Food Program Nutrition Standards. Nutrients. 2020 Sep 15; 12(9). PMID: 32942588.
    Citations:    Fields:    Translation:Humans
  12. Kenney EL, Barrett JL, Bleich SN, Ward ZJ, Cradock AL, Gortmaker SL. Impact Of The Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act On Obesity Trends. Health Aff (Millwood). 2020 07; 39(7):1122-1129. PMID: 32634356.
    Citations: 17     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  13. Poole MK, Cradock AL, Kenney EL. Implementing the New Child and Adult Care Food Program's Nutrition Standards in Boston. Prev Chronic Dis. 2020 06 18; 17:E44. PMID: 32553072.
    Citations: 1     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  14. Vercammen KA, Frelier JM, Poole MK, Kenney EL. Obesity prevention in early care and education: a comparison of licensing regulations across Canadian provinces and territories. J Public Health (Oxf). 2020 05 26; 42(2):362-373. PMID: 32090258.
    Citations: 1     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  15. Kenney EL, Poole MK, Cory H, Cradock AL. Impact of changes to the Child and Adult Care Food Program on children's dietary intake in family child care homes. Public Health Nutr. 2020 08; 23(11):2016-2023. PMID: 32301413.
    Citations: 2     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  16. Dunn CG, Kenney E, Fleischhacker SE, Bleich SN. Feeding Low-Income Children during the Covid-19 Pandemic. N Engl J Med. 2020 Apr 30; 382(18):e40. PMID: 32227759.
    Citations: 64     Fields:    Translation:HumansPHPublic Health
  17. Kenney EL, Daly JG, Lee RM, Mozaffarian RS, Walsh K, Carter J, Gortmaker SL. Providing Students with Adequate School Drinking Water Access in an Era of Aging Infrastructure: A Mixed Methods Investigation. Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2019 12 20; 17(1). PMID: 31861778.
    Citations:    Fields:    Translation:Humans
  18. Kenney EL, Cradock AL, Long MW, Barrett JL, Giles CM, Ward ZJ, Gortmaker SL. Cost-Effectiveness of Water Promotion Strategies in Schools for Preventing Childhood Obesity and Increasing Water Intake. Obesity (Silver Spring). 2019 12; 27(12):2037-2045. PMID: 31746555.
    Citations: 1     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  19. Kenney E, Hawdon JM, O'Halloran D, Eleftherianos I. Heterorhabditis bacteriophora Excreted-Secreted Products Enable Infection by Photorhabdus luminescens Through Suppression of the Imd Pathway. Front Immunol. 2019; 10:2372. PMID: 31636642.
    Citations: 7     Fields:    Translation:AnimalsCells
  20. Daepp MIG, Gortmaker SL, Wang YC, Long MW, Kenney EL. WIC Food Package Changes: Trends in Childhood Obesity Prevalence. Pediatrics. 2019 05; 143(5). PMID: 30936251.
    Citations: 6     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  21. Lee RM, Giles CM, Cradock AL, Emmons KM, Okechukwu C, Kenney EL, Thayer J, Gortmaker SL. Impact of the Out-of-School Nutrition and Physical Activity (OSNAP) Group Randomized Controlled Trial on Children's Food, Beverage, and Calorie Consumption among Snacks Served. J Acad Nutr Diet. 2018 08; 118(8):1425-1437. PMID: 30055710.
    Citations: 5     Fields:    Translation:HumansAnimalsPHPublic Health
  22. Andreyeva T, Kenney EL, O'Connell M, Sun X, Henderson KE. Predictors of Nutrition Quality in Early Child Education Settings in Connecticut. J Nutr Educ Behav. 2018 05; 50(5):458-467. PMID: 29478954.
    Citations: 6     Fields:    Translation:HumansPHPublic Health
  23. Kenney EL, Wintner S, Lee RM, Austin SB. Obesity Prevention Interventions in US Public Schools: Are Schools Using Programs That Promote Weight Stigma? Prev Chronic Dis. 2017 12 28; 14:E142. PMID: 29283880.
    Citations: 7     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  24. Brooks CJ, Gortmaker SL, Long MW, Cradock AL, Kenney EL. Racial/Ethnic and Socioeconomic Disparities in Hydration Status Among US Adults and the Role of Tap Water and Other Beverage Intake. Am J Public Health. 2017 09; 107(9):1387-1394. PMID: 28727528.
    Citations: 18     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  25. Kenney EL, Lee RM, Brooks CJ, Cradock AL, Gortmaker SL. What Do Children Eat in the Summer? A Direct Observation of Summer Day Camps That Serve Meals. J Acad Nutr Diet. 2017 Jul; 117(7):1097-1103. PMID: 28330733.
    Citations: 4     Fields:    Translation:HumansAnimalsPHPublic Health
  26. Kenney EL, Gortmaker SL. United States Adolescents' Television, Computer, Videogame, Smartphone, and Tablet Use: Associations with Sugary Drinks, Sleep, Physical Activity, and Obesity. J Pediatr. 2017 03; 182:144-149. PMID: 27988020.
    Citations: 35     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  27. Cradock AL, Barrett JL, Kenney EL, Giles CM, Ward ZJ, Long MW, Resch SC, Pipito AA, Wei ER, Gortmaker SL. Using cost-effectiveness analysis to prioritize policy and programmatic approaches to physical activity promotion and obesity prevention in childhood. Prev Med. 2017 02; 95 Suppl:S17-S27. PMID: 27773710.
    Citations: 14     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  28. Kenney EL, Gortmaker SL, Cohen JF, Rimm EB, Cradock AL. Limited School Drinking Water Access for Youth. J Adolesc Health. 2016 07; 59(1):24-9. PMID: 27235376.
    Citations: 5     Fields:    Translation:HumansPHPublic Health
  29. Kenney E, Adhikari K. Recent developments in identifying and quantifying emotions during food consumption. J Sci Food Agric. 2016 Aug; 96(11):3627-30. PMID: 26991952.
    Citations: 5     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  30. Kenney EL, Redman MT, Criss S, Sonneville KR, Austin SB. Are K-12 school environments harming students with obesity? A qualitative study of classroom teachers. Eat Weight Disord. 2017 Mar; 22(1):141-152. PMID: 26980318.
    Citations: 3     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  31. Mozaffarian RS, Gortmaker SL, Kenney EL, Carter JE, Howe MC, Reiner JF, Cradock AL. Assessment of a Districtwide Policy on Availability of Competitive Beverages in Boston Public Schools, Massachusetts, 2013. Prev Chronic Dis. 2016 Mar 03; 13:E32. PMID: 26940299.
    Citations: 3     Fields:    Translation:HumansPHPublic Health
  32. Cradock AL, Barrett JL, Giles CM, Lee RM, Kenney EL, deBlois ME, Thayer JC, Gortmaker SL. Promoting Physical Activity With the Out of School Nutrition and Physical Activity (OSNAP) Initiative: A Cluster-Randomized Controlled Trial. JAMA Pediatr. 2016 Feb; 170(2):155-62. PMID: 26641557.
    Citations: 20     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  33. Gortmaker SL, Wang YC, Long MW, Giles CM, Ward ZJ, Barrett JL, Kenney EL, Sonneville KR, Afzal AS, Resch SC, Cradock AL. Three Interventions That Reduce Childhood Obesity Are Projected To Save More Than They Cost To Implement. Health Aff (Millwood). 2015 Nov; 34(11):1932-9. PMID: 26526252.
    Citations: 46     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  34. Schwartz MB, Henderson KE, Grode G, Hyary M, Kenney EL, O'Connell M, Middleton AE. Comparing Current Practice to Recommendations for the Child and Adult Care Food Program. Child Obes. 2015 Oct; 11(5):491-8. PMID: 26376047.
    Citations: 11     Fields:    Translation:HumansAnimalsPHPublic Health
  35. Cradock AL, Kenney EL, McHugh A, Conley L, Mozaffarian RS, Reiner JF, Gortmaker SL. Evaluating the Impact of the Healthy Beverage Executive Order for City Agencies in Boston, Massachusetts, 2011-2013. Prev Chronic Dis. 2015 Sep 10; 12:E147. PMID: 26355828.
    Citations: 9     Fields:    Translation:HumansAnimalsPHPublic Health
  36. Kenney EL, Long MW, Cradock AL, Gortmaker SL. Kenney et al. Respond. Am J Public Health. 2015 Oct; 105(10):e6-7. PMID: 26270309.
    Citations:    Fields:    
  37. Kenney EL, Gortmaker SL, Carter JE, Howe MC, Reiner JF, Cradock AL. Grab a Cup, Fill It Up! An Intervention to Promote the Convenience of Drinking Water and Increase Student Water Consumption During School Lunch. Am J Public Health. 2015 Sep; 105(9):1777-83. PMID: 26180950.
    Citations: 22     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  38. Wright DR, Kenney EL, Giles CM, Long MW, Ward ZJ, Resch SC, Moodie ML, Carter RC, Wang YC, Sacks G, Swinburn BA, Gortmaker SL, Cradock AL. Modeling the Cost Effectiveness of Child Care Policy Changes in the U.S. Am J Prev Med. 2015 Jul; 49(1):135-47. PMID: 26094234.
    Citations: 12     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  39. Kenney EL, Long MW, Cradock AL, Gortmaker SL. Prevalence of Inadequate Hydration Among US Children and Disparities by Gender and Race/Ethnicity: National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, 2009-2012. Am J Public Health. 2015 Aug; 105(8):e113-8. PMID: 26066941.
    Citations: 43     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  40. Kenney EL, Gortmaker SL, Davison KK, Bryn Austin S. The academic penalty for gaining weight: a longitudinal, change-in-change analysis of BMI and perceived academic ability in middle school students. Int J Obes (Lond). 2015 Sep; 39(9):1408-13. PMID: 25982793.
    Citations: 6     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  41. Kenney EL, Davison KK, Austin SB, Giles CM, Cradock AL, Lee RM, Gortmaker SL. Validity and reliability of a simple, low-cost measure to quantify children's dietary intake in afterschool settings. J Acad Nutr Diet. 2015 Mar; 115(3):426-432. PMID: 25596895.
    Citations: 7     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  42. Lee RM, Emmons KM, Okechukwu CA, Barrett JL, Kenney EL, Cradock AL, Giles CM, deBlois ME, Gortmaker SL. Validity of a practitioner-administered observational tool to measure physical activity, nutrition, and screen time in school-age programs. Int J Behav Nutr Phys Act. 2014 Nov 28; 11:145. PMID: 25429898.
    Citations: 5     Fields:    Translation:HumansAnimals
  43. Kenney EL, Austin SB, Cradock AL, Giles CM, Lee RM, Davison KK, Gortmaker SL. Identifying sources of children's consumption of junk food in Boston after-school programs, April-May 2011. Prev Chronic Dis. 2014 Nov 20; 11:E205. PMID: 25412028.
    Citations: 4     Fields:    Translation:HumansPHPublic Health
  44. Kenney EL, Giles CM, deBlois ME, Gortmaker SL, Chinfatt S, Cradock AL. Improving nutrition and physical activity policies in afterschool programs: results from a group-randomized controlled trial. Prev Med. 2014 Sep; 66:159-66. PMID: 24941286.
    Citations: 6     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  45. Giles CM, Kenney EL, Gortmaker SL, Lee RM, Thayer JC, Mont-Ferguson H, Cradock AL. Increasing water availability during afterschool snack: evidence, strategies, and partnerships from a group randomized trial. Am J Prev Med. 2012 Sep; 43(3 Suppl 2):S136-42. PMID: 22898163.
    Citations: 31     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  46. Falbe J, Kenney EL, Henderson KE, Schwartz MB. The Wellness Child Care Assessment Tool: a measure to assess the quality of written nutrition and physical activity policies. J Am Diet Assoc. 2011 Dec; 111(12):1852-60. PMID: 22117661.
    Citations: 10     Fields:    Translation:Humans
  47. Henderson KE, Grode GM, Middleton AE, Kenney EL, Falbe J, Schwartz MB. Validity of a measure to assess the child-care nutrition and physical activity environment. J Am Diet Assoc. 2011 Sep; 111(9):1306-13. PMID: 21872693.
    Citations: 21     Fields:    Translation:Humans
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Funded by the NIH National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences through its Clinical and Translational Science Awards Program, grant number UL1TR002541.