Food Choice in Indian Households in the Context of the Nutrition Transition


The goal of this project is to quantify aspects of women’s and men’s food choices relevant for addressing the dual burden of malnutrition in India through data collection and analysis based in Vijayapura, a remote district in Southern India that globalization is just reaching. The objectives are to: 1) Quantify the importance of factors including price, satiety, taste, reputation, and subsidies as proximate drivers of food choice in the context of globalizing food markets; 2) Identify the conditions under which women and men select global vs. traditional foods, and how variations in these conditions can alter selections; 3) Assess the role of the public distribution system (PDS) as a driver of food choices and its implications for intake and for advancing nutrition transition. In a representative sample of 324 urban and rural households, we will conduct interviews with women, men, and youths. Data instruments will include experimental methods to elicit drivers of food choice in different scenarios and to valuate PDS bundles and a food frequency questionnaire to measure intake and nutrition transition. We will use quantitative and qualitative methods to explore gender differences and communication relating to food choices and food intake.

Lead Institution

  • Emory University

Collaborating Institutions

  • BLDE University
  • University of Southern California

Principal Investigator(s)

  • Solveig A. Cunningham, PhD, MSc, Associate Professor, Rollins School of Public Health, Emory University


  • Ashlesha Datar, PhD, Senior Economist, University of Southern California
  • Shailaja S. Patil, MD, Professor in the Department of Community Medicine, Sri B. M. Patil Medical College, BLDE University
  • Nida I. Shaikh, PhD, RD, Assistant Professor, Georgia State University

Journal Publications

Posters & Presentations


Research Brief


Open Access Data