Iowa State University to provide research expertise to National Resource Center on Nutrition and Aging

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Iowa State researcher is part of partnership with the Iowa Department on Aging

Iowa State University researchers will play a crucial part in a $4.9 million grant for the National Resource Center on Nutrition and Aging (NRCNA). The Iowa Department on Aging (IDA) was awarded host of the Center in a cooperative agreement with the Administration for Community Living (ACL), in which Iowa State will provide research expertise, evaluations and subject matter experts.

Sarah L. Francis, associate professor and Human Sciences Extension and Outreach state specialist of nutrition and wellness, at Iowa State.

Leading these efforts will be the Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition’s Dr. Sarah L. Francis, associate professor and Human Sciences Extension and Outreach state specialist of nutrition and wellness, at Iowa State.

“I am very excited to continue collaborating with the IDA,” Francis said. “Through the Resource Center, we will be able to ensure that those serving older Americans are provided with research-based recommendations and strategies. Doing so will ensure older Americans have the tools and resources necessary to remain healthy, strong, and independent.”

The Resource Center supports the national aging network, ACL Innovation in Nutrition grantees and other outreach programs by strengthening and building senior nutrition programs. Across the country, senior nutrition programs work to reduce food insecurity, hunger and malnutrition, while enhancing socialization and promoting the health and well-being of older adults. Francis’ research and evaluation efforts will evaluate ongoing and future initiatives and programs, as well as provide critical feedback in ensuring that providers have the proper training and education when working with older Americans. Additionally, Francis’ research will inform the Center’s website content and design, identify continuing education opportunities and guide the Center’s resource development process. 

“We are excited for this partnership with Iowa State University to support the nationwide nutrition and aging network for research, assessment and evaluation,” said Alexandra Bauman, Director of Nutrition & Wellness, Iowa Department on Aging. “We have a successful working history with the University and Dr. [Francis] on evaluating Older Americans Act (OAA) nutrition programs. This will build upon our work to innovate and expand senior nutrition programs.”

The NRCNA serves to research and evaluate senior nutrition programs in the U.S. that are funded and administered under the OAA. Funded by the ACL, the Center builds the capacity of these programs by providing high-quality human centered services and identifies issues and opportunities to enhance sustainability and resiliency.