Innovative Models

Find out how Innovations in Nutrition Programs and Services (INNU) grantees are successfully educating seniors about nutrition using innovative and promising practices.

About INNU

The goal of the INNU program is to enhance the quality, effectiveness, and proven outcomes of nutrition services by supporting activities that can be broadly implementation throughout the aging services network.

2018 Grantees

Eskenazi Health: Meals at Home (IN)

Modernizing the home-delivered meal program through frozen meals and a web-based app

Summary: To modernize its home-delivered meal program, Eskenazi Health’s Meals at Home looked at how frozen meals were produced, stored, and delivered. They partnered with Regenstrief Institute to develop an app for seniors to order meals, offering them a choice from 19 different frozen meal options. Seniors who were at risk of food insecurity and/or malnutrition due to their health were provided with two meals a day for 30 weeks. In a post-project assessment, more than 90 percent of respondents said they would like to continue receiving the frozen meals and would recommend the program. 


Carter Burden Network: Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) Diet (NY)

Improving heart health with an evidence-based program focused on diet, education, and self-efficacy

Summary: To address high blood pressure among seniors, Carter Burden Network (CBN) partnered with the Rockefeller University Center (RU) for Clinical and Translational Science and Clinical Directors Network (CDN). The project tested whether a dietary intervention at a congregate meal site ― combined with educational, social, and behavioral interventions — could lower blood pressure. The dietary intervention used was the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet. While the DASH diet has been proven to lower blood pressure, it had not been studied in congregate meal sites for seniors who live in community dwellings. The project showed several positive outcomes, including a decrease in blood pressure among participants, and can serve as a blueprint for senior centers nationwide. 


Erie County Department of Senior Services: Modernizing the Congregate Dining Program (NY) 

Decreasing barriers and increasing choice through a flexible, technology-driven meal program

Summary: To modernize its congregate dining program, the Albany County Department for Aging and the Erie County Department of Senior Services partnered with local restaurants to give participants more flexibility in how and where they dine. Adults 60 or older could eat at any participating restaurant at a time of their choice. The study had a number of positive outcomes, including decreasing feelings of social isolation in older adults.The study also demonstrated the need for more progressive, self-driven services for older adults.


Previous Grantees

2017 Grantees

Other Resources on Innovation


Last modified on 07/28/2021

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