CHIVES Research Program

Improving diets through increased fruit and vegetable consumption significantly reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD). Programs increasing the accessibility and affordability of healthy food among low-income Americans have been hindered by the food consumption cycle associated with poverty: the tendency to over-consume calories shortly after receiving funds at the beginning of each month, draining the budget for fresh produce purchases, or for all food purchases, by month’s end. Increasing food assistance funding alone does not resolve this problem, but an emerging theory about dietary behavior suggests that providing funds for food in smaller installments distributed throughout the month will smooth the consumption cycle and improve healthy eating—counteracting the tendency to respond to lump sum, once-monthly funding installments by purchasing calorie-dense foods immediately after funds are received.

CHIVES (Coupons for Healthy Intake using Variable Economic Strategies), a 5-year NIH-funded research study led by Dr. Sanjay Basu of Stanford University and Dr. Hilary Seligman of UCSF, is testing this emerging theory about dietary behavior through a partnership with the EatSF and Vouchers4Veggies voucher programs. CHIVES is looking at how vouchers for vegetables and fruits are used differently in San Francisco versus in Los Angeles, and how providing vouchers for vegetables and fruits may affect consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages.

CHIVES is enrolling participants through January 2019!

Participants are eligible to receive $20 of CHIVES vouchers for vegetables and fruits per month for 6 months if they:

  • Are at least 21 years old;
  • Have regular access to a phone;
  • Live in San Francisco (in any zip code) or Los Angeles (in 90057, 90017, or 90071 zip codes) and plan to continue living there for the next 6 months;
  • Have an income of ≤ 250% Federal Poverty Level; see if you meet income guidelines here;
  • Are not pregnant;
  • Do not have cancer or heart failure;
  • Feel comfortable with surveys in English;
  • Are not in another study of nutrition or diet;
  • Are not already receiving EatSF or Vouchers4Veggies vouchers.

Want more info?

If you would like to know more or are interested in participating, please take a 5-minute survey to see if you qualify:

– San Francisco participants:
– Los Angeles participants:

For general questions, please call +1 (844) 424-4837, or Email

Participant rights questions? Please call (866) 680-2906.

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Vouchers 4 Veggies in Los Angeles

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