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Susan L. Johnson, PhD

Professor of Pediatrics


Doctoral Degree

  • Nutritional Science, University of Illinois, 1993


  • Center for Human Nutrition, University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, 1994-1996

Dr. Johnson has published extensively on nutrition issues including maternal feeding behaviors, obesity, child feeding, studies regarding ethnic differences (NonHispanic White and Hispanic) in infant and child obesity and self regulation, as well as a recent comparison of nutritional intake differences in ASD and typically developing children. Grant support includes feeding practices of child care professionals and effects of energy state on to visual and taste stimuli, and an Autism Speaks grant to investigate nutrient and food intake pattern in young children ASD compared to children with other neurocognitive impairments and typically developing children. Dr. Johnson serves as the Nutrition Discipline Director for the JFK LEND Grant.

Dr. Johnson is the principal investigator for multiple interdisciplinary projects including the National Children’s Study.

  • Associate Editor, The Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior, 2008-present
  • UCHSC Graduate School Dean’s Mentoring Award, 2007
  • Who’s Who in Medical Sciences Education, 2004
  • Ruth Bowling Award for Excellence in Nutrition Education, 2001
  • University of Idaho Margaret Richie Distinguished Speaker Award, 2001
  • NIH Post-doctoral Fellow, 1993-1995
  • NIH Pre-doctoral Fellow, 1988-1991
  • Brannon EE, Kuhl ES, Boles RE, Aylward BS, Ratcliff MB, Valenzuela JM, Johnson SL, Powers SW. Strategies for Recruitment and Retention of Families from Low-Income, Ethnic Minority Backgrounds in a Longitudinal Study of Caregiver Feeding and Child Weight. Child Health Care. 2013;42(3):198-213. [PMID: 24078763]
  • Clark L, Johnson SL, O'Connor ME, Lassetter J. Cultural aspects of Latino early childhood obesity. In: Beck CT, editor. Routledge international handbook of qualitative nursing research. Oxon: Routledge; 2013.
  • Hodges EA, Johnson SL, Hughes SO, Hopkinson JM, Butte NF, Fisher JO. Development of the responsiveness to child feeding cues scale. Appetite. 2013 Jun;65:210-9. [PMID: 23419965]
  • Thomas EA, Bechtell JL, Vestal BE, Johnson SL, Bessesen DH, Tregellas JR, Cornier MA. Eating-related behaviors and appetite during energy imbalance in obese-prone and obese-resistant individuals. Appetite. 2013 Jun;65:96-102. [PMID: 23402714]
  • Vazir S, Engle P, Balakrishna N, Griffiths PL, Johnson SL, Creed-Kanashiro H, Fernandez Rao S, Shroff MR, Bentley ME. Cluster-randomized trial on complementary and responsive feeding education to caregivers found improved dietary intake, growth and development among rural Indian toddlers. Matern Child Nutr. 2013 Jan;9(1 ):99-117. [PMID: 22625182]
  • Drewnowski A, Mennella JA, Johnson SL, Bellisle F. Sweetness and Food Preference. J Nutr. 2012 Jun;142(6):1142S-8S. [PMID: 22573785]
  • Faith MS, Pietrobelli A, Heo M, Johnson SL, Keller KL, Heymsfield SB, Allison DB. A twin study of self-regulatory eating in early childhood: estimates of genetic and environmental influence, and measurement considerations. Int J Obes (Lond). 2012 Jan 17. [PMID: 22249227]
  • Johnson SL. Designing messages to promote healthy foods. J Nutr Educ Behav. 2012 Nov-2012 Dec 31;44(6):473. [PMID: 23140561]
  • Ramsay SA, Branen LJ, Johnson SL. How much is enough? Tablespoon per year of age approach meets nutrient needs for children. Appetite. 2012 Feb;58(1):163-7. [PMID: 22005182]
  • Reynolds A, Krebs NF, Stewart PA, Austin H, Johnson SL, Withrow N, Molloy C, James SJ, Johnson C, Clemons T, Schmidt B, Hyman SL. Iron status in children with autism spectrum disorder. Pediatrics. 2012 Nov;130 Suppl 2:S154-9. [PMID: 23118246]
  • Young BE, Johnson SL, Krebs NF. Biological determinants linking infant weight gain and child obesity: current knowledge and future directions. Adv Nutr. 2012 ;3(5):675-86. [PMID: 22983846]
  • Chika S, Shultz JA, Johnson SL, Branen LJ, Fletcher JW. Attitudes, concerns, and likelihood for action related to young children's overweight among early childhood program staff. Fam Community Health. 2011 Oct-Dec;34(4):291-300. [PMID: 21881416]
  • Burger KS, Cornier MA, Ingebrigtsen J, Johnson SL. Assessing food appeal and desire to eat: the effects of portion size & energy density. Int J Behav Nutr Phys Act. 2011 Sep 25;8:101. [PMID: 21943082]
  • Sigman-Grant M, Christiansen E, Fernandez G, Fletcher J, Johnson SL, Branen L, Price BA. Child care provider training and a supportive feeding environment in child care settings in 4 states, 2003. Prev Chronic Dis. 2011 Sep;8(5):A113. [PMID: 21843416]
  • Disantis K, Hodges EA, Johnson SL, Fisher JO. The role of responsive feeding in overweight during infancy and toddlerhood: a systematic review. Int J Obes (Lond). 2011 Apr;35(4):480-492. [PMID: 21427696]
  • Clark L, Bunik M, Johnson SL. Research opportunities with curanderos to address childhood overweight in Latino families. Qual Health Res. 2010 Jan;20(1):4-14. [PMID: 19933354]
  • Ross ES, Krebs NF, Shroyer AL, Dickinson LM, Barrett PH, Johnson SL. Early growth faltering in healthy term infants predicts longitudinal growth. Early Hum Dev. 2009 Sep;85(9):583-8. [PMID: 19608359]
  • Johnson SL, Clark L, Goree K, O'Connor M, Zimmer LM. Healthcare providers' perceptions of the factors contributing to infant obesity in a low-income Mexican American community. J Spec Pediatr Nurs. 2008 Jul;13(3):180-90. [PMID: 18638048]
  • Donahoo W, Wyatt HR, Kriehn J, Stuht J, Dong F, Hosokawa P, Grunwald GK, Johnson SL, Peters JC, Hill JO. Dietary fat increases energy intake across the range of typical consumption in the United States. Obesity (Silver Spring). 2008 Jan;16(1):64-9. [PMID: 18223614]
  • Donnelly JE, Sullivan DK, Smith BK, Jacobsen DJ, Washburn RA, Johnson SL, Hill JO, Mayo MS, Spaeth KR, Gibson C. Alteration of dietary fat intake to prevent weight gain: Jayhawk Observed Eating Trial. Obesity (Silver Spring). 2008 Jan;16(1):107-12. [PMID: 18223621]
  • Johnson SL, Taylor-Holloway LA. Non-Hispanic white and Hispanic elementary school children's self-regulation of energy intake. Am J Clin Nutr. 2006 Jun;83(6):1276-82. [PMID: 16762937]
  • Cornier MA, Grunwald GK, Johnson SL, Bessesen DH. Effects of short-term overfeeding on hunger, satiety, and energy intake in thin and reduced-obese individuals. Appetite. 2004 Dec;43(3):253-9 . [PMID: 15527927]
  • Grunwald GK, Sullivan DK, Hise M, Donnelly JE, Jacobsen DJ, Johnson SL, Hill JO. Number of days, number of subjects, and sources of variation in longitudinal intervention or crossover feeding trials with multiple days of measurement. Br J Nutr. 2003 Dec;90(6):1087-95. [PMID: 14641968]
  • Donnelly JE, Kirk EP, Jacobsen DJ, Hill JO, Sullivan DK, Johnson SL. Effects of 16 mo of verified, supervised aerobic exercise on macronutrient intake in overweight men and women: the Midwest Exercise Trial. Am J Clin Nutr. 2003 Nov;78(5):950-6. [PMID: 14594781]
  • Donnelly JE, Hill JO, Jacobsen DJ, Potteiger J, Sullivan DK, Johnson SL, Heelan K, Hise M, Fennessey PV, Sonko B, Sharp T, Jakicic JM, Blair SN, Tran ZV, Mayo M, Gibson C, Washburn RA. Effects of a 16-month randomized controlled exercise trial on body weight and composition in young, overweight men and women: the Midwest Exercise Trial. Arch Intern Med. 2003 Jun 9;163(11):1343-50. [PMID: 12796071]
  • Melby CL, Osterberg KL, Resch A, Davy B, Johnson S, Davy K. Effect of carbohydrate ingestion during exercise on post-exercise substrate oxidation and energy intake. Int J Sport Nutr Exerc Metab. 2002 Sep;12(3):294-309. [PMID: 12432174]
  • Birch LL, Fisher JO, Grimm-Thomas K, Markey CN, Sawyer R, Johnson SL. Confirmatory factor analysis of the Child Feeding Questionnaire: a measure of parental attitudes, beliefs and practices about child feeding and obesity proneness. Appetite. 2001 Jun;36(3):201-10. [PMID: 11358344]
  • Johnson SL. Improving Preschoolers' self-regulation of energy intake. Pediatrics. 2000 Dec;106(6):1429-35. [PMID: 11099599]
  • Johnson SL, Birch LL. Parents' and children's adiposity and eating style. Pediatrics. 1994 Nov;94(5):653-61. [PMID: 7936891]
  • Birch LL, Johnson SL, Andresen G, Peters JC, Schulte MC. The variability of young children's energy intake. N Engl J Med. 1991 Jan 24;324(4):232-5. [PMID: 1985244]