Carolyn Dunn

Carolyn Dunn

PhD, RD Professor and Department Head 919-515-9142 Website

Areas of Expertise

  • Overweight and obesity prevention
  • Nutrition for children
  • Physical activity
  • Policy and environmental change


Dr. Dunn is a professor and head for the Department Youth, Family, and Community Sciences, NC State University. She provides program expertise and state-wide leadership for nutrition and wellness for families and communities. She has 25+ years of experience in nutrition education and develops nutrition education materials that are used across the country to help people eat smart and move more. Carolyn is the author/developer for numerous programs and tools that address healthy eating and physical activity. She is the lead author of the award winning Color Me Healthy, a curriculum that helps young children eat smart and move more. She and colleagues created Eat Smart, Move More, Weigh Less, a 15-week evidence-based weight management program that is being used across the country in both in-person and online formats.

She is the author of Nutrition Decisions and introductory nutrition textbook published by Jones and Bartlett. Dr. Dunn and colleagues have published their work in the American Journal of Health Promotion, Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior and others. She is the past chair of Eat Smart, Move More North Carolina, a 90-agency coalition that promotes increased opportunities for healthy eating and physical activity wherever people live, learn, earn, play and pray. She is a member of Sigma Xi the scientific research society and the Academy for Outstanding Faculty Engaged in Extension.

Dr. Dunn earned her BS in nutrition at Meredith College and her MS and PhD in nutrition from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. She is a life long fitness advocate and enjoys running, weight training, and yoga. She has a passion for cooking, food, travel, art, and design.

Programs and Initiatives

  • Eat Smart, Move More, North Carolina
  • Eat Smart, Move More, Weigh Less
  • Cook Smart, Eat Smart
  • Faithful Families
  • Color Me Healthy

Selected Publications

  • Kretser A, Dunn C, DeVirgiliis R, Levine K. Utility of a New Food Value Analysis Application to Evaluate Trade-Offs When Making Food Selections. Nutrition Today. IN PRESS.
  • Dunn C, Whetstone LM, Kolasa KM, Jayaratne KSU, Thomas C, Aggarwal S, Nordby K, Riley K. Using synchronous distance education technology to deliver a weight management intervention. Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior. IN PRESS.
  • Muth MK, Duffey K, Dunn C, Jensen H, Gregory C. A web-based food value analysis application to compare foods at different levels of processing. Nutrition Today. IN PRESS
  • Rhew L, Thomas C, Peach K, Dunn C, Newkirk J, Ward D, Vaughn A. Move More Scholars Institute In: Pate R, Buchner D. Implementing Physical Activity Strategies. Champaign, ILL: Human Kinetics. 2014. (link)
  • Dunn C, Whetstone LM, Kolasa KM, Jayaratne KSU, Thomas C, Aggarwal S, Herget C, Rogers AB. Delivering a behavior-change weight management program to teachers and state employees in North Carolina. American Journal of Health Promotion. 2013;27(6):378-383 (link)
  • Dunn C, Kolasa K. Development of a movement and state plan for obesity prevention, Eat Smart, Move More North Carolina. Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior. 2013;45(6):690-695. (link)
  • Zoellner JM, Hill J, Grier K, Chau C, Kopec D, Price B, Dunn C. Better Together Healthy Caswell County: Findings from a randomized controlled trial targeting obesity-related behaviors. Preventing Chronic Disease. 2013;10:120296. DOI: (link)
  • Dunn, C. Nutrition Decisions: Eat Smart Move More. Sudbury, MA: Jones and Bartlett Publishers; 2012. (link)
  • Witt KE & Dunn C. Increasing fruit and vegetable consumption among preschoolers: Evaluation of Color Me Healthy. Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior. 2012;444(2):107-113 (link)
  • Dunn C, Kolasa KM, Vodicka S, Schneider L, Thomas C, Smith C, Lackey C. Eat Smart, Move More, Weigh Less a weight management program for adults – revision of curriculum based on first year pilot. Journal of Extension. 2011;49(6):6TOT9 (link)
  • Young S, Halladay J, Plescia M, Herget C, Dunn C. Establishing worksite wellness programs for North Carolina government employees, 2008. Preventing Chronic Disease. 2011;8(2):A48 (link)

Contributing Websites

Contact Information

Youth, Family, and Community Sciences
NC State University
512 Brickhaven Drive 240A
Campus Box 7606
Raleigh, NC 27695-7606