Dr. Grivetti's research blends classical approaches of social and biological sciences with historical perspectives. The unifying theme of his research is how and under what conditions human diets change, the mechanisms of change, and the nutritional implications of human behavior.
Dr. Grivetti's research has taken two sub-themes:
- History, origin, and maintenance of safe, nutritionally sound diets: Such work has included identification and nutrient analysis of edible wild plants in Greece and Swaziland and species consumed during famine in the Sahel of Western Africa; religious determinants of human diet; food-use patterns during and after World War II evidenced by Eastern European, Mediterranean, and Southeast Asian societies; and food patterns and food safety in post-war Vietnam.
- Cultural-ethnic diet and nutritional status: such work has included changes associated with rural to urban migration in Greece; food patterns and access to health care by Native Americans; nutritional consequences associated with dietary changes associated with first-, second-, and third-generation immigrants to California, especially Asians, Hispanics, and Mediterraneans.
Dr. Grivetti is also the compiler of the University of California, Davis Olympic Centennial Athletic, Sport, Recreation Bibliography Project and the creator of America the Bountiful: Classic American Food from Antiquity to the Space Age, an exhibit of the history of American food, currently showing at the University of California, Davis Shields Library.