The effect of the spatial positioning of a healthy food cue on food choice from a pictorial-style menu

Ella Keegan, Eva Kemps, Ivanka Prichard, J. Polivy, C. Peter Herman, Marika Tiggemann

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

The present study aimed to investigate the effect of the spatial positioning of a healthy food cue in the context of unhealthy food cues on subsequent food choice. Undergraduate women (N = 143) were asked to choose a food from a pictorial-style menu that presented a salad and three unhealthier food options in a horizontal line. The position of the salad was manipulated to be presented either (a) in the middle, (b) at the end, or (c) separated by 5 cm to the right of the line of unhealthier food options. Participants also completed a questionnaire measure of dietary restraint. Participants were significantly more likely to choose the salad when it was presented separately rather than in the middle of the unhealthier food options. This effect was not moderated by dietary restraint. The findings point to the possibility of designing pictorial menus in fast-food outlets in such a way as to subtly nudge people towards making healthier food choices.

Original languageEnglish
Article number101313
JournalEating Behaviors
Volume34
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2019

Keywords

  • Dietary restraint
  • Food choice
  • Food cues
  • Nudging
  • Spatial positioning

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