Trait mindfulness has a greater influence on food choice than food logo primes

Farrar, S. and Tapper, K. (2022) Trait mindfulness has a greater influence on food choice than food logo primes. Appetite, 169, 105573. (doi: 10.1016/j.appet.2021.105573)

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Excessive consumption of foods that are high in sugar and saturated fats can have a detrimental effect on both physical and mental health. Therefore, it is important to determine whether exposure to unhealthy food primes in the environment increases the selection of these foods. The main aims of this pre-registered study were to determine (1) whether exposure to unhealthy food primes would increase the selection of unhealthy foods; and (2) whether any priming effects would be moderated by trait mindfulness. A total of 158 female participants were randomly allocated to either a prime or control condition, where both involved distinguishing between an original and a modified version of well-known brand logos. The prime condition contained six unhealthy food-related logos whereas the control condition contained no food-related logos. Participants were subsequently asked to select five foods from a list of 12 healthy and 12 unhealthy food items for a supposed taste test, before completing the Five-Facet Mindfulness Questionnaire – Short Form. The results showed that the number of unhealthy foods selected did not differ between the conditions. Although trait mindfulness did not act as a moderating variable, participants higher in trait mindfulness selected significantly fewer unhealthy foods. In conclusion, unhealthy food-related logos had no effect on the selection on unhealthy food items, although the effect of trait mindfulness on food choice warrants further investigation.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Farrar, Dr Stephanie
Authors: Farrar, S., and Tapper, K.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Psychology & Neuroscience
Journal Name:Appetite
ISSN (Online):1095-8304
Published Online:10 September 2022

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