Effects of information about fat content on food preferences in pre-adolescent children

Dianne Engell, Peter Bordi, Marianne Borja, Carolyn Lambert, Barbara Rolls

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

39 Scopus citations

Abstract

The acceptance and sensory characteristics of standard and reduced-fat cookies were evaluated either with or without fat-content information by pre-adolescent children. Results indicate that acceptance ratings were not affected by the fat content or information about fat content when evaluated on nine-point scales. However, when asked to choose which cookie they liked better and to predict how many cookies they would eat (in forced-choice questions), fat content and information about fat content had a significant effect on cookie preference and prospective intake. When no information was available, subjects preferred the cookie with the higher fat content; when information was presented, subjects' preference shifted to the reduced-fat cookie. When asked which cookie they would choose to eat for dessert with hypothetical lunches, a similar shift in choice was observed following a low-fat lunch. The low-fat label was also associated with an increase in perceived healthiness relative to the high-fat label, as indicated on 'good for me' scales. The effects of fat content information on cookie preference and prospective consumption were seen in pre-adolescents who indicated a 'high concern' for the health consequences of dietary fat. Cookie preference and prospective intake of subjects who indicated a 'low concern' were not affected by fat content labeling. Results suggest that fat content and information about fat content may affect food preference and intake in pre-adolescent children.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)269-282
Number of pages14
JournalAppetite
Volume30
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 1998

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All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Psychology(all)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics

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