Tempting foods and the affordability axiom: Food cues change beliefs about the costs of healthy eating

Sarah E. Hill, Kaily Baskett, Hannah K. Bradshaw, Marjorie L. Prokosch, Danielle J. DelPriore, Christopher D. Rodeheffer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Scopus citations


Many consumers report that healthy eating is more expensive than unhealthy eating (the affordability axiom). We hypothesize that endorsement of this belief may be driven by the motivation to eat unhealthy foods. We tested this hypothesis in three studies. Study 1 revealed that the affordability axiom is associated with poorer eating habits and higher Body Mass Index (BMI). Study 2 found that the presence of a tasty food cue in the environment increased endorsement of affordability axiom. Study 3 found that these effects were moderated by one's food intake goals. Food cues led non-dieters to increase endorsement of the affordability axiom, but had the opposite effect among those seeking to restrict their calorie intake. The affordability axiom might persist as a means of validating unhealthy food choices.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)274-279
Number of pages6
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1 2016


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Psychology(all)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics

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