People who want to control their body weight often aim to regulate both energy intake (by reducing food consumption) and energy expenditure (by increasing physical activity), thus addressing both sides of the energy balance equation. Marketers have developed fitness-branded food that may lead restrained eaters (i.e., consumers who are chronically concerned about their body weight) to believe that they can achieve these two goals at the same time by consuming the food. The purpose of this research is to investigate the effects of fitness branding in food marketing (i.e., the integration of fitness into the branding of food) on consumption and physical activity in restrained (vs. unrestrained) eaters. The authors show that fitness branding increases consumption volumes for restrained eaters unless consumers view the food as dietary forbidden. Restrained eaters are also less physically active after consuming fitness-branded food, and food consumption volumes mediate this effect in restrained eaters. Fitness branding may therefore have undesirable effects on the weight-control behaviors of restrained eaters because it discourages physical activity despite an increase in consumption, which is contrary to the principle of energy balance.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Business and International Management
- Economics and Econometrics