Consumer beliefs about healthy foods and diets


Autoři: Jayson L. Lusk aff001
Působiště autorů: Department of Agricultural Economics, Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana, United States of America aff001
Vyšlo v časopise: PLoS ONE 14(10)
Kategorie: Research Article
doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0223098

Souhrn

Background

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has begun a public process to redefine how companies are allowed to use the term “healthy” on food packages. Although the definition is formulated based on the latest consensus in nutrition and epidemiological research, it is also important to understand how consumers define and understand the term if it is to be behaviorally relevant. This research is an exploratory study designed to provide a descriptive account of consumers’ perceptions of and beliefs about the meaning of “healthy” food.

Methods

A nationwide U.S. sample of 1,290 food consumers was surveyed in December 2018. Respondents answered 15 questions designed to gauge perceptions of healthy food and to elicit preference for policies surrounding healthy food definitions. Responses are weighted to demographically match the population. Categorical variables have a sampling error of ±2.7%. Exploratory factor analysis is used to determine latent dimensions of health perceptions related to food type.

Results

Consumers were about evenly split on whether a food can be deemed healthy based solely on the foods’ nutritional content (52.1% believing as such) or whether there were other factors that affect whether a food is healthy (47.9% believing as such). Consumers were also about evenly split on whether an individual food can be considered healthy (believed by 47.9%) or whether this healthiness is instead a characteristic of one’s overall diet (believed by 52.1%). Ratings of individual food products revealed that “healthy” perceptions are comprised of at least three underlying latent dimensions related to animal origin, preservation, and freshness/processing. Focusing on individual macronutrients, perceived healthiness was generally decreasing in a food’s fat, sodium, and carbohydrate content and increasing in protein content. About 40% of consumers thought a healthy label implied they should increase consumption of the type of food bearing the label and about 15% thought the label meant they could eat all they wanted.

Conclusions

Results suggest consumer’s perceptions of “healthy,” which is primarily based on fat content, partially aligns with the FDA definition but also suggest consumers perceive the word as a broader and more nuanced concept that defies easy, uniform definition. Results highlight areas where nutrition education may be needed and suggest disclosures may need to accompany health claims so that consumers know what, precisely, is being communicated.

Klíčová slova:

Carbohydrates – Diet – Fats – Food – Food consumption – Health informatics – Nutrients – Nutrition


Zdroje

1. Lusk J.L. “Consumer Information and Labeling.” in US Programs Affecting Food and Agricultural Marketing. Armbruster W.J.and Knutson R.D.(eds). New York: Springer Science + Business Media, 2012.

2. Schuldt J.P. and Schwarz N., 2010. “The “organic” path to obesity? Organic claims influence calorie judgments and exercise recommendations.” Judgment and Decision Making, 5(3), 144–150.

3. Syrengelas K.G., DeLong K.L., Grebitus C. and Nayga R.M. Jr, 2017. Is the natural label misleading? Examining consumer preferences for natural beef. Applied Economic Perspectives and Policy, 40(3), pp.445–460.

4. Drichoutis A.C., Lazaridis P. and Nayga R.M. Jr, 2006. Consumers' use of nutritional labels: a review of research studies and issues. Academy of Marketing Science Review. 10(9), pp1–15.

5. Kiesel K., McCluskey J.J. and Villas-Boas S.B., 2011. Nutritional labeling and consumer choices. Annual Review of Resource Economics, 3(1), pp.141–158.

6. Williams P., 2005. Consumer understanding and use of health claims for foods. Nutrition Reviews, 63(7), 256–264. doi: 10.1111/j.1753-4887.2005.tb00382.x 16121480

7. Ellison B., Lusk J.L. and Davis D., 2013. Looking at the label and beyond: the effects of calorie labels, health consciousness, and demographics on caloric intake in restaurants. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, 10(1), p.21.

8. Ellison B., Lusk J.L. and Davis D., 2014. The impact of restaurant calorie labels on food choice: results from a field experiment. Economic Inquiry, 52(2), pp.666–681.

9. Sinclair S.E., Cooper M. and Mansfield E.D., 2014. The influence of menu labeling on calories selected or consumed: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, 114(9), pp.1375–1388. doi: 10.1016/j.jand.2014.05.014 25037558

10. Garretson J.A. and Burton S., 2000. Effects of nutrition facts panel values, nutrition claims, and health claims on consumer attitudes, perceptions of disease-related risks, and trust. Journal of Public Policy & Marketing, 19(2), pp.213–227.

11. Teisl M.F., Bockstael N.E. and Levy A., 2001. Measuring the welfare effects of nutrition information. American Journal of Agricultural Economics, 83(1), pp.133–149.

12. Julia C., Blanchet O., Méjean C., Péneau S., Ducrot P., Allès B., et al., 2016. Impact of the front-of-pack 5-colour nutrition label (5-CNL) on the nutritional quality of purchases: an experimental study. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, 13(1), p.101. doi: 10.1186/s12966-016-0416-4 27645372

13. Vyth E.L., Steenhuis I.H., Roodenburg A.J., Brug J. and Seidell J.C., 2010. Front-of-pack nutrition label stimulates healthier product development: a quantitative analysis. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, 7(1), p.65.

14. Hersey J.C., Wohlgenant K.C., Arsenault J.E., Kosa K.M. and Muth M.K., 2013. Effects of front-of-package and shelf nutrition labeling systems on consumers. Nutrition reviews, 71(1), pp.1–14. doi: 10.1111/nure.12000 23282247

15. Jo J., Lusk J.L., Muller L. and Ruffieux B., 2016. Value of parsimonious nutritional information in a framed field experiment. Food Policy, 63, pp.124–133.

16. Scarborough P., Matthews A., Eyles H., Kaur A., Hodgkins C., Raats M.M., et al., 2015. Reds are more important than greens: how UK supermarket shoppers use the different information on a traffic light nutrition label in a choice experiment. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, 12(1), p.151.

17. Talati Z., Norman R., Pettigrew S., Neal B., Kelly B., Dixon H., et al., 2017. The impact of interpretive and reductive front-of-pack labels on food choice and willingness to pay. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, 14(1), p.171. doi: 10.1186/s12966-017-0628-2 29258543

18. Zhu C., Lopez R.A. and Liu X., 2015. Information cost and consumer choices of healthy foods. American Journal of Agricultural Economics, 98(1), pp.41–53.

19. Seyedhamzeh S., Bagheri M., Keshtkar A.A., Qorbani M. and Viera A.J., 2018. Physical activity equivalent labeling vs. calorie labeling: a systematic review and meta-analysis. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, 15(1), p.88. doi: 10.1186/s12966-018-0720-2 30217210

20. Gracia A., Loureiro M. and Nayga R.M. Jr, 2007. Do consumers perceive benefits from the implementation of a EU mandatory nutritional labelling program?. Food Policy, 32(2), pp.160–174.

21. Wansink B. and Chandon P., 2006. Can “low-fat” nutrition labels lead to obesity?. Journal of Marketing Research, 43(4), pp.605–617.

22. Kiesel K. and Villas-Boas S.B., 2013. Can information costs affect consumer choice? Nutritional labels in a supermarket experiment. International Journal of Industrial Organization, 31(2), pp.153–163.

23. Bialkova S., Sasse L. and Fenko A., 2016. The role of nutrition labels and advertising claims in altering consumers' evaluation and choice. Appetite, 96, pp.38–46. doi: 10.1016/j.appet.2015.08.030 26341955

24. Wong C.L., Mendoza J., Henson S.J., Qi Y., Lou W. and L'abbé M.R., 2014. Consumer attitudes and understanding of cholesterol-lowering claims on food: randomize mock-package experiments with plant sterol and oat fibre claims. European journal of clinical nutrition, 68(8), p.946. doi: 10.1038/ejcn.2014.107 24918122

25. Jo J. and Lusk J.L., 2018. If it’s healthy, it’s tasty and expensive: Effects of nutritional labels on price and taste expectations. Food Quality and Preference, 68, pp.332–341.

26. Waterlander W.E., Steenhuis I.H., de Boer M.R., Schuit A.J. and Seidell J.C., 2013. Effects of different discount levels on healthy products coupled with a healthy choice label, special offer label or both: results from a web-based supermarket experiment. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, 10(1), p.59.

27. Food and Drug Administration. 2016a. “Use of the Term “Healthy” in the Labeling of Human Food Products: Guidance for Industry.” U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Food and Drug Administration, Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, Washington D.C. September 2016. Available online at: https://www.fda.gov/media/100520/download

28. Food and Drug Administration. Proposed Rule. “Use of the Term ‘‘Healthy” in the Labeling of Human Food Products; Request for Information and Comments.” Federal Register 81:66562–66565. September 28, 2016b. Available online at: https://www.regulations.gov/document?D=FDA-2016-D-2335-0001

29. Food and Drug Administration. 2018. “Part 101 –Food Labeling, Subpart D—Specific Requirements for Nutrient Content Claims.” Code of Federal Regulation. Title 21, Volume 2, Chapter 1, Subchapter B, Part 101, Subpart D. 21CFR101.65. April 1, 2018. Available online at: https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/cdrh/cfdocs/cfcfr/cfrsearch.cfm?fr=101.65

30. American Dietetics Association., 1993. Food labeling: Definition of the term ‘healthy.’ Journal of the American Dietetic Association, 93, 404. 8343197

31. Slovic P., 1987. Perception of risk. Science, 236(4799), pp.280–285. doi: 10.1126/science.3563507 3563507

32. Salanié F. and Treich N., 2009. Regulation in happyville. Economic Journal, 119(537), pp.665–679.

33. Kahan D.M., Peters E., Wittlin M., Slovic P., Ouellette L.L., Braman D., et al., 2012. The polarizing impact of science literacy and numeracy on perceived climate change risks. Nature Climate Change, 2(10), p.732–735.

34. Jones M.S., House L.A. and Gao Z., 2015. Respondent screening and revealed preference axioms: Testing quarantining methods for enhanced data quality in web panel surveys. Public Opinion Quarterly, 79(3), 687–709.

35. Malone T. and Lusk J.L., 2018. Consequences of participant inattention with an application to carbon taxes for meat products. Ecological Economics, 145, 218–230.

36. Yeager D.S., Krosnick J.A., Chang L., Javitz H.S., Levendusky M.S., Simpser A., et al., 2011. Comparing the accuracy of RDD telephone surveys and internet surveys conducted with probability and non-probability samples. Public Opinion Quarterly, 75(4), pp.709–747.

37. Schonlau M. and Couper M.P., 2017. Options for conducting web surveys. Statistical Science, 32(2), pp.279–292.

38. Couper M.P., 2017. New developments in survey data collection. Annual Review of Sociology, 43, pp.121–145.

39. Wang W., Rothschild D., Goel S. and Gelman A., 2015. Forecasting elections with non-representative polls. International Journal of Forecasting, 31(3), pp.980–991

40. Goel, S., Obeng, A. and Rothschild, D., 2015. Non-representative surveys: Fast, cheap, and mostly accurate. Working Paper, Stanford University.

41. Rivers D. (2013). Comment. Journal of Survey Statistics and Methodology, 1, 111–117.

42. Hays R.D., Liu H. and Kapteyn A., 2015. Use of Internet panels to conduct surveys. Behavior Research Methods, 47(3), pp.685–690. doi: 10.3758/s13428-015-0617-9 26170052

43. Meyer B. D., Wallace K. C. M. and James X. S. (2015). Household surveys in crisis. Journal of Economic Perspectives 29(4): 1–29.


Článek vyšel v časopise

PLOS One


2019 Číslo 10