Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Guiltless gluttony: Misleading size labels lead to overeating

Date:
December 1, 2010
Source:
University of Chicago Press Journals
Summary:
People are easily fooled when it comes to food labels, and will eat more of something if they believe it's a "small" portion, according to a new study.

People are easily fooled when it comes to food labels, and will eat more of something if they believe it's a "small" portion, according to a new study in the Journal of Consumer Research.

Authors Nilufer Z. Ayinoglu (Koç University, Istanbul) and Aradhna Krishna (University of Michigan) found that inconsistent portion sizes contribute to people's uncertainty about the appropriate amount to eat. "In this context of large portion sizes and consumer uncertainty about appropriate food intake, we show that size labels chosen by food and drink vendors (such as 'small-medium-large') can have a major impact on consumers' purchase and consumption behavior," the authors write. "As such, food providers' choice of size labels has many potential legislative and liability-related implications."

The researchers conducted five studies that included actual food consumption. They demonstrated that the use of different size labels for the same product affects the amount people consume.

When people consumed a large item that was labeled "small," they felt less guilty; the authors call this effect "guiltless gluttony." "An implication of our results is that consumers can continue to eat large sizes that are labeled as smaller and feel that they have not consumed too much. This can result in unintended and uninformed over-consumption, which is clearly ridden with significant health ramifications, and size labels could be contributing to the rampant obesity problems in the United States."

The authors found that the biasing effect of size labels was most pronounced when people's concern about accurate nutrition intake was not high and when people's ability to process was limited -- in other words, situations not unlike everyday life.

"Stricter size labeling laws and more vigilant monitoring of marketers' use of size labels may be needed, especially considering the limited cognitive resources available to consumers for routine food choice and consumption behavior during their other everyday endeavors," the authors conclude.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Chicago Press Journals. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Nilufer Ayinoglu and Aradhna Krishna. Guiltless Gluttony: The Asymmetric Effect of Size Labels on Size Perceptions and Consumption. Journal of Consumer Research, April 2011 DOI: 10.1086/657557

Cite This Page:

University of Chicago Press Journals. "Guiltless gluttony: Misleading size labels lead to overeating." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 1 December 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101115151938.htm>.
University of Chicago Press Journals. (2010, December 1). Guiltless gluttony: Misleading size labels lead to overeating. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 2, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101115151938.htm
University of Chicago Press Journals. "Guiltless gluttony: Misleading size labels lead to overeating." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101115151938.htm (accessed September 2, 2014).

Share This




More Mind & Brain News

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Can You Train Your Brain To Eat Healthy?

Can You Train Your Brain To Eat Healthy?

Newsy (Sep. 1, 2014) — New research says if you condition yourself to eat healthy foods, eventually you'll crave them instead of junk food. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Coffee Then Napping: The (New) Key To Alertness

Coffee Then Napping: The (New) Key To Alertness

Newsy (Aug. 30, 2014) — Researchers say having a cup of coffee then taking a nap is more effective than a nap or coffee alone. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Young Entrepreneurs Get $100,000, If They Quit School

Young Entrepreneurs Get $100,000, If They Quit School

AFP (Aug. 29, 2014) — Twenty college-age students are getting 100,000 dollars from a Silicon Valley leader and a chance to live in San Francisco in order to work on the start-up project of their dreams, but they have to quit school first. Duration: 02:20 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Baby Babbling Might Lead To Faster Language Development

Baby Babbling Might Lead To Faster Language Development

Newsy (Aug. 29, 2014) — A new study suggests babies develop language skills more quickly if their parents imitate the babies' sounds and expressions and talk to them often. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins