Taste and Health Information on Fast Food Menus to Encourage Young Adults to Choose Healthy Food Products: An Experimental Study

Frans Folkvord*, Maud van der Zanden, Sara Pabian

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


Currently, a great number of people have an unhealthy dietary intake, leading to chronic diseases. Despite the high prevalence of obesity and people being overweight, only a few strategies to promote healthier food products have been proven effective. Therefore, the objective of this study was to test the effect of the presence of health information and its integration into a fast food menu context on young adults' healthy food choices. An experimental between-subjects design consisting of three conditions-subtle, explicit, and no health information-was conducted among 142 participants aged 18 to 24 (M-age: 21.49, SD = 1.77). The results showed that when health information about healthy products was provided, the level of integration of the information into the menu context had an effect. More specifically, participants exposed to explicit health information about healthy products provided on the fast food menu were more likely to choose a healthy food product compared to participants exposed to subtle integrated health information. No interaction effect for moderating factors was found. In line with the healthy food promotion model, the findings suggest that the provision of explicit health information on healthy products stimulates healthy food choices in a fast food environment.

Original languageEnglish
Article number7139
Number of pages13
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Issue number19
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2020


  • young adults
  • healthy food choice
  • menu information
  • fast food restaurants

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