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Type: Thesis
Title: Food Choices: The Influence of Physical Activity Calorie Equivalent Food Labelling
Author: Alexander, Chelsea
Issue Date: 2020
School/Discipline: School of Psychology
Abstract: The world is facing an obesity epidemic, with billions of adults overweight and millions obese. Previous interventions have predominantly focused on media campaigns and dietary guidelines rather than changes to the food environment. More recently, researchers have proposed the use of Physical Activity Calorie Equivalent (PACE) food labels as an intervention. This study aimed to examine the efficacy of PACE labels in encouraging healthier food choices. PACE labels were hypothesised to be more effective than calorie labels in doing this. A secondary aim was to explore demographic and health-related factors associated with PACE label outcomes. 321 Australian adults (18 to 68 years) completed an online survey between April and May 2020, exploring the likelihood of consuming foods presented with calorie and PACE labels. Demographic factors and measures of physical activity, exercise, diet, health literacy, and self-rated health were also analysed. A significant difference was found between the two food label groups, with participants making healthier food choices when referencing PACE labels compared to calorie labels. Overall, most participants made healthier choices when referencing PACE labels. However, some participants’ choices remained unchanged, while some indicated less healthy choices when referencing PACE labels. The perceived benefits of exercise, self-rated health, and cognitive restraint were significantly associated with PACE labels resulting in healthier food choices, while gender and cognitive restraint were associated with PACE labels resulting in less healthy choices. Findings suggest that overall Australian adults are more likely to make healthier food choices when referencing PACE labels compared to calorie labels.
Dissertation Note: Thesis (B.PsychSc(Hons)) -- University of Adelaide, School of Psychology, 2020
Keywords: Honours; Psychology
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