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Psychol Sci. 2010 May;21(5):619-22. doi: 10.1177/0956797610366090. Epub 2010 Mar 19.

You are how you eat: fast food and impatience.

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  • 1University of Toronto, OBHRM, 105 St. George St., Toronto, Ontario M5S 3E6, Canada. chenbo.zhong@rotman.utoronto.ca

Abstract

Based on recent advancements in the behavioral priming literature, three experiments investigated how incidental exposure to fast food can induce impatient behaviors and choices outside of the eating domain. We found that even an unconscious exposure to fast-food symbols can automatically increase participants' reading speed when they are under no time pressure and that thinking about fast food increases preferences for time-saving products while there are potentially many other product dimensions to consider. More strikingly, we found that mere exposure to fast-food symbols reduced people's willingness to save and led them to prefer immediate gain over greater future return, ultimately harming their economic interest. Thus, the way people eat has far-reaching (often unconscious) influences on behaviors and choices unrelated to eating.

PMID:
20483836
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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