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Health Commun. 2018 Apr;33(4):453-461. doi: 10.1080/10410236.2016.1278495. Epub 2017 Feb 2.

Source-specific Exposure to Contradictory Nutrition Information: Documenting Prevalence and Effects on Adverse Cognitive and Behavioral Outcomes.

Author information

1
a Department of Communication , Seoul National University.
2
b School of Journalism & Mass Communication , University of Minnesota.
3
c Department of Communication , University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Abstract

Communication scholars have raised concerns that the media present contradictory or conflicting information on health, science, and political issues, speculating that such information may have adverse effects on public cognitions, affect, and behaviors. However, the evidence base for the effects of contradictory messages remains thin. Using nutrition as a case example, this study builds upon this nascent literature by employing a three-wave panel dataset from a survey with a nationally representative sample of American adults. We found that exposure to contradictory nutrition messages from television increases nutrition confusion, whereas exposure from print media decreases confusion. Moreover, nutrition confusion was positively associated with nutrition backlash, and nutrition backlash decreased engagement in fruit and vegetable consumption. Implications for campaigns and other communication interventions are discussed.

PMID:
28151010
PMCID:
PMC6102724
DOI:
10.1080/10410236.2016.1278495
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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