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Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2018 Feb 1;15(2). pii: E244. doi: 10.3390/ijerph15020244.

The Role of Motivation to Reduce Obesity among Elderly People: Response to Priming Temptation in Obese Individuals.

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Department of Psychology of Development and Education, University of Warmia and Mazury, Olsztyn Prawocheńskiego 13, 10-447 Olsztyn, Poland.
Institute of Psychology, University of Gdansk, Bażyńskiego 4, 80-309 Gdansk, Poland.
Institute of Psychology, University of Gdansk, Bażyńskiego 4, 80-309 Gdansk, Poland.
Department of Health Psychology, Gdansk University of Physical Education and Sport, Górskiego 1, 80-336 Gdansk, Poland.


The risk of obesity-related disorders is increased among the elderly, so changing eating habits can be an important element of prevention. The main aim of this article is to consider whether looking at pictures that present either fattening food or healthy food may motivate elderly people to change their nutrition habits. Might priming different kinds of food influence the attractiveness of the food for people in late adulthood undergoing obesity therapy? Based on priming theories, we analysed the effects of the conscious processing of stimuli associated with dietary habits in individuals aged with BMI ≥ 30 kg/m². Our experiments confirmed the influence of a higher-priority goal of "slimming" on the perception and internalization of nutrition-related stimuli. In response to such stimuli, individuals who are actively involved in weight reduction and health-oriented programs use strategies for resisting temptation and to effectively "slim". We present our findings in the context of their theoretical background and practical application.


food related stimuli; late adulthood; overweight; self-regulation

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