Thursday, December 29, 2011

Schools Encourage Healthier Eating with "Nudges"

[H]ealth experts say using "behavioral economics" to influence student purchasing is a less drastic way to combat childhood obesity and encourage healthier eating. The idea behind this mix of economics and psychology is that subconscious signals affect decisions to eat healthier. Simple tweaks to the lunch line can shift perceptions, steering students toward healthier choices while still allowing choice...Research has found that placing healthier items in the front of the lunch line, promoting food with descriptive names and letting students choose among good-for-you options all have significant impacts. Putting fruit in attractive baskets instead of stainless steel bins or charging less for healthier items has been found to influence student choices. more

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