From: Andy Soos, ENN
Published May 1, 2012 07:40 AM

What You See is What You Eat

How can you make someone eat healthier? College students wishing to eat healthier may want to invest in a clear fruit bowl says a recent article published in Environment and Behavior. The new study found that when fruits and vegetables are within arm's reach, students are more likely to eat them. Furthermore, making fruit and vegetables more visible increases the intake of fruit, but the same does not hold true for vegetables.

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The study results showed that placing apple slices and carrot cuts in closer proximity to participants increased intake of these healthy foods. Making these foods more visible increased intake of apple slices but not carrot cuts, possibly because fruits taste sweet and so may be more tasty to the eye than bitter-tasting carrots. These data are the first to demonstrate experimentally that the proximity and visibility of fruits and vegetables can influence intake of these foods.

"Apples, but not carrots, have sugar, which is known to stimulate brain reward regions that induce a 'wanting' for foods that contain sugar," the authors wrote. "Hence, apple slices may be more visually appealing than carrots."

The intake of the food objects (apple slices or carrot cuts) did not significantly differ by gender or Body Mass Index. 

All of this implies that to get people to eat healthier, have the fruit more visible and open to easy access.

See Proximity and Visibility for further information

Carrots image via Wikipedia

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