Proximity and visibility of fruits and vegetables influence intake in a kitchen setting among college students
This 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. The researchers tested a total of 96 college students by placing apple slices and carrot cuts in either clear or opaque bowls at a table close to the participants or at a table two meters away. Interestingly, making the food more visible to participants by placing them in clear bowls increased the intake of the apples but not the carrots. The researchers explained that this might be due to the fact that fruit is sweeter and may induce more motivation to eat than bitter-tasting vegetables. The authors also offered suggestions for the structure of dining and café settings on college campuses. Placing healthy foods in locations that are easy to see and easy to reach may encourage diners to indulge in more of these foods.