The impact of product name on dieters' and nondieters' food evaluations and consumption

Caglar Irmak, Beth Vallen, Stefanie Rosen Robinson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

120 Scopus citations


This research explores the impact of merely altering the name of a food on dieters' and nondieters' evaluations of the food's healthfulness and taste, as well as consumption. Four studies demonstrate that when a food is identified by a relatively unhealthy name (e.g., pasta), dieters perceive the item to be less healthful and less tasty than do nondieters. When the identical food is assigned a relatively healthy name (e.g., salad), however, dieting tendency has no effect on product evaluations. This effect, which results in differences in actual food consumption, is explained by nondieters' insensitivity to food cues as well as dieters' reliance on cues indicating a lack of healthfulness and tendency to employ heuristic information processing when evaluating foods. These findings contribute to the body of literature that explores both individual and contextual factors that influence food evaluation and consumption.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)390-405
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Consumer Research
Issue number2
StatePublished - Aug 2011
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Anthropology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Marketing


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