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Certain factors, such as food quality, label content and grocery characteristics, may be considered when purchasing foods. Food availability in the home has been shown to influence dietary behaviours, also associated with delay discounting (DD). The present study sought to characterize the relationships between DD, food purchasing considerations and healthfulness of foods in the home.
A cross-sectional, online survey of adults (n 477) was conducted with the following measures: DD, consideration of food quality (nutrition, taste) and grocery characteristics (price, ease of preparation, shelf-life) while shopping, use of food labels and food availability in the home. DD was assessed by the area under the delay discounting curve (AUC) using a binary choice task. Greater AUC reflects lower DD. Structural equation modelling was used to allow AUC to simultaneously predict purchasing considerations and foods in the home.
Adult employees in south-east Alabama, USA.
DD was negatively associated with food label use and emphasis on food quality when shopping (P<0·001). In the final model, DD was associated with availability of healthful foods in the home and emphasis on food quality and grocery characteristics. About 33 % of the variance in shopping behaviours, 5 % in food label use, 7 % in availability of healthful foods and 4 % in availability of unhealthful foods was explained by DD.
Individuals with lower DD appear to be more thoughtful in making food purchasing decisions and have healthful foods available in the home more frequently than individuals with higher DD.
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