Dining in the Dark: How Uncertainty Influences Food Acceptance in the Absence of Light
Food Quality and Preference 24.1 (2012): 209-212
15 Pages Posted: 29 Jul 2014
Date Written: July 26, 2011
Environmental cues – such as sights – can influence food acceptance and food intake. Yet there are many situations – such as those involving deployed soldiers, night workers, and nighttime snackers – where such cues are masked by dim-light or darkness. This study examines how and why darkness negatively influences food acceptance and future intake and what can be done to mitigate any potential problem. The results show that ambiguous foods eaten in darkened conditions have a low level of acceptance which mediated by one’s uncertainty about the food. Using clear product information (on packaging, for instance) can reduce this uncertainty and increase acceptance and future intake. Interpretations of these findings are discussed and their implications are underscored for those situations where individuals often eat in dim light or in darkness.
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