University of Cambridge > Talks.cam > Bradford Hill seminars at the Cambridge Institute of Public Health > Nudges, Norms, and Comfort Food: Tiny interventions to get kids to eat vegetables and astronauts to eat anything

Nudges, Norms, and Comfort Food: Tiny interventions to get kids to eat vegetables and astronauts to eat anything

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To improve people’s health, we may be better off trying to promote the eating of healthy foods, rather than trying to prevent people from eating unhealthy ones. I will describe two distinct lines of research in which we use small interventions based on social psychological principles to promote healthy eating. In the first line of work, we attempt to get children to eat more vegetables in their school cafeterias by using nudges that take advantage of contrast effects as well as (non-existent) norms. In the second line of work, we prepare to intervene with astronauts on the International Space Station to simultaneously reduce their stress and stop them from losing weight. I will describe our ground studies in which we test two strategies to reduce stress and increase eating: providing comfort food and giving people control over their meal preparation.

This talk is part of the Bradford Hill seminars at the Cambridge Institute of Public Health series.

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