Regulatory Focus and Junk Food Avoidance: The Influence of Health Consciousness, Perceived Risk and Message Framing

Shimul, A. S., Cheah, I., & Lou, A. J. (2021). Regulatory focus and junk food avoidance: The influence of health consciousness, perceived risk and message framing. Appetite, 105428. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.appet.2021.105428

26 Pages Posted: 25 Aug 2021

See all articles by Anwar Sadat Shimul

Anwar Sadat Shimul

Curtin University of Technology - Curtin Business School - Bentley Campus

Isaac Cheah

Curtin University - School of Marketing

Andrew Jerr Lou

Curtin University

Date Written: July 23, 2021

Abstract

The purpose of this research is to examine: (1) the health-related factors namely perceived health consciousness and perceived risk that motivate a person’s intention to avoid junk food consumption, and (2) the influence of regulatory focus (promotion vs prevention foci) on a person’s intention to avoid junk food consumption under the conditions of gain-framing vs loss-framing health communication and messages. A set of hypotheses are tested across three studies. Study 1 (n = 148) shows that regulatory focus influences the consumers’ intention to avoid junk food. Also, health consciousness mediates the relationship between regulatory focus and junk food avoidance intention. Study 2 (n = 132) finds that perceived risk amplifies the relationship between regulatory focus and health consciousness. Study 3 (n = 168) demonstrates that message framing combined with the appropriate regulatory focus positively influences the consumers’ intention to avoid junk food. The findings validate and extend the current theoretical framework in relation to unhealthy eating behaviours (e.g., junk food consumption). Based on the findings of this research, the practitioners can utilise the correct type of health information or claims for the appropriate consumer segment (whether prevention or promotion foci) to effectively implement campaigns and programs.

Keywords: Junk food, Consumption, Diet, Food choices, Obesity, Regulatory focus

Suggested Citation

Shimul, Anwar Sadat and Cheah, Isaac and Lou, Andrew Jerr, Regulatory Focus and Junk Food Avoidance: The Influence of Health Consciousness, Perceived Risk and Message Framing (July 23, 2021). Shimul, A. S., Cheah, I., & Lou, A. J. (2021). Regulatory focus and junk food avoidance: The influence of health consciousness, perceived risk and message framing. Appetite, 105428. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.appet.2021.105428, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3892094 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3892094

Anwar Sadat Shimul (Contact Author)

Curtin University of Technology - Curtin Business School - Bentley Campus ( email )

GPO Box U1987
Perth WA 6845
Australia

Isaac Cheah

Curtin University - School of Marketing ( email )

Australia

Andrew Jerr Lou

Curtin University ( email )

Kent Street
Bentley
Perth, WA WA 6102
Australia

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