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March 24 , 2011

Eating Behavior and Obesity

Behavioral Economics Strategies for Health Professionals


Obesity is one of the most pressing health issues affecting our country. This unique volume is the first to apply behavioral economicsóthe integration of psychological and economic knowledgeóto the study of eating behavior. The text demonstrates how this discipline can be used to understand why it so difficult for individuals to control their eating habits, and helps readers use this knowledge to create and improve public health nutrition programs and policies.

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The text examines dietary choices and obesity through a multidisciplinary lens of biological, psychological, and social factors, and draws from the disciplines of behavioral economics, nutrition, public health, and health promotion. Based on the premise that humans are hardwired to make judgment errors and need a ìnudgeî to make decisions in their best interests, the book argues that increasing consumer well-being requires changing an individualís personal environment. It describes the power of irrational forces that compete with sensible judgment in regard to food choices, and provides strategies for improving decisions and health habits. Highly accessible, the text will be of interest to students, professors, and practitioners in nutrition-related health programs, as well as to public health policy makers.

Key Features:

  • Assesses the social determinants that affect nutrition choices, including food availability, nutrition education, income, culture, and other key factors
  • Demonstrates how flawed decisions and self-control difficulties can affect eating behavior
  • Provides a valuable framework for improving public health through understanding and changing the way individuals make food decisions
  • Explains the link between obesity rates and economics of food choice (fast food, food marketing, and social factors)
  • Provides strategies and tools to help people improve their decision-making and health habits

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