Promoting the avoidance of high-calorie snacks using Facebook as a self-affirmation manipulation.

Radley, Lucy (2016) Promoting the avoidance of high-calorie snacks using Facebook as a self-affirmation manipulation. Undergraduate thesis, University of Chichester.

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Currently one in four adults in the UK are obese, and high calorie snacking plays a key role in this problem. Self-affirmation has been used to promote healthy dietary behaviours, and Facebook is emerging as new tool for eliciting self-affirmation, yet Facebook has not been used to self-affirm people in this context. Additionally, message-framing has been found to have significant effects on health message acceptance, yet research comparing appearance-focused and health-focused messages is limited and inconclusive. The present study examined the influence of self-affirming people (using Facebook or a standard self-affirmation task) and promoting the avoidance of high-calorie snacking behaviour following a health-focused or appearance-focused message. Participants completed either a Facebook, Self-Affirmation, or Control task and read either an appearance-focused or health-focused message highlighting the consequences of high-calorie snacking. High-calorie snacking behaviour and intentions to reduce high-calorie snacking were recorded at baseline and after seven days. Results indicate that the combination of the Control task (compared to the Self-affirmation and Facebook tasks) and appearance-focused (rather than health-focused) message resulted in significantly lower self-reported high-calorie snacking behaviour after seven days. This indicates that appearance-focused messages may be more effective in promoting the avoidance of high calorie snacks than health-focused messages. Implications of this and suggestions for future research are discussed within.

Item Type: Thesis (Undergraduate)
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Divisions: Departments > Psychology and Counselling
Undergraduate Dissertations
Depositing User: Steve Bowman
Date Deposited: 20 Jul 2016 11:25
Last Modified: 20 Jul 2016 11:25

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