Novel ways to increase liking and intake of food are needed to encourage acceptance of healthier food. How enjoyable we remember food to have been is likely to be a significant predictor of food choice. Two studies examined whether remembered enjoyment of eating a food can be increased and whether this makes individuals more likely to eat that food in the future. In Study One, a simple manipulation of instructing participants to rehearse what they found enjoyable about a food immediately after eating it was used to increase remembered enjoyment (relative to controls). In a separate study; Study Two, the effect of increasing remembered enjoyment on food choice was tested by examining whether the manipulation to increase remembered enjoyment resulted in participants choosing to eat more of a food as part of a later buffet lunch. The experimental manipulation increased remembered enjoyment for the food (Study One). A change in remembered enjoyment was shown to have a significant effect on the amount of a food participants chose to eat the following day for lunch (Study Two). The present studies suggest that remembered enjoyment can be increased via a simple act of rehearsal, resulting in a later increase in the amount of food chosen and eaten. Interventions based on altering remembered enjoyment of healthy food choices warrant further investigation.
Robinson, E., Blissett, J., & Higgs, S. (2012). Changing memory of food enjoyment to increase food liking, choice and intake. British Journal of Nutrition, 108(8), 1505-1510. https://doi.org/10.1017/S0007114511007021