Training choices toward low value options
Number of pages
SourceJudgment and Decision Making, 15, 2, (2020), pp. 254-265
Article / Letter to editor
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SW OZ BSI SCP
SW OZ BSI KLP
Judgment and Decision Making
SubjectBehaviour Change and Well-being; Experimental Psychopathology and Treatment
Food decisions are driven by differences in value of choice alternatives such that high value items are preferred over low value items. However, recent research has demonstrated that by implementing the Cue-Approach Training (CAT) the odds of choosing low value items over high value items can be increased. This effect was explained by increased attention to the low value items induced by CAT. Our goal was to replicate the original findings and to address the question of the underlying mechanism by employing eye-tracking during participants' choice making. During CAT participants were presented with images of food items and were instructed to quickly respond to some of them when an auditory cue was presented (cued items), and not without this cue (uncued items). Next, participants made choices between two food items that differed on whether they were cued during CAT (cued versus uncued) and in pre-training value (high versus low). As predicted, results showed participants were more likely to select a low value food item over a high value food item for consumption when the low value food item had been cued compared to when the low value item had not been cued. Important, and against our hypothesis, there was no significant increase in gaze time for low value cued items compared to low value uncued items. Participants did spend more time fixating on the chosen item compared to the unchosen alternative, thus replicating previous work in this domain. The present research thus establishes the robustness of CAT as means of facilitating choices for low value over high value food but could not demonstrate that this increased preference was due to increased attention for cued low value items. The present research thus raises the question how CAT may increase choices for low value options.
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