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The Association Between Restaurant Menu Label Use and Caloric Intake

Brandon Restrepo, Travis Minor and Janet Peckham

No 282510, Economic Research Report from United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service

Abstract: This study uses survey data to analyze the association between restaurant menu label use and total and source-specific daily caloric intakes among U.S. adults age 20 and older who saw nutrition information on a menu the last time they visited a fast-food or sit-down restaurant. Findings show that survey respondents who report seeing and using restaurant menu labels consume significantly fewer total calories per day than do respondents who report seeing the labels but not using them. Fast-food and sit-down restaurant menu label uses are both significantly associated with lower total daily caloric intake, and the associations are estimated to be of similar magnitudes. Findings also suggest that the total daily calorie consumption difference between restaurant menu label users and nonusers may be partly attributable to restaurant menu label users’ lower intake of calories from restaurants that post nutrition information on menus. Taken together, these results suggest that nutrition information on restaurant menus may be helping some consumers to align their food orders according to their demand for lower calories which, in turn, is also helping them to keep their total daily caloric intake lower relative to consumers who see but do not use the information.

Keywords: Food; Consumption/Nutrition/Food; Safety (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018-10
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DOI: 10.22004/ag.econ.282510

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