Disclosure: Nothing to report.
Food neophiles: Profiling the adventurous eater
Version of Record online: 1 JUL 2015
© 2015 The Obesity Society
Volume 23, Issue 8, pages 1577–1581, August 2015
How to Cite
Latimer, L. A., Pope, L. and Wansink, B. (2015), Food neophiles: Profiling the adventurous eater. Obesity, 23: 1577–1581. doi: 10.1002/oby.21154
Author contributions: Dr. Latimer assisted in conceptualizing the study and in carrying out analyses, drafted initial sections of the manuscript, and approved the final manuscript. Dr. Pope assisted in conceptualizing the study and in carrying out analyses, wrote sections of the manuscript, and approved the final manuscript. Dr. Wansink designed the data collection instrument, oversaw data collection, critically reviewed the manuscript, and approved the final manuscript as submitted. All the authors had full access to the data and take responsibility for the integrity of data and the accuracy of data analysis.
- Issue online: 20 JUL 2015
- Version of Record online: 1 JUL 2015
- Manuscript Accepted: 21 APR 2015
- Manuscript Revised: 23 MAR 2015
- Manuscript Received: 26 NOV 2014
The study objective was to identify how food neophilia—having an adventurous eating style for new/different foods—may relate to body mass index (BMI).
A nationwide online survey was conducted in 2012 with a group of 501 diverse young women (mean age = 26.8, mean BMI = 25.96). Items measured eating adventurousness, perceptions of novel foods, lifestyle and psychological characteristics, and BMI (dependent variable).
Linear regressions were run to examine associations between eating adventurousness and weight-related outcomes. To examine mean differences between adventurous and non-adventurous eaters, a one-way ANOVA was run for variables on perceptions of novel foods, lifestyle, and psychology (significance level = P < 0.05). Food neophiles had lower BMIs (P < 0.01) and were more likely to cook to connect with their heritage, host friends for dinner, be physically active, and be concerned about the healthfulness of food, when compared to non-adventurous eaters (all P values < 0.05).
Promoting adventurous eating in adults could help individuals lose/maintain weight without feeling as restricted. Given the lack of research on food neophiles, future studies should examine their characteristics and behaviors, as well as how food neophiles may intersect with others interested in food (e.g., foodies).