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Centre for Behavioural
Research in Cancer

Impact of food product health warnings on dietary decision making

A growing body of evidence suggests that food cue exposure activates conditioned appetitive physiological and psychological responses that may override current metabolic needs and existing eating goals, such as the desire to maintain a healthy diet. This conditioned response results in unhealthy dietary choices and is a contributing factor in the current obesity epidemic. Prime-based obesity prevention measures such as health warnings at point-of-sale or on product packaging have potential to counter the influence of the obesogenic environment at the crucial moment when people make food purchasing or consumption decisions. This study examines the effects of text-only and text-and-graphic negatively and positively framed health warnings on dietary choice behaviour. The study also records electroencephalographic (EEG) correlates of selective attention and food cue-evoked craving (N1, P3 and LPP) to examine whether health warning exposure reduces the neural appetitive response toward palatable food cues. This research formed a PhD research program for Daniel Rosenblatt.

CBRC staff

Dr Helen Dixon, Prof Melanie Wakefield


Daniel Rosenblatt, Dr Stefan Bode and Dr Carsten Murakowski (The University of Melbourne)


Cancer Council Victoria PhD scholarship


2014 - present