Post 2 – Part 2 – Traffic Lights

I recently read an article about a study done to help people make healthier eating choices. The experiment was simple: red means unhealthy, yellow means semi-healthy, and green means healthy. In a hospital cafeteria items that were unhealthy were given read labels and healthy choices were given green. At first just the colored labels were used. A second factor was introduced when the experimenters made the healthier options easier to find in the cafeteria. They found that just putting the colored labels on influenced people to choose healthier things. When the unhealthier things were not as easy to see the sales decreased even more.
I really like this idea because I hate when I think that I am buying something that is decently healthy and it is not even close. This practice would allow people to find healthy food with very little effort. The blog nor the link to the experiment mentions if the people were completely aware of the labeling scale or not. I would believe that people would assume what the colors stood for because they relate to traffic signs. I would also enjoy the unhealthy options being hard to find. If yummy cookies were hidden then I wouldn’t be able to make impulse buys as I am paying for my food. I’m sure that companies would not enjoy having these labels on their foods. Well, at least for the foods that would fall into the red category. I hope that some where int he near future I am asked at work (Burger King) to go around and place red stickers on all of our menu options.


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