Minty Fresh! Absolving Dieters of their Consumption Sins

  •  Nguyen Pham    
  •  May Lwin    
  •  Melissa G. Bublitz    


This research contributes to the emerging interest in food morality by exploring the preference for and the effects of a particular food flavor (mint) on consumption behavior. More specifically, we examine how the refreshing oronasal properties of a specific food flavor (i.e., mint) systematically influence consumer preferences and food choice behavior. Across a pilot and two studies, we show that the refreshing properties of mint that can help dieters wash away the guilt associated with the consumption of “taboo” foods. We found that dieters tended to prefer “taboo” foods such as chocolate cookies (study 1) when they were mint-flavored. Further, after having consumed taboo food such as chocolate, dieters were more likely to prefer a mint- (vs. berry- or cinnamon-) flavored oral freshener (study 2). We also provide food marketers and public policy makers with new insights into how certain consumers (i.e., dieters) evaluate mint-flavored food products.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
  • ISSN(Print): 1918-719X
  • ISSN(Online): 1918-7203
  • Started: 2009
  • Frequency: quarterly

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