The purpose of this research is to design, develop, and evaluate the impacts of information systems focused on instructing and motivating consumers to sufficiently modify their food purchases so as to meet the National Cancer Institute's (NCI) nutritional guidelines as related to the reduction of cancer risk. The research is guided by psychological and communication theory and principles, an information and behavior framework, and considerable prior research on consumer behavior, including recent research in modifying consumer food purchases in supermarkets. Feedback and behavioral modeling strategies have proven to be particularly effective behavior change procedures, tested out in the prior research. Starting with a formative research phase, these procedures will be incorporated into automated and interactive information systems. The behavioral modeling component will be consumer-activated and present the most pertinent information on food purchase/dietary change within two-minute segments in a miniaturized, unfolding campaign. The feedback system will allow quick entry of all intended major food purchases and provide immediate nutrition feedback (e.g., percent fat) on these purchases, the relationship of the feedback to NCI goals, and recommend specific product substitutions. These systems will be placed in supermarket and shopping mall sites during a pilot test, refinement stage, and during a larger scale field test. The work will be done in collaboration with the second largest supermarket chain in the U.S. Dependent measures will track selected individuals' weekly food purchases and aggretate sales in supermarkets of slelect product classes. Additional and comprehensive person measures will be assessed as they relate to behavior change; and at the settings, procedures will be instituted to maximize information system use. Finally, the relative efficacy of the different sites and system components will be instituted to maximize information system use. Finally, the relative efficacy of the different sites and system components will be assessed. Other measures will be used to assess consumer and commercial acceptance of the systems, and cost-effectiveness. The findings will be considered in the context of contributing to national goals for dietary change and toward more effective health promotion systems.
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