April 8, 2009

When you see salad, do you order French fries?

Sometimes these studies just don't make sense. The NY Times reports a new study says when a restaurant has a salad on the menu, you order French fries more often.

That has never happened to me. See salad, order fries. I sometimes order the crispy chicken on the salad, when I know the grilled chicken is less calories. (But I also know that the grilled chicken has nearly zero flavor.)

Here's the report, but I just don't know if I believe it.

Fast-food chains have recently deflected criticism of their menu offerings by adding healthy items like salads. But a paper soon to be released in the Journal of Consumer Research suggests that the presence of healthy options on a menu can induce some diners to eat less healthily than they otherwise would. 

In one study, college students were given one of two menus. One menu featured French fries, chicken nuggets and a baked potato; the other included those same items as well as a salad. The French fries, widely perceived as the least healthful option, were three times as popular with students selecting from the menu that had the salad as they were with the other group. more...

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