Values and preferences influencing willingness to change red and processed meat consumption in response to evidence-based information: a mixed methods study Journal Articles uri icon

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  • AbstractObjectives:The aim of the study is (1) to assess the extent to which omnivores are willing to stop or reduce their consumption of red and processed meat in response to evidence-based information regarding the possible reduction of cancer mortality and incidence achieved by dietary modification; (2) to identify socio-demographic categories associated with higher willingness to change meat consumption and (3) to understand the motives facilitating and hindering such a change.Design:During an initial computer-assisted web interview, respondents were presented with scenarios containing the estimates of the absolute risk reduction in overall cancer incidence and mortality tailored to their declared level of red and processed meat consumption. Respondents were asked whether they would stop or reduce their average meat consumption based on the information provided. Their dietary choices were assessed at 6-month follow-up. Additionally, we conducted semi-structured interviews to better understand the rationale for dietary practices and the perception of health information.Participants:The study was conducted among students and staff of three universities in Krakow, Poland.Results:Most of the 513 respondents were unwilling to change their consumption habits. We found gender to be a significant predictor of the willingness. Finally, we identified four themes reflecting key motives that determined meat consumption preferences: the importance of taste and texture, health consciousness, the habitual nature of cooking and persistence of omnivorous habits.Conclusions:When faced with health information about the uncertain reduction in the risk of cancer mortality and incidence, the vast majority of study participants were unwilling to introduce changes in their consumption habits.


  • Prokop-Dorner, Anna
  • Piłat-Kobla, Aleksandra
  • Zając, Joanna
  • Luśtyk, Michalina
  • Valli, Claudia
  • Łapczuk, Aneta
  • Brzyska, Monika
  • Johnston, Bradley
  • Zera, Dena
  • Guyatt, Gordon
  • Alonso-Coello, Pablo
  • Bala, Malgorzata M

publication date

  • August 2022