Correlational study and randomised controlled trial for understanding and changing red meat consumption: The role of eating identities

Valentina Carfora, D. Caso, M. Conner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

37 Citations (Scopus)


Rationale The present studies aimed to contribute to the literature on psychological variables involved in reducing red meat consumption (RMC). Objective Study 1 investigated whether the theory of planned behaviour (TPB), plus healthy-eating and meat-eating identities, could explain intentions to reduce RMC. Study 2 evaluated the effectiveness of an SMS text message intervention on self-monitoring to reduce RMC. Methods In Study 1, data were collected daily using online food diaries for one week and a TPB questionnaire. Study 2 was a randomised controlled trial assessing pre– and post–RMC and TPB constructs by online food diaries and questionnaires over a one-week period. Participants were Italian undergraduates in each study (Study 1: N = 405; Study 2: N = 244). In Study 2, participants were randomly allocated to control and message condition groups. Participants in the message condition group received a daily SMS, which reminded them to monitor RMC, while participants in the control group did not receive any message. Only students who completed all measures were considered in the analyses (Study 1: N = 342; Study 2: N = 228). Results Study 1 showed that affective and instrumental attitudes, perceived behavioural control, and meat-eating identity explained intentions to reduce RMC, while subjective norm, past behaviour, and healthy-eating identity did not. Study 2 showed that an SMS intervention was effective in increasing intentions and reducing RMC. Mediation analyses indicated partial serial mediation through healthy-eating and meat-eating identities and intentions. Conclusion The present studies provide support for the predictive validity of TPB in explaining intentions to reduce RMC and for the efficacy of an SMS intervention targeting self-monitoring in reducing RMC. Findings confirmed the important role of eating identities in explaining intentions to reduce RMC and in changing this behaviour.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)244-252
Number of pages9
Publication statusPublished - 2017


  • Adult
  • Attitude to Health
  • Eating
  • Female
  • Health (social science)
  • Health Behavior
  • Health Promotion
  • Health Surveys
  • Health promotion
  • Healthy eating
  • History and Philosophy of Science
  • Humans
  • Italy
  • Male
  • Messages
  • Red Meat
  • Red meat
  • Self-identity
  • Self-monitoring
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Text Messaging
  • Theory of planned behaviour
  • Young Adult


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