What's on the Menu?

Evaluating the Food Environment in Restaurants

by Helen Wu

Download eBook for Free

FormatFile SizeNotes
PDF file 0.8 MB

Use Adobe Acrobat Reader version 7.0 or higher for the best experience.

Abstract

This dissertation is comprised of three essays that each ask the question, "what's on the menu?" in major U.S. chain restaurants, and that each answer it in a way that aims to broaden our understanding of the role of restaurants in the current food environment. Essay 1 represents the largest study to date describing the state of nutrition across a broad set of chain restaurants. Essay 2 is a one-year follow-up analysis that provides a snapshot of the evolving nature of restaurant main entrées between 2010 and 2011, before and after the passage a new national menu labeling law. Essay 3 applies a scenario analysis approach to illustrate the range of conditions under which males and females at various ages could meet U.S. Department of Agriculture nutrition guidelines for sodium through changes in fast food restaurant intake alone.

Research conducted by

This document was submitted as a dissertation in September 2012 in partial fulfillment of the requirements of the doctoral degree in public policy analysis at the Pardee RAND Graduate School. The faculty committee that supervised and approved the dissertation consisted of Jeffrey Wasserman (Chair), Roland Sturm, and Chloe Bird.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation dissertation series. PRGS dissertations are produced by graduate fellows of the Pardee RAND Graduate School, the world's leading producer of Ph.D.'s in policy analysis. The dissertations are supervised, reviewed, and approved by a PRGS faculty committee overseeing each dissertation.

Permission is given to duplicate this electronic document for personal use only, as long as it is unaltered and complete. Copies may not be duplicated for commercial purposes. Unauthorized posting of RAND PDFs to a non-RAND Web site is prohibited. RAND PDFs are protected under copyright law. For information on reprint and linking permissions, please visit the RAND Permissions page.

The RAND Corporation is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.