Eating Better for Less

A National Discount Program for Healthy Food Purchases in South Africa

Published In: American Journal of Health Behavior, v. 37, no. 1, Jan. 2013, p. 56-61

Posted on RAND.org on August 03, 2012

by Ruopeng An, Deepak Patel, Darren Segal, Roland Sturm

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OBJECTIVES: To examine whether reducing prices for healthy food purchases leads to changes in self-reported measures of food consumption and weight status. METHODS: Repeated surveys of about 350,000 HealthyFood participants and nonparticipants. RESULTS: Program participation is associated with more consumption of fruits/vegetables and whole-grain foods and less consumption of high sugar/salt foods, fried foods, processed meats, and fast food. There is no strong evidence that participation reduces obesity. CONCLUSIONS: A substantial price intervention might be effective in improving diets.

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