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Impacts of attitudes and personality traits on weight goals and willingness to pay for a personalised nutrition programme in Thailand

Sayruamyat, S. (2018) Impacts of attitudes and personality traits on weight goals and willingness to pay for a personalised nutrition programme in Thailand. PhD thesis, University of Reading

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The international growth rate in the obesity epidemic has doubled since 1980 and this is an indication of poor lifestyles in many countries. The increase in obesity rates is not surprising when it happens in developed countries but when this increase appears rapidly and continuously in upper-middle income countries like Thailand it raises concerns about public health. In order to eliminate the growth rate of obesity in the Thai population, it is important to understand not only the causes of increases in body weight but also to understand what significant determinants influence behaviour related to obesity. Accordingly, dieting is the most important and effective treatment to achieve weight goals. However, in some cases diets are considered a threat to dieters as dieting might have a negative impact on body weight, therefore rising obesity rates remains a severe public health concern despite the fact that the majority of people aim to lose weight. Personalised nutrition programmes may help policy makers, marketers and professionals to introduce dietary programmes to help people achieve their weight goals. This study presents an opportunity to enhance knowledge in the context of healthy dietary behaviours focusing on the aspect of economics and social psychology. In social research, the health-related behavioural study is an important approach to understanding cognitive determinants of health behaviours such as healthy eating and physical activity, while also being a way of exploring how these determinants influence and predict such behaviour. This study aims to achieve three objectives: 1) to explore how attitudes, social norms, habits, risk attitudes, time preferences, socio-demographic and economic characteristics influence willingness to pay for a personalised nutrition programme proposed to reach weight goals; 2) to evaluate whether stated behaviour and WTP for the proposed PN programme is stable over time; 3) to assess how personality traits, time preferences, commitment, self-control, weight change and life satisfaction influence weight goal achievement. The key findings showed that the Heckman sample selection model was an appropriate econometric model that represents all determinants from economic and psychological aspects via an expectancy value model to predict health behaviour. Thailand is a potential market for Personalised Nutrition Programmes and such programmes should be a good starting point to improve the dietary habits of the Thai people. Goal commitment and self-control around eating behaviour are important inhibition facilitators to help participants stay focused when trying to achieve their weight goals.

Item Type:Thesis (PhD)
Thesis Supervisor:Nocella, G. and Georgantzis, N.
Thesis/Report Department:School of Agriculture, Policy and Development
Identification Number/DOI:
Divisions:Life Sciences > School of Agriculture, Policy and Development
ID Code:78983


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