The influence of attractiveness and convenience cues on food appeal in adults with and without ADHD

Shirley Hershko*, Samuele Cortese, Eyal Ert, Anna Aronis, Adina Maeir, Yehuda Pollak

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Objective: Previous research on adults with ADHD revealed high rates of overweight and obesity, as well as unhealthy diet habits. Other studies demonstrated that social-affective contexts can influence food choice. This study examines the sensitivity of adults with ADHD to cues of food attractiveness and convenience, for healthy and unhealthy foods. Method: One hundred and seventy-two university students with (n = 59) and without (n = 113) ADHD, aged 19–40, participated in the study. Participants rated the level of appeal of 32 pictures of healthy and unhealthy foods, which varied in the degree of attractiveness and convenience. Results: The findings reveal a higher level of appeal of attractive food items compared to non-attractive ones (p < .001), as well as of convenient compared to non-convenient food items (p = .005). Type of diagnostic group did not have an effect on the level of appeal. Conclusion: Increasing the attractiveness and convenience of food items increased the level of appeal for both students with and without ADHD. These findings emphasize the importance of environmental health intervention to potentially reduce abnormal eating pattern in the ADHD adult population, which may contribute in preventing the reported higher risk of obesity in this population.

Original languageAmerican English
Article number104679
StatePublished - 1 Jul 2020

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© 2020 Elsevier Ltd


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