Journal of Public Health

, Volume 27, Issue 2, pp 143–149 | Cite as

Grazing, motives to eat palatable foods, and fat and sugar consumption: an exploratory investigation

  • Michail MantziosEmail author
  • Helen Egan
  • Rebecca Keyte
  • Henna Bahia
  • Misba Hussain
Original Article



Contemporary research investigating obesity has focused on grazing (i.e., an uncontrolled and repetitive consumption of small amounts of food). Meanwhile, the association between grazing and motivations or actual consumption of energy-dense foods as explanatory factors has not been explored in current weight regulation research.


The association among grazing, motivations to eat palatable foods and fat and sugar consumption were explored in a cross-sectional study with university students (n = 318) who were recruited to participate in an online study.


Results indicated that both motivations to eat palatable foods and fat and sugar consumption were positively related to grazing, but only motivations to eat palatable foods explained the positive relationship between grazing and current weight.


Motivations to eat palatable foods appears to be more explanatory of grazing in the sphere of weight regulation and grazing than the actual consumption of fat and sugar. Possible explanations and future directions are discussed.

Level V: Opinions of respected authorities, based on clinical experience, descriptive studies or reports of expert committees.


Grazing Motivations to eat palatable foods Obesity Fat consumption Sugar consumption 


Compliance with ethical standards

The study was approved by the Ethical Review Board of the University and was in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki Declaration and its later amendments. Informed written consent was obtained prior to the experiment. This article does not contain any studies with animals.

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Informed consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.

Supplementary material

10389_2018_944_MOESM1_ESM.docx (22 kb)
ESM 1 (DOCX 21 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Michail Mantzios
    • 1
    Email author
  • Helen Egan
    • 1
  • Rebecca Keyte
    • 1
  • Henna Bahia
    • 1
  • Misba Hussain
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Psychology, Faculty of Business, Law and Social SciencesBirmingham City UniversityBirminghamUK

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