JHSE Volume 6, Number 3 Cover
Barbara O'Neill
Jing Jian Xiao
Karen Ensle


health, wealth, nutrition facts labels, personal finance

How to Cite

O’Neill, B., Xiao, J. J., & Ensle, K. (2018). Reading Nutrition Labels: A Predictor of Health and Wealth?. Journal of Human Sciences and Extension, 6(3). Retrieved from https://www.jhseonline.com/article/view/786


This study explored relationships between the practice of reading Nutrition Facts labels on food products and the frequency of performance of 19 positive health and financial practices. Data were collected using an online survey with 3,361 observations that provided a simultaneous assessment of the participating individuals’ health and financial practices. Few publicly-available instruments of this type exist. The reliability of the overall scale used in this study was .845. Support was found for three hypotheses: there are differences in demographic characteristics between those who read Nutrition Facts labels and others and respondents who reported reading nutrition labels had both higher health practice scores and higher financial practice scores than others. Those who were more likely to read nutrition labels were females, older respondents, and those with higher education and incomes. Findings of this study, which provide evidence of positive associations between two different aspects of people’s lives, imply that it might be useful for both health and financial practitioners to know if their clients/students read nutrition labels on a regular basis. Having this information can inform the content and duration of interventions to change health- and financial-related behaviors.

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