Political Ideology and Food Choices
A new study by Hunch.com -- a site that makes recommendations based on preferences, ranging from which car to drive to which vacation or college choice is best for a person -- suggests a person’s political views say a lot about the food choices they make.
However, the web-based survey is not as scientific as truly objective polls because, among other limitations, it was not based on a representative sample of the population.
Hunch used 80 million answers to questions that it asked its 700,000 members, to predict particular demographics, personality and other characteristics based on their food choices. They then compared all that against the political views they associate themselves with. Overall, 43% of participants said they tended to support liberal politicians, 17% indicated they supported conservative politicians, and 23% said they were middle of the road.
Some other findings from the survey include:
* Liberals are 28% more likely than conservatives to eat fresh fruit daily, and 17% more likely to eat toast or a bagel in the morning, while conservatives are 20% more likely to skip breakfast.
* Some 10% of liberals surveyed indicated they are vegetarians, compared with 3% of conservatives.
* Liberals are 28% more likely than conservatives to enjoy beer, with 60% of liberals indicating they like beer.
* The majority of both liberals and conservatives agreed there's a significant difference between organic and processed food.
Although there's a correlation between views and food choices, the study does not say that one influences the other, as demographics could also play a role.
Such political ideology seems to run deep, with another study published in the April 7, 2011 issue of the journal Current Biology, finding participants who indicated a liberal ideology tending to have a larger anterior cingulated cortex, a brain region linked to monitoring uncertainty, while conservatives showed a larger amygdala, an area linked with greater sensitivity to fear and disgust.
From the May 25, 2011, Prepared Foods' Daily News.