Time scarcity and food choices: an overview

Appetite. 2006 Sep;47(2):196-204. doi: 10.1016/j.appet.2006.02.014. Epub 2006 May 15.


Time scarcity, the feeling of not having enough time, has been implicated in changes in food consumption patterns such as a decrease in food preparation at home, an increase in the consumption of fast foods, a decrease in family meals, and an increase in the consumption of convenience or ready-prepared foods. These food choices are associated with less healthful diets and may contribute to obesity and chronic health problems such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and cancer. In spite of the potential importance for health, there has been little study of how time scarcity influences people's food choices. This paper presents an overview of time issues related to food choices and discuss applications of time research for nutrition and health researchers, policy makers, and practitioners interested in food choice.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Choice Behavior*
  • Diet / trends*
  • Employment
  • Food Preferences*
  • Food Supply
  • Health Policy*
  • Humans
  • Nutritional Physiological Phenomena
  • Restaurants
  • Time Factors