Rapid Assessment of Reward-Related Eating: The RED-X5

Obesity (Silver Spring). 2019 Feb;27(2):325-331. doi: 10.1002/oby.22374.


Objective: The prevalence of obesity has created a plethora of questionnaires characterizing psychological aspects of eating behavior, such as reward-related eating (RRE). The Reward-based Eating Drive questionnaires (RED-9, RED-13) broadly and deeply assess the RRE construct. However, large-sample research designs require shorter questionnaires that capture RRE quickly and precisely. This study sought to develop a brief, reliable, and valid version of the RED questionnaire.

Methods: All-subset correlation was used to find a subset that maximally associated with the full RED-13 in two separate samples. Results were validated in a third independent sample. Internal consistency, test-retest reliability, and ability to explain variance in external outcomes were also assessed.

Results: A five-item questionnaire (RED-X5) correlated strongly with RED-13 in the independent sample (r = 0.95). RED-X5 demonstrated high internal consistency (omega total ≥ 0.80) and 6-month test-retest reliability (r = 0.72). RED-X5 accurately reproduced known associations between RED-13 and BMI, diabetes status, and craving for sweet and savory foods. As a novel finding, RED questionnaires predicted laboratory intake of chips.

Conclusions: RED-X5 is a short, reliable, and valid measure of the RRE construct and can be readily implemented in large-sample research designs in which questionnaire space is limited.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Eating / psychology*
  • Feeding Behavior / psychology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Psychometrics / methods*
  • Reward
  • Surveys and Questionnaires