Objective: A bogus pipeline paradigm was utilized to assess whether food intake underreporting by unsuccessful dieters is intentional.
Method: Twenty-eight subjects completed 1-week food diaries. Then, 17 subjects in the experimental condition kept 2-week food diaries while being told the researcher was verifying their report. Eleven subjects in the control group were asked merely to self-monitor for two more weeks.
Results: Results indicate that subjects in the experimental group reported significantly greater intake than control subjects, when controlling for reported intake during the screening phase and weight change.
Discussion: Thus, the belief that the researcher could verify their report improved the accuracy of patients' self-report. However, all subjects continued to underreport their dietary intake. In summary, underreporting may be an intentional attempt to manage presentation to others in a society that is increasingly critical of overweight persons.