The perils of marketing weight-management remedies and the role of health literacy

Lisa E. Bolton, Amit Bhattacharjee, Americus Reed

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


This research explores the impact of weight-management remedy marketing on healthy lifestyle behaviors. Three studies demonstrate that exposure to drug (but not supplement) marketing for weight management encourages unhealthy consumer behavior as a result of consumers' reliance on erroneous beliefs about health remedies. The authors explore the possible mitigating role of two dimensions of healthy literacy: nutrition knowledge and remedy knowledge. Whether measured or manipulated, the results show remedy knowledge to be more effective than nutrition knowledge at lessening the effect of weight-management drug marketing on unhealthy behavior. The authors close with a discussion of the theoretical and substantive implications of this research for consumer welfare.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)50-62
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Public Policy and Marketing
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 1 2015

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Business and International Management
  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Marketing


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