Published on May 22nd, 2012 | by Kim LaCapria0
Organic Food Eaters Just As Smug As You Think, Study Finds
There’s a stereotype of the eco-conscious, organics-munching consumer of Whole Foods linked to affluence and an attitude of superiority, and at least one of those assumptions has some basis in fact, a new study finds.
If you’ve been irked by a self-important expensive-veggie chomper in the past, your annoyance may not be totally on you. According to a new study out of the department of psychological sciences at Loyola University in New Orleans, organic foodies may in fact be sort of jerks, and there’s some science to back that up.
May I interject with the fact that now when someone calls you on your Beefy Cheesy Nachos from Taco Bell, you can counter with the fact that their organic dogma can be definitively linked to snobbery via peer-reviewed research? Study author Kendall Eskine appeared on the TODAY show to discuss the findings in organic jerkery, saying:
“There’s a line of research showing that when people can pat themselves on the back for their moral behavior, they can become self-righteous… We found that the organic people judged much harder, compared to the control or comfort-food groups.”
The groups to which Eskine was referring were the three in the study- one that was shown a series of pictures of comfort foods, one that was shown a picture of standard foods that were healthy, and a third shown organic foods. The participants in the third group displayed a measurably higher level of moral smugness when following the viewing of the pictures, moral questions were posed.
Of the three, the comfort food viewers indicated they’d donate a full 24 minutes of time to a needy stranger, the control group committed 19, while the organic jagoffs pledged a mere 13 minutes to the stranger. Eskine explains:
“There’s something about being exposed to organic food that made them feel better about themselves… And that made them kind of jerks a little bit, I guess… You’d think eating organic would make you feel elevated and want to pay it forward.”
Eskine adds that researchers theorized that by eating organic, many felt they’d “done their good deed” for the day.