There are few people who find joy in eating a serving of steamed kale. This rough, leafy vegetable is super healthy and all the rage in the health world. But, for some, the taste has much to be desired. Why is it, then, if kale is highlighted on a menu or on featured on a blog as an essential component in a green smoothie, do we feel compelled to give it another go?
Researchers at Cornell University believe they have discovered the answer: people tend to make healthy choices when they are “visible and easy to reach (convenient), enticingly displayed (attractive), and appear like an obvious choice (normal).” This is known as the C.A.N. Approach. So, while crinkly kale may not be your first choice, when it is displayed on the menu with an appealing description and everyone in line is ordering it, you may just change your mind.
The C.A.N. Approach can easily be implemented in our everyday lives. For example, keeping cleaned veggies in the front of the fridge, having an assortment of fruit already rinsed in a fruit basket, and stocking your cupboard with dried fruit, nuts, and seeds are all ways that healthy food can be made convenient. Any meal can be made attractive by sprinkling a handful of fresh herbs on top, using a variety of colorful foods, and serving it in a fun dish. To make healthy eating normal, flip though a health food magazine or surf the web for a healthy blog and select a recipe to make, choose to place fresh produce in the front of your refrigerator, and finally, make healthy eating a habit.