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Meal preparation behaviour and obesity: time spent cooking in the Czech Republic

Tereza Pilarova (UZEI, Praha, Czech Republic)
Miroslava Bavorova (UZEI, Praha, Czech Republic)
Lucie Vokáčová (UZEI, Praha, Czech Republic)
Sven Gruener (Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg, Halle, Germany)

British Food Journal

ISSN: 0007-070X

Article publication date: 11 May 2022

Issue publication date: 9 February 2023




The objective of this explorative study was to analyse the association of socio-economic factors and attitudes towards cooking with the time devoted to home meals cooking in the Czech Republic. Furthermore, the authors tested and analysed data to see if there is any relationship between the time devoted to cooking by respondents and obesity.


The sample data consisted of 1,006 inhabitants’ subjects selected using the quota sampling following the structure of the population structure. Ordinary least squares (OLS) regressions were estimated to analyse factors influencing the time spent in the preparation of meals at home. The correlation between time devoted to cooking by respondents and obesity was addressed using the Kruskal–Wallis test and one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA).


The results showed that female gender, higher age, smaller household size and presence of children increased the time spent by respondents in the preparation of home-cooked meals. Home cooking is perceived as a tastier option compared to, for example, chilled ready meals. The time devoted to cooking by respondents and her/his above average weight are correlated in our study.


To the authors’ knowledge, no recent study has comprehensively analysed cooking behaviour and time spent cooking in the post-Soviet countries, including the Czech Republic. The authors’ quota-representative study provided relevant insights into eating behaviour, as the Czech Republic has faced a high increase in the obesity rates in the last decade.



The authors would like to acknowledge the contribution of Ing. Iveta Bošková Ph.D. in organizing the data collection.

Funding: Support for this article came from the Internal research project IAEI No. 5/1118/2017 “Information transmission on producer and product within the agri-food chain”.


Pilarova, T., Bavorova, M., Vokáčová, L. and Gruener, S. (2023), "Meal preparation behaviour and obesity: time spent cooking in the Czech Republic", British Food Journal, Vol. 125 No. 3, pp. 848-868.



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