Death row prisoners request high-calorie branded food before execution

Last Updated: Sun, Sep 23, 2012 12:02 hrs

Death Row prisoners' last meal requests are usually high and dense in calories and often consist of branded foods and beverages, a Cornell University research has revealed.

Meat was the most common request, featured in 83.9 percent of the meals.

The most requested meat was chicken, at 37.3 percent, followed by hamburger, steak, pork and seafood, according to the research that analyzed 247 last meals from inmates awaiting execution.

Soft drinks were also common among the last meal requests of death row prisoners, and 67.9 percent of the inmates requested fried food.

"The growing macabre fascination with 'last meals' offers a window into one's true consumption desires when one's value of the future is discounted close to zero," the New York Daily News quoted the researchers as writing.

The researchers expected pizza to be a frequent last meal choice, but it was requested in only 5.3 percent of the meals. Salad, on the other hand, was requested for 26.9 percent of the meals, despite very few requests for vegetables otherwise.

Prisoners frequently requested specific brand names. This preference "could be driven by a desire for familiarity, comfort, quality consistency, or past associations," researchers suggest.

Brian Wansink, Kevin M. Kniffin and Mitsuru Shimizu published their findings from the self-funded study in the journal Appetite last month. (ANI)

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