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Celebrity chefs are role models for millions of people, not only because they are well-known figures who have culinary skills, but also because they play an important role as potential influencers to promote a healthy lifestyle. However, despite the ubiquity of celebrity chefs in the media, there are limited data related to the influence of celebrity chefs in modern society. Due to this lack of scholarly research, the present study examines the interconnectivity of celebrity chefs and role models through entertainment-education approaches. This study examined the positive influence of celebrity chefs to increase individual behavioral changes and change individuals’ lifestyles habits as models of behavior. An online survey provided information that was quantitatively analyzed for the existence of celebrity-person identification and how it impacted audiences’ beliefs and behaviors. Respondent answers indicated high levels of identification corresponded with viewing celebrity chefs as role models and belief in the television cooking shows efficacy. Celebrity chefs were perceived as a positive influence, particularly the expectation is that people are developing identification with celebrity chefs, which can lead to individual behavioral changes. This article offers unique insight into understanding the behavioral and psychological impact celebrity chefs can have on audiences. The effect of celebrity chefs could be greater to those who experience and are prone to higher levels of identification; thus, this article offers some thoughts on positive health outcomes stemming from this phenomenon. Understanding the implications of celebrity chefs as role models can further research on entertainment-education approaches and mass media-based health initiatives.

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Paola Andrea Albarran (United States of America)
West Texas A&M University (United States of America) 3190
Paola Albarran is the main anchor, executive producer and manager for KEYU Telemundo in Amarillo, TX. She is also a professor in the Department of Communication at West Texas A&M University. Paola joined KEYU in August of 2010 as an intern/multimedia journalist. After 11 months into her journalism career, Paola took on a new role as news anchor. In August of 2013, she was promoted to be the manager of the news team for Telemundo Amarillo. Paola has also been working as a college professor since 2011 at West Texas A&M University, where she combines her love for Communication Studies and Media Communication. Paola has taught a variety of classes including Communication Studies, Fundamentals of Communication, Public Speaking, and Communication Theory. Paola was born and raised in Bogota, Colombia and started her journalism career at the age of 17 years old when she became a reporter for Channel 13. She graduated from Universidad Sergio Arboleda with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and Mass Media. In 2009, just after graduating, she traveled to the United States and took ESL classes in Canyon, TX. Thanks to her tenacity and determination, she was accepted to do a M.A. in Communications at West Texas A&M University, where she graduated. Recently, she obtained her Doctor of Philosophy in Communication from Regent University. Paola loves both of her jobs. She enjoys travelling, reading, going to boxing classes, and eating a healthy meal with her loved ones. The most interesting places she has visited are Egypt and Israel, but she now dreams of going to Australia.
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