Parents play an extremely important role in helping their children develop food preferences, but attempts to encourage young children to eat a more healthy diet may actually be having the opposite effect, according to a review published in the International Journal of Obesity (1).
Many children become fussy eaters around the age of 18-24 months, forming the start of a long term battle with food for many parents. Toddlers who were once happy to eat a wide range of foods, including fruits and vegetables, may start to refuse to eat particular foods. Others who were quite open minded about new tastes and flavours may start to become neophobic (afraid of new foods). Such behaviour can be extremely trying and stressful for parents, leading them to resort to all manner of ways to encourage children to eat a healthy diet. However, such good intentions may not always have the desired approach according to the reviews author, leading psychologist, Professor David Benton of the University of Wales Swansea.
Professor Benton urges parents not to worry about children’s fear of new foods. “It’s a completely normal response” he explains. “It’s a survival mechanism. Once children start walking, neophobioa discourages them from eating foods which may be poisonous. It doesn’t mean that your child is a poor eater. Thankfully it’s something that most children grow out of with time, but it is a big problem for parents trying to get children to try and accept new foods”.
1) Benton D (2004) Role of parents in the determination of the food preferences of children and the development of obesity. International Journal of Obesity. 28. 858-869.
2) We are born with a preference for sweet and salty foods and a disliking for sour or bitter foods as well as a preference for foods high in energy. Facial expressions of newborn babies when exposed to these flavours suggest that this liking is innate.
Hannah Theobald | alfa
Laser activated gold pyramids could deliver drugs, DNA into cells without harm
24.03.2017 | Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences
What does congenital Zika syndrome look like?
24.03.2017 | University of California - San Diego
Astronomers from Bonn and Tautenburg in Thuringia (Germany) used the 100-m radio telescope at Effelsberg to observe several galaxy clusters. At the edges of these large accumulations of dark matter, stellar systems (galaxies), hot gas, and charged particles, they found magnetic fields that are exceptionally ordered over distances of many million light years. This makes them the most extended magnetic fields in the universe known so far.
The results will be published on March 22 in the journal „Astronomy & Astrophysics“.
Galaxy clusters are the largest gravitationally bound structures in the universe. With a typical extent of about 10 million light years, i.e. 100 times the...
Researchers at the Goethe University Frankfurt, together with partners from the University of Tübingen in Germany and Queen Mary University as well as Francis Crick Institute from London (UK) have developed a novel technology to decipher the secret ubiquitin code.
Ubiquitin is a small protein that can be linked to other cellular proteins, thereby controlling and modulating their functions. The attachment occurs in many...
In the eternal search for next generation high-efficiency solar cells and LEDs, scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory and their partners are creating...
Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are less stable. Now researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have, for the first time ever, produced a composite material combining silicon nanosheets and a polymer that is both UV-resistant and easy to process. This brings the scientists a significant step closer to industrial applications like flexible displays and photosensors.
Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are...
Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to simulate these confined natural conditions in artificial vesicles for the first time. As reported in the academic journal Small, the results are offering better insight into the development of nanoreactors and artificial organelles.
Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to...
20.03.2017 | Event News
14.03.2017 | Event News
07.03.2017 | Event News
24.03.2017 | Materials Sciences
24.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
24.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy