Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Food Neophobia

Food neophobia is the tendency to avoid novel foods and prefer familiar foods. I feel as if almost everyone experiences a type of this within their lifetime. I remember as a child I would not eat anything that my mother would not eat because it was a different type of food or it was an unfamiliar type of food. But as I got older, I steered away from that type of behavior and I explored different types of food. People are afraid to go out of the box because they feel safe and protected with the ways that they currently practice.
Two factors have been shown to contribute to rejection or acceptance of fruits and vegetables: food neophobia and picky eating, especially in children. Due to the relationship between picky eating and food neophobia, some factors, such as pressure to eat, personality factors, parental practices or feeding styles and social influences, will have similar effects on both magnitude and duration of expression of these behaviors. On the other hand, these constructs may be differentially affected by factors such as age, tactile defensiveness, environment and culture. Many different factors come into play when we talk about neophobia and picky eating when it comes to children.


  1. I picked to respond to this post because my son who is almost six seems to fit this. I’m hoping he grows out of it. My son Landon doesn’t eat meat except for bacon. My son loves vegetables though so I’m happy for that. My son loves to drink V8! I ensure I buy the V8 with less salt though. I continue to try and push meat tor him (especially chicken) but I keep falling short. Another food my son doesn’t eat yet is seafood but I can’t say a word because I don’t eat seafood at all. I’m hoping one day my son will expand his taste into meat. Thanks for the post.

  2. I find it interesting so many parents struggle with this. While I'm not a parent myself, I can recall how my parents raised me. Especially my father, heavily influenced my siblings and I to eat a variety of healthy foods. The result? I now enjoy eating almost everything. I am far from a "picky eater" and I love fruits and vegetables, doesn't necessarily mean I eat them enough, but I love them nonetheless. Good post, Caitlyn!