To eat or not to eat…

I suppose in a way we are all fussy or picky eaters but it’s to what extent? By the time we are adults we know roughly what we like and what we don’t so does that really make us picky?

There is always something we take a disliking too as children, it’s a time where we are learning new tastes and smells so we are sensitive to lots of things. One bad experience can stay with us for the rest of our lives.

Many children leave behind their quirky eating habits as they get older. But “what is less certain are the predictors of who will remain a picky eater in adulthood,”

Nancy Zucker, a psychologist and director of the Duke Center for Eating Disorders .New York Times 2016

Vegetables are at the tops of most adults lists, as is fruit like bananas and raisins. Junk food rarely makes it as it has so many positive associations through childhood treats. Researching more I found a world of extremes and eating disorders which I suppose you have to admit it is – controlling your food is natural but there are times when you can take it a bit too far.

The causes of long-term picky eating, however, remain poorly understood. In some cases, a childhood dining scare from choking or vomiting may cause lingering fear of one or more foods. “Food memories are very powerful memories,” Dr. Zucker said, adding that social anxiety associated with picky eating seems to increase with age. Other people may have a heightened sensitivity “or even somewhat distorted perception to certain tastes and smells,” said Juyun Lim, an associate professor of food science and technology at Oregon State University whose research has focused on the role of the senses in food preferences. All foods contain tens to hundreds of volatile compounds that determine aroma and flavor, she said. But the same food can be perceived differently by two individuals.

For me the texture of onions and mushrooms are my cryptonite – I cannot stand them! This however doesn’t mean I use that excuse to pick them out of everything (its just not practical) I just have to put them to one side on the plate and move on. I appreciate there will people who will argue its not so easy to just put it to one side, there may be some kind of trauma which is distorting the logic, but it can be done with some practice, CBT and understanding friends and family.

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