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date: 16 September 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter reviews factors influencing the development of child taste and food preferences. It begins with a literature review of the earliest flavor preferences for sweet, salty, and bitter tastes during infancy and the effect of early exposure to infant formulas on the later taste preferences. The effects of exposure frequency, food experience, role modeling, parenting styles, and mass media are followed by behavioral techniques to modify children’s food preferences. The final section summarizes commonly used assessments of infant and child food preferences. It is concluded that exposure plays a critical role in shaping children’s taste and food preferences.

Keywords: child development, exposure, food preferences, neophobia, parental feeding styles, taste preferences

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