Important announcement for
• The exam will be computer graded. You
MUST bring a #2 pencil (preferably one
with an eraser) or you will not be able to
fill out an answer sheet.
• I will have some pencils, without
erasers, available on a first come, first-
How flexible are our eating habits?
Instinct vs. learning in food choice
Biology of taste preferences
Restrict advertising primarily directed to young children of
eight years and under.
Policymakers need to take steps to better protect young children from exposure to
advertising because of the inherent unfairness of advertising to audiences who lack
the capability to evaluate biased sources of information found in television
* Investigate how young children comprehend and are
influenced by advertising in new interactive media environments
such as the internet.
* Examine the influence of advertising directed to children in
the school and classroom.
Such advertising may exert more powerful influence because of greater
attention to the message or because of an implicit endorsement effect
associated with advertising viewed in the school setting.
of American Psychological Association
Task Force on Advertising and Children (2004)
Advertising to Youth
Vulnerability at age of susceptibility to formation
of taste preferences and addictions
• Approximately eight out of ten of adult smokers
started smoking when they were adolescents
(Centers for Disease Control, 2004). Nicotine
addiction is more likely to occur when first use occurs
at a young age (Substance Abuse and Mental Health
Services Administration, 2004).
Can our food preferences be imprinted like our social behaviors?
“Flavor programming” in infants:
Preference for dairy vs. protein hydrolysate-based formula (Nutramigen) is
shaped over 7 weeks’ exposure
Can Taste Preferences be
Learned in the Womb?
J.A. Menella et al. 2001
• Pregnant women given water or carrot juice
to drink (300 ml/day, 4 days/week) during last
trimester and/or first 2 mo. of nursing
• Carrot flavor is distinct and known (like garlic,
anise) to be transmitted to human milk
• Determine whether infant’s hedonic response
to carrot-flavored cereal is influenced by pre-
or postnatal exposure to the flavor
Mennella, J. A. et al. Pediatrics 2001;107:e88
Pre- and post-natal exposure shapes infants’ tastes
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