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Why Do Kids Like What They Like?

Why Do Kids Like What They Like?

There are a lot of things about teaching kids to eat right that parents misunderstand. Here’s one: Despite excellent evidence that taste preferences are largely learned—note that I said, “largely” not “entirely”—most parents I encounter believe that their job is to figure out what their children like. And then to feed it to them.

How do I know this? I spend a lot of time asking parents why they serve what they serve. The most common responses I get are: “Because she likes it,” and the popular variation, “Because I know she’ll eat it.”

In other words, parents think kids come out of the shoot liking what they like. Score one for nature.

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