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Why Don’t We All Like The Same Food?

Humans can eat pretty much anything – but the reality is we don’t. CrowdScience discovers how biology and culture shape our culinary tastes.

Humans have the potential to eat pretty much anything – but the reality is we don’t. Wherever we live in the world, we eat just a small fraction of the foodstuffs available and show strong preferences for certain foods over others. Those preferences can change dramatically from person to person, or as the saying goes – one man’s meat is another man’s poison. Then at the extreme end of the spectrum you get so-called ‘fussy eaters’ who reject so many foods that they are confined to beige diets of crisps, crackers and cereal.

So why do we show such different preferences for food? And why are some people fussier than others? That’s what CrowdScience listeners Orante Andrijauskaite in Germany and Anna Nicolaou in Belgium would like to know, and what Datshiane Navanayagam is off to find out.

She discovers how both biology and culture shape whether a food is disgusting or delicious and learns why we should stop giving children a hard time about finishing their dinner. She also learns how global cuisines evolved and what that can teach us about helping fussy eaters to overcome their food fears.

Presenter: Datshiane Navanayagam
Producer: Anna Lacey

(Photo: Fried Bugs in Bangkok night market. Credit: Getty Images)

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27 minutes

Last on

Mon 7 May 2018 14:32GMT


  • Fri 4 May 2018 19:32GMT
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