Picky Eating May Be in Their Genes

Kids inherit reaction to unfamiliar foods, new study says
By Wesley Oliver,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 21, 2007 4:53 PM CDT
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(Newser) – Don't chide your kids for their picky eating habits—they may be as much your fault as the length of their noses. In a study of identical and fraternal twins, UK researchers found children inherited nearly 80% of their “food neophobia,” hinting that that tongue-out reaction to unfamiliar eats might be in the genes.

The hesitation to eat icky new foods might even be an evolutionary mechanism, Reuters explains. Identical twins, who share all of their genes, were much more likely to have similar “food neophobia” tendencies than fraternal twins, who share just half of their genes. Researchers say parents can overcome the phobia by consistently offering their kids new food.