Relationship of Mothers’ Food Preferences and Attitudes with Children’s Preferences


Because early childhood is the most important time for establishing eating habits, controlling the likes and dislikes of children is significant. This study investigated the relationship between mothers’ food preferences as well as their attitudes toward food and their children’s preferences. A questionnaire was answered by 244 mothers of children aged 3-5 years who attended a private kindergarten in Japan. The mothers were asked questions relating to their own current food preferences and those during their childhoods, their eating and cooking habits, and the likes and dislikes of their children. Multiple logistic regression analysis was used to assess the relative importance of mothers’ preferences and habits for their children’s likes and dislikes. The children’s preferences were significantly related to their mothers’ likes and dislikes during childhood, rather than to their current preferences, and to the children’s breakfast times during holidays and the frequency with which the mothers used takeout meals. This suggests that mothers’ likes and dislikes during childhood and their food habits affect their children’s preferences. Therefore, to improve children’s food preferences, mothers may need to improve their food habits and consider their own food preferences during childhood.

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T. Osera, S. Tsutie, M. Kobayashi and N. Kurihara, "Relationship of Mothers’ Food Preferences and Attitudes with Children’s Preferences," Food and Nutrition Sciences, Vol. 3 No. 10, 2012, pp. 1461-1466. doi: 10.4236/fns.2012.310190.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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