Field of Science

Eat your vegetables!

If your Mother didn't ever yell at you to eat your vegetables, well, let's just say it's a given part of growing up. Now of course my Mom's motivation was to get you to eat right, and it was such a struggle until you finally realized that your Mother's idea of cooking was to cook everything into submission, and when properly cooked, why vegetables were much better tasting and way more appealing. Funny, the only thing that was actually cooked properly was sweet corn, and that was my Father's special province.
In order to maintain good relationships with my colleagues in the pseudosciences, the Phactor tries not to criticize their research, but this particular study caught my attention (HT to The Thoughtful Animal).
Eating for Pleasure or Profit: The Effect of Incentives on Children’s Enjoyment of Vegetables (Psychological Science 2011 Feb 1;22(2):190-6.)
The experiment, which included controls (yea!), involved giving children rewards (tangible but non-edible, tangible & edible (desert), repeated exposure without reward, and a control. Where was the yelling Mother? OK, pretty unrealistic, but still, OK. The experiment involved having children sample carrot, red pepper, sugar snap pea, cabbage, cucumber, or celery. Well, my plant oriented readers will notice right away that only the 3 Cs are vegetables (carrot, cabbage, celery). And psychologists still think sex and gender are the same thing too.
Ah well, Rome wasn't built in a day. Oh, yeah, the rewards worked. But, if memory serves me, so did yelling.

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