Whom to Blame for Brain Health and Appetite Slump in Toddlers? A Narrative Review

Vidya Seshan, Blessy Prabha Valsaraj*, Divya Raghavan, Judie Arulappan, Gerald Amandu Matua, Sofia Cyril, Emi John Prince

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

Abstract

Food preference in children depends on the interplay between genetic and environmental factors. Exposure to flavors during prenatal and postnatal period through amniotic fluid, breast milk, and weaning foods have been identified as possible influences on food preference and acceptance in children. Therefore, maternal nutrition has a strong influence on the child's food preference early in life. Aim: The authors carried out a narrative review to understand the contribution of maternal nutrition on the food preferences in children in later life. Methods: The authors retrieved the articles from SCOPUS, Medline, Science Direct, CINAHL, EBSCO, and PubMed central databases. The key words including food preferences, food choice, and acceptance of food, pregnant women, toddlers, and food culture were used to identify the appropriate articles. The authors included in the review, full-Text articles, published in English language between 1995 and 2018. In total, six articles, which met the inclusion criteria, were included in the final review. Results: The results revealed that there is a very strong connection between the exposure to flavors during prenatal and postnatal period and food preference and acceptance in children in later life. The olfactory and gustatory exposures to flavors during prenatal period through maternal diet, and during postnatal period through breast milk and weaning foods determines the food preferences in childhood. Conclusion: We conclude that maternal nutrition has a strong influence on the child's food preference early in the life, therefore effective strategies should be designed to increase healthy feeding choices during the prenatal and postnatal periods.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)242-246
Number of pages5
JournalInternational Journal of Nutrition, Pharmacology, Neurological Diseases
Volume12
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1 2022

Keywords

  • Appetite slump
  • brain health
  • food preference
  • maternal feeding habits
  • weaning foods

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nutrition and Dietetics
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Pharmacology (medical)

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