Questions and Answers
Typically, vegetables are children’s least liked foods and so Tiny Tastes was specifically designed to help parents to introduce them. However, the Tiny Tastes method can be applied to any ‘problem’ food and indeed many parents have told us that they have used the technique to introduce a variety of food types from fruit to fish.
The research behind Tiny Tastes was conducted with children aged from approximately 3 to 6 years, but the techniques have been successfully applied in younger and older age groups, and even in adults. The only adaptation necessary would be to identify age-appropriate rewards, since the motivating effect of stickers appears to diminish with age!
The beauty of Tiny Tastes lies in its practicality and simplicity. Everything needed to implement the program is contained in a colorful folder complete with simple-to-follow instructions.
I do not foresee any particular challenges.
There is growing evidence that the early years of life are when life-long eating habits and food preferences are formed. Consequently, I have started to look at the weaning period, when solid foods are first offered, as a window of opportunity for introducing less intrinsically likeable foods such as the stronger tasting vegetables. A European Union-funded project in which I am a partner has been testing an intervention using a variety of vegetables as first foods with some promising results emerging from the data.