Adult Picky Eaters UK

For Picky-Eating Adults in the UK and worldwide

Picky Eaters Gone By August 15, 2007

Filed under: General — Claire @ 11:02 am

It has been postulated anecdotally that Selective Eating may have a genetic component.  To my amazement, it turns out that an uncle of mine (who has lived abroad all my life) also has a degree of pickiness, and a great uncle too, who died before I was born.  Which proves nothing of course, but got me thinking.

If Adult Picky Eating is not a new phenomenon (and some of you are in your 50s and 60s, I know), however did picky eaters from earlier generations manage?  Could it be that they were simply not expected, pre-globalisation, to eat or try anything like the variety of foods we are exposed to in the 21st century? 

Was it easier for them to have to turn down fruits and vegetables only in season, instead of all-year round?  Or was it harder in those days to maintain a diet of mainly bread and potatoes, when there were fewer available alternatives to supplement one’s diet with?  

Did anyone even have to know that these people didn’t like curry, before it had migrated out of its native land?  I wonder if they could have even passed unnoticed. 


4 Responses to “Picky Eaters Gone By”

  1. Jack Says:

    Intersting thought, as the world and our tables have changed.
    I know of no one in my family tree that was even close to be considered picky. I have always been the grand champion.
    I was raised in a mostly meat/fish & potatoes enviornment. A rare treat was Chinees takeout (not for me) or meatballs & spagetti (spagetti was OK for me but not my father)dinner.
    Salad was something served in the summer and ony women ate it. Soup was the winter staple (chicken noodle & tomato for me).

    It is very possible that back in the day, some of the adults that lived on these staples and thought I was so terrible, had there own eating issues. Hmmmm…..

  2. Amy Says:

    THe thing I have noticed (reading the comments here as well as from observing my husbands eating habits) is that most “picky” eaters have the basics secure in the menu of their daily life. Some sort of meat, bread (probably white) and potatos, or perhaps pasta.
    On this continenent those are the staples you can find on any table in last 100 years or more. Perhaps because they are the staples of your background genetics plays a part in telling your brain that these foods won’t likely kill you. Years ago (as recent as 50 I would say) there was less variety, and fruits and veggies were seasonal. Even restaurants were not serving anything exotic (be it spice or style) and if it was it was the entire restaurant and it was likely labelled obviously like “Le Bistro Fancypants Frenchfood” or what have you. You could easily get away with saying that you don’t like frenchfood, or in regular restaurants if asked why you always order the hamburger & fries or the fish& chips you can easily say it’s your favourite. No one could tell the difference its not like more adventurous food was really available at the local supermarket.
    These days food is like a fad… sushi, grilled pizza, and so someone is always trying something new and pushing it on everyone if they enjoyed it. Suddenly it becomes apparent that there are more and more things that a certain person doesn’t like, and not only that – won’t even try! The scrutiny is turned to the “picky” guy and everyone wonders what is the big deal.
    In years gone by it would be the opposite and guys like Jack here could say to the person wondering whats wrong with him “you go ahead and eat that foreign food! I know where my flag flies” or some other patriotic statement and the other men would chuckle and clink his beer, and think that Jack is real man!

  3. Marla Says:

    Once read a doctor say that if you could only eat 2 foods in the world, the 2 best would be MILK & POTATOES. Anyhow, I’m nearly 49 years old, in VERY good health and have NEVER eaten meat, fruits or veggies in my life!! (except for CRISPY bacon)… French fries are my main meal! It’s a social nightmare, however, I’m happy & healthy and have 2 teen boys — the oldest (a 16 yr old) eats the same…actually WORSE…. mainly cereal, milk, chips & cookies — that’s IT!! I’m big on white bread, as well. I believe that this is a neurological condition, similar to what autistic children suffer from… It surely “seems” psychological, but I believe it is purely neurological, and 100% involuntary, which is why I have a problem with the label “picky eaters” — I say we ALL meet somewhere and have a great big bread & french fry convention!!!

  4. Charlotte Says:

    My uncle used to be a picky eater until he was around 13, and my brother has severe autism. I’m sure there’s an autistic component to this, at least for me.

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