|Budget Amount *help
¥2,900,000 (Direct Cost : ¥2,900,000)
Fiscal Year 1998 : ¥900,000 (Direct Cost : ¥900,000)
Fiscal Year 1997 : ¥2,000,000 (Direct Cost : ¥2,000,000)
1. With 130 nursery-school children between the ages of one and three years (74 boys, 56 girls between 18 and 41 months) as subjects, we conducted "guardian observations and eating surveys of mealtime in households, " "taste sensitivity tests, " and "infant development surveys, " investigating the effects of eating behavior in the initial stages of infancy on the sense of taste and mental development. We found no statistically significant correlation between the eating situation in infancy and the taste sensitivity of the children, except sensitivity to salty flavors. Between the eating situation of theinitial stages of infancy and mental development, however, a significant correlation was observed in four to five among a total of six developmental categories. A healthful eating situation in infancy had a positive effect on mental development (e.g., basic habits, language formation, language comprehension). From this information, it seems that eating habits at home in infancy exert almost no influence on taste sensitivity, except for salty flavors, but it is possible that there may be an effect on mental development.
2. We twice visited the homes of 33 children between the ages of one and two years (20 boys, 13 girls between 18 and 29 months), during which time we observed eating circumstances (language forination, expressions when eating, and manner of eating, etc.), taking video footage of thesituation. With these children as well, we conducted "taste sensitivity tests, " and "development and disposition evaluations." With regard to the video footage we took of the eating circumstances, we analyzed language for mation, facial expressions, and so on, and investigated the relationship between "language formation, " "taste sensitivity, " and "disposition." In such eating circumstances, we observed a mutual correlation between the mother's expressions of praise and the child's disposition (moodiness, approachability, adaptability, level of response, quality of mood).