Avid, Happy, Typical And Fussy Kids

According to new research from Aston University, UK, children fall broadly into four eating categories, and parents feed their children differently depending on those categories. The four categories are ‘avid’, ‘happy’, ‘typical’, and ‘fussy’. Typical eaters make up 44% of the children, while fussy eaters account for 16%. But around one in five young children show avid eating, including greater enjoyment of food, faster eating speed, and weaker sensitivity to internal cues of fullness. The behaviours that distinguish children with avid eating from those who show happy eating who have similarly positive responses to food, are wanting to eat, or eating more, in response to the sight, smell or taste of palatable food, and a higher level of emotional overeating. In combination, these eating behaviours can lead to overeating and subsequent weight gain.