(NaturalNews) A truly inspirational study carried out by a small team of researchers found that there is more to consuming vegetables than meets the eye: Is there anything else that veggies can change about a person other than their nutrient intake? The answer, now according to science, is yes.
Veggies influence how we feel about others
Practitioners of naturopathy and holistic living have often stressed the importance that high quality foods can have on all aspects of life, and now science finally backs this claim. The research, carried out by Brian Wansink, Misturu Shimizu and Adam Brumberg, shows that adding vegetables to our diets can alter our perception about food, ourselves and the person who prepares the meal. As such, there must be a strong psychological component to eating veggies, the researchers argued.
To test this hypothesis, the scientists conducted a series of interviews, as well as a nation-wide survey of 500 mothers with two or more underage children. One part of the research had respondents associate the meal preparer with a series of adjectives, such as "selfish" or "loving," based solely on having eaten their food.
Food tastes better with veggies
Surprisingly, one of the most striking results of the study was that vegetables can improve the taste of foods. Until now, many people (including former president George H. W. Bush, who openly hated broccoli) claimed that veggies don't taste as good as other food items, like fried chicken and fries. However, most study participants gave significantly higher ratings to the meals that contained vegetables, in contrast to steak, pasta and fried chicken, which received the worst overall ratings. In fact, broccoli was one of the vegetables that helped improve the rating of foods.
The preparers of vegetable dishes also received much better descriptions, including adjectives like "attentive," "capable" and "thoughtful," which prompted the researchers to conclude that veggies can really make or break a meal.
Interestingly, one of the questions in the survey asked participants to state what their child's favorite vegetable is. Over a dozen different vegetables were mentioned, yet again, broccoli took the crown as the most popular vegetable among older children, while carrots appeared more desirable to younger kids.
At the end of the study, the researchers jokingly concluded that if a high nutritional content is not a good motivator, then the fact that adding veggies to meals can make a cook become loved at home, should do the trick. Jokes aside, any means of increasing vegetable consumption, especially among children, is worthy of consideration, both for the nutritional and emotional benefits.
About the author: Raw Michelle is a natural health blogger and researcher, sharing her passions with others, using the Internet as her medium. She discusses topics in a straight forward way in hopes to help people from all walks of life achieve optimal health and well-being. She has authored and published hundreds of articles on topics such as the raw food diet and green living in general.