The aim of our study was to evaluate the efficacy and acceptability of a taste exposure-plus-reward intervention delivered through mailed materials and access to an online video.
It was hypothesised that parents in the intervention condition would successfully implement the exposure and reward protocol with their children, resulting in increased intake and liking of the target vegetable.
A randomized controlled design compared a protocol of parent-administered taste exposure sessions with a no-treatment control condition. Participants were families with 3- to 4- year old children. Parents were asked to select a vegetable that their children didn't like and which was easily edible without cooking. Parents in the intervention group were sent an information pack containing exposure instructions, progress charts and stickers. The exposure instructions asked parents to offer the child a single very small piece of their target vegetable every day for 14 days, allowing the child to choose a sticker as a reward if they tried it. Parents were asked to ensure that the child understood that the sticker was a reward for tasting the target vegetable. Parents were also directed to a website with an online video featuring a demonstration of the intervention procedure. Intake and liking of target vegetable were assessed twice pre-intervention and at post-intervention.
Journal article: https://jandonline.org/article/S2212-2672(13)01254-9/fulltext.