Japanese children's awareness of the effects of psychological taste experiences on biological processes

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Abstract

    The present study examined Japanese children's and adults' awareness of the effects of psychological taste experiences on biological processes such as growth and illness. Studies 1 and 2 showed the following: (1) preschoolers tended to assume that good-tasting experiences would make one grow taller and gain more weight, while adults seldom accepted such ideas. Concerning illness, participants in all age groups were reluctant to accept the effects of taste experiences. (2) Process-dependent awareness (i.e., effects of psychological factors were assumed to depend on biological processes) was observed not only among young children, but also in older children and adults. Compared with younger children, adults' responses were more process sensitive. (3) When adults explained why they assumed that different taste experiences would lead to different bodily states, they often relied on vitalistic causality. The use of vitalistic concepts was uncommon among children. Finally, (4) Japanese participants seem to be more likely than Americans to assume that bad-tasting experiences would make them non-resistant to a cold.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)408-419
    Number of pages12
    JournalInternational Journal of Behavioral Development
    Volume40
    Issue number5
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2016 Sep 1

    Fingerprint

    Biological Phenomena
    Psychology
    experience
    illness
    Japanese studies
    psychological factors
    causality
    Causality
    Weight Gain
    age group
    Young Adult
    Age Groups
    Growth

    Keywords

    • childhood development
    • food
    • Knowledge
    • naive biology
    • preschoolers

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Developmental and Educational Psychology

    Cite this

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    title = "Japanese children's awareness of the effects of psychological taste experiences on biological processes",
    abstract = "The present study examined Japanese children's and adults' awareness of the effects of psychological taste experiences on biological processes such as growth and illness. Studies 1 and 2 showed the following: (1) preschoolers tended to assume that good-tasting experiences would make one grow taller and gain more weight, while adults seldom accepted such ideas. Concerning illness, participants in all age groups were reluctant to accept the effects of taste experiences. (2) Process-dependent awareness (i.e., effects of psychological factors were assumed to depend on biological processes) was observed not only among young children, but also in older children and adults. Compared with younger children, adults' responses were more process sensitive. (3) When adults explained why they assumed that different taste experiences would lead to different bodily states, they often relied on vitalistic causality. The use of vitalistic concepts was uncommon among children. Finally, (4) Japanese participants seem to be more likely than Americans to assume that bad-tasting experiences would make them non-resistant to a cold.",
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