Repeated exposure to models' positive facial expressions whilst eating a raw vegetable increases children's consumption of the modelled vegetable

Katie L. Edwards*, Jason M. Thomas, Suzanne Higgs, Jacqueline Blissett

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Exposing children to adults eating a raw vegetable with positive facial expressions (‘positive modelling’) increases children's consumption of the modelled vegetable. However, whether repeated versus a single exposure to positive modelling enhances this effect, and whether it generalises to a non-modelled vegetable, remains to be examined. Hence, this study examined the effect of a single exposure, versus repeated, exposure to positive modelling on children's acceptance and intake of a modelled and non-modelled vegetable. Children aged 5–6 years (N = 153; 81 males, 72 females) were randomised to one of three conditions in which they had i) a single or ii) repeated exposure to a video of adults eating raw broccoli with positive facial expressions or iii) were exposed to a no-food control video. Children's acceptance (measured as willingness to try and number of tastes), intake and liking of a modelled (raw broccoli) and non-modelled vegetable (raw mangetout) were measured. Children had greater raw broccoli consumption and liking if they had received repeated exposure to positive modelling, compared to children who had received a single exposure, but not compared to children in the control condition. Children's mangetout intake was greater in the single (versus repeated) positive condition, but this effect was not dependent on time. There was no effect on children's vegetable acceptance. Repeatedly exposing children to adults enjoying a vegetable encourages children's intake of the modelled vegetable in comparison to a single exposure. Thus, repeated exposure to others' food enjoyment may be a practical and useful strategy to encourage children's vegetable consumption.
Original languageEnglish
Article number101872
Number of pages10
JournalEating Behaviors
Early online date22 Mar 2024
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2024

Bibliographical note

Copyright © 2024 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (


  • Children
  • Facial expressions
  • Modelling
  • Vegetable acceptance
  • Vegetable intake


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