Mac and cheese – universally loved?

800px-Spoonful_of_cerealI read an article in Canvas, cribbed from Psychology Today, a while ago about the strange eating habits people have. Nearly 20 per cent of people are repelled by raw tomatoes. Nearly the same amount just don’t like trying new foods, and 60 per cent of us eat just about the same thing for breakfast every day. I know I do! I used to eat cereal and toast when I was young. Then I used to just eat toast, then I switched to cereal. This year has been bitterly cold though and I’ve switched to porridge just because I don’t want to be pouring icy cold milk down my throat first thing when I get up. (Yes, I actually kind of like porridge, loaded with brown sugar).

800px-Macaroni&cheese&veggiesI get really, insanely strong food cravings, and sometimes I can literally smell and taste whatever it is I want. Sometimes it’s sweet, like donuts or cheesecake or cookies. Sometimes it’s hearty, like pasta or stew. Sometimes it’s just plain trashy, like food court fried rice or butter chicken. It’s hardly ever something that’s really good for me, like sushi or salad (although I do enjoy both of those). There are all kinds of theories about food cravings, like craving a certain kind of flavour = lack of this or that nutrient in your diet. But this article reckoned cravings have more to do with culture and childhood than anything else.

There’s a lot of things I never ate growing up, and I just don’t see the appeal now. Like rice pudding, Dr Pepper, jerky, pork belly, crackling, jelly and lollies. (Don’t get me wrong, I love chocolate in virtually all its incarnations. But I just don’t like lollies much; I think it’s the super plasticky, fake texture. I do, however, quite like sour lolllies on occasion don’t ask me why). And seriously, something as wobbly as jelly just shouldn’t be consumed!

Apparently, foods that are almost universally liked are fried chicken, fries, chocolate, cookies and packet mac and cheese – apparently people seem to respond to the orange colour, ha. Jeepers. Not one remotely healthy thing on that list!

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