Conditioned Taste Aversion

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Kendra’s Psychology Blog
Kendra Cherry
, Guide to Psychology

What Is a Conditioned Taste Aversion?

Wednesday June 16, 2010

I once had an acquaintance who told a very vivid story about eating a chicken enchilada while on vacation. Hours after eating the enchilada, she became violently ill. For years after that, she was unable to bring herself to eat a chicken enchilada and even felt queasy when she smelled foods that reminded her of that particular dish. This was despite the fact that she knew that her illness was not connected to eating that particular item. In reality, she had picked up a nasty virus from one of her travelling companions who had been ill just days before the trip.

Conditioned Taste Aversion
Taste aversions are quite common, and can sometimes last for several years.
Photo courtesy Matka Wariatka / iStockPhoto

These conditioned taste aversions are quite common and can last from a period of days to several years. Consider your own aversions to certain foods. Can you link your distaste for particular items to a period of illness, queasiness or nausea?

Learn more about the characteristics of taste aversions and why they occur.


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