Eating Styles: A Developmental Overview

  • Ronald S. Drabman
  • Glenn Cordua y Cruz


Recent comparisons between the eating styles of normal and obese children have shown that obese school-age children may have a significantly different eating style than the nonobese children (3, 9). Studies of adults’ eating behavior, on the other hand, have been somewhat less conclusive. Contradictory findings have been reported recently, with some researchers finding the obese have faster eating rates (6, 9, 10) and others reporting the absence of an increased eating rate (1). The importance of establishing the existence of the presumed differences in eating style is related to the validation of the behaviors selected for modification. In other words, we need to determine if the eating behaviors frequently selected for modification are in fact different in the obese and the normal. This is the first step in establishing the validity of the “eat more slowly” instructions found in behavioral programs (7, 11, 12). Additionally, there is the potential of using naturally occurring differences in eating styles as a means of identifying and following infants and children at risk for obesity. For these and other reasons, we have begun a series of studies designed to isolate and measure the differences in the eating styles of obese and normal children.


Eating Behavior Obese Child Eating Rate Bite Rate Eating Style 
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Copyright information

© Spectrum Publications, Inc. 1981

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ronald S. Drabman
  • Glenn Cordua y Cruz

There are no affiliations available

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