If someone offered you a jabuticaba fruit (like those pictured above), would you pop it right in your mouth without asking what it tastes like? Can you get past pairing peanut butter with only jelly and give it a try with jalapeno pepper and bacon? For a foodie experience, would you eat a cricket or cheese that had been covered in maggots?
If so, you’re probably an adventurous eater, and a new study says it may be contributing to a healthy lifestyle. A Cornell Food and Brand Lab study looked at 501 diverse young women to measure “eating adventurousness, perceptions of novel foods, lifestyle and psychological characteristics, and BMI.”
The food neophiles (adventurous eaters) were found to have lower BMIs (body mass index). They were also more likely “to cook to connect with their heritage, host friends for dinner, be physically active, and be concerned about the healthfulness of food, when compared to non-adventurous eaters.”
Dr. Brian Wansink, author of "Mindless Eating" and one of the authors of the study, explains how this seems counterintuitive and also says that adventurous eaters “seem to have a lot more fun in life.”
Do these findings have any practical application? The study concludes that “promoting adventurous eating in adults could help individuals lose/maintain weight without feeling restricted.”