Learning from Nutrients | Utah State University Extension

    Learning from Nutrients

    Do nutritious foods naturally taste good (innate) or do they taste good because they are nutritious (feedback)?

    We all like to eat foods that taste good. But why do foods taste good?


    Principle: Animals learn to eat foods that are nutritious and avoid foods that are low in nutrients. Their bodies tell them which foods are which based on feedback from the gut.

    Watch the Videos (on youtube)

    Feedback Nutrients

    Sheep That Love Straw

    Management implications

    New Foods. Managers can train animals to eat new foods or plants by adding nutrients and/or familiar flavors to plants and by limiting alternatives. See Introducing animals to new foods

    Unpalatable plants. Animals do not avoid foods because they taste bad. They avoid foods because they are novel, low in nutrients or they make animals sick. See Training animals to eat unpalatable plants

    Fact sheets

    Palatability more than a matter of taste

    Nutrients influence palatability