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The Huron University College Journal of Learning and Motivation

Authors

Alyse Gilboord

Abstract

Eating is an element of human survival that occurs in one's everyday life. Although there has been a small amount of literature concerning food cravings, the idea that it is a signal of bodily needs is a widespread belief (Weingarten & Elston, 1991). Individuals tend to prefer sweet and salty foods as opposed to other food groups. When it comes to gender there has been a clear difference in preference towards various food groups. It has been found that females prefer sweet foods and males prefer salty foods (As cited by Zeller et al. 1999). This ides has been contributed to many factors including the innate preference in males and females towards various food groups. It was hypothesized that men would outperform women when it came to performance on a word search task for a food reward. Conversely it was hypothesized that women would perform worse on the word search task with the food reward than the sticker reward. Results indicated that females performance means (M = 13.4, SD = 3.67) were also significantly higher than males performance means (M = 9.00, SD = 2.75) in the food reward condition t (18) = 3.04, p < .05, d= 1.36. An independent samples t-test indicated that there was no significant difference between females in the food group versus the sticker reward group t (18) = - .61, p > .05. Women's performance in the sticker reward group (M = 14.5, SD = 4.43) was slightly higher than in the food reward group (M = 13.4, SD = 3.67).


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