The Role of Personality Traits and Mood in Taste Preference among University Students

Habiba Arif (BS, 2014-2018) Supervisor: Saira Khan

University: Institute of Applied Psychology, Punjab University, Lahore, Pakistan

Corresponding Address: Department of Applied Psychology, University of the Punjab, Lahore, Pakistan. Email: chairperson@appsy.pu.edu.pk, Phone: 92-42-9231245

Abstract:

The current study conducted to investigate the relationship between personality traits, mood and taste preference in university students. It was hypothesized that there would be relationship between certain personality traits and taste preference. Likewise it was hypothesized that pleasant mood would be positively related to taste preference for salt, sweet, spicy and sour tastes; conscientiousness and agreeableness would predict sour taste preference and also that agreeableness would predict negatively bitter taste preference. Finally, it was hypothesized that extraversion, agreeableness and openness would predict salt taste preference. The sample comprised of 170 university students (N = 170), 83 men and 87 women with age range 18-25 years (M = 21.39, SD = 1.60). Data was collected online through google form. The Urdu version of Big Five Inventory-l O (Yousaf & Kausar, 2014), Brief Mood Introspection Scale (Mayers & Gaschke, 1988) and a self-constructed Taste Preference Scale were used to assess personality traits, mood and taste preference, respectively. Data was analyzed using Pearson product moment correlation and multiple regression through SPSS. The results suggested that some specific personality traits predicted specific taste preferences such as agreeableness positively predicted salty, sour, and sweet taste preferences while negatively predicted bitter taste preference. Likewise, conscientiousness also predicted sour taste preference. As well as extraversion predicted salty taste preference. On the other hand, pleasant mood was also shown to be a positive predictor of salty, sweet, spicy, and sour taste preference. The present research will be useful in health settings in order to design diet plans for obese individuals according to their personality and related food choices.

Keywords: Personality traits, mood, taste preference.

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