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It also emerged people are typically put off food twice a week, and the likes of milk, bread and salad have even been thrown away due to simply not looking “edible”.
And more than a quarter admitted to being physically sick due to off putting food and drink.
Almost half describe themselves as a fussy eater, and a fifth are easily put off food.
As a result, 78 percent inspect edibles for bumps and imperfections before eating them.
The research was commissioned by long-life bakery brand, Baker Street, to find out how many Brits are facing up to food phobias in everyday life.
Baker Street commercial director, Chris McLaughlin, said: “It’s really interesting to see how many people are put off food and drink for different reasons.
“A third of the UK population have a fear or phobia of food.
Across the country, more than 20 million of us are facing foodie fears everyday, from soggy pizza bases to gristly meat and lumpy mashed potato
Chris McLaughlin, Baker Street Commercial Director
“That means, across the country, more than 20 million of us are facing foodie fears everyday, from soggy pizza bases to gristly meat and lumpy mashed potato.
“More than half the nation are put off by mouldy bread (53 percent) and it’s one of the most wasted food items in UK households.
“Baker Street’s extended life range means that we’re helping millions of people to avoid coming face-to-face with their fears and helping reduce food waste.”
The study also found half of people have refused to eat something that someone else made because it looked “off-putting”.
And top reasons for turning down a food or drink include worrying it’ll make them ill or feeling sick at the thought of eating it.
Nearly half (49 percent) admitted to disliking “soggy” foods, with crisps, bread and sandwiches the most likely to be left uneaten if they were wet.
As a result, a quarter of adults eat as quickly as possible, so their food doesn’t go soggy.
Aside from being put off foods, 14 percent claim they have a fear and 11 percent a phobia of specific edibles.
The top food fears were revealed as mayonnaise, cold meat and mushrooms.
Interestingly, those of us with fears are more put-off by texture and smell than by taste.
And reasons for having a phobia include having been sick from eating it in the past, disliking the texture and simply not liking the taste.
However, a third of those living with food phobias claim they exist because they don’t understand why we consume it (29 percent), while a further quarter simply disagree that it should be consumed at all (26 percent).
In order to avoid such horror-inducing foods, 55 percent of those with a genuine fear avoid having the item in their house, 51 percent refuse to even cook it for friends and family, and 41 percent actively avoid its aisle in a supermarket.
And of those polled via OnePoll, 58 percent are also put off by the sound of other people eating.
Chris added: “It’s crazy to think that so many of us avoid so many different types of foods – and to see so many sauces and condiments in the top 10 fears took us all by surprise.”
The most squeamish eaters can be found in Aberdeen where two-thirds (63 percent) claim to have been so put off by a food or drink they’ve been physically sick, while the most hardy foodies are in Plymouth.
Meanwhile, those in Wales are more likely than anywhere else in the country to have a fear or phobia of food.
TOP 40 FOODS BRITS ARE “PUT OFF” BY:
- Mouldy bread
- Rotten vegetables
- Smelly meat
- Lumpy milk
- Gristly meat
- Furry cheese
- Bones in fish
- Fatty meat
- Green cheese
- Fish with the head still attached
- Bruised/brown bananas
- Bruised/brown apples
- Slimy carrot sticks
- Soggy bread
- Soft crisps
- Skin on top of a cup of tea or coffee
- Lumpy gravy
- Fish skin
- Soft biscuits
- Soft crackers
- Green crisps
- Hairy strawberries
- Soggy cereal
- Soggy pizza base
- Lumpy mashed potatoes
- Wilted spinach/salad
- Warm milk
- Stringy broad beans
- Dry cake
- Sprouted potatoes
- Fat on top of fresh milk
- Cold baked beans
- Chalky chocolate
- Warm cucumber
- Squashed sandwiches
- Orange pith
- Spotty satsumas
- Stringy avocado
- Juice with “bits” in
- Overcooked beef
TOP 10 FOODS PEOPLE HAVE A FEAR OR PHOBIA OF:
- Cold meat
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