Fetuses Appear to Smile for Carrots But Frown at Kale, England Research Lab Finds Through Ultrasounds

on left, ultrasound of fetus with a smile, on right, ultrasound of fetus with frown
Researchers at Durham University

Researchers found that fetuses expressed “laughter-faces” and “cry-faces.”

A research lab based out of a university in England has discovered fetuses appear to not mind eating their vegetables— so long as that vegetable isn't kale. 

Durham University’s Fetal Neonatal Research Lab in northeast England recently published their research that shows the first evidence of fetuses reacting to smells and tastes while in the womb. 

In the study, researchers gave 100 pregnant women either a carrot or kale capsule and then did a 4K ultrasound on them to examine the reactions of their fetuses. 

The researchers observed certain muscle movements that correlate to either a “laughter-face” or a “cry-face” response. 

Majority of the fetuses expressed a laugher-face when their mother was given the carrot capsule. And most fetuses expressed a "cry-face" similar to a grimace when their mother received the kale.

A fetus can taste the flavor of a capsule through the mother's amniotic fluid when it is swallowed or inhaled, officials said.

Researchers said their findings suggest that a pregnant woman's diet may determine what food preferences their babies may have and could influence future healthy eating habits. 

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