Babies' Appetite Control

Babies' Appetite Control

Essex Babylab (University of Essex)

Who Can Participate

Babies and toddlers at 9 months (+/- 2 weeks), 12 months (+/- 1 calendar month) and 18 months (+/- 1 calendar month)

What Happens

You will answer questions about you and your child's typical behavior at home, with some specifically focusing on feeding and eating. You will also play three simple games with your child and be asked to report how your child responded. For the games, you will need to have some items at hand - i.e., your child's favorite food/snack, 2 non-see-through containers or boxes, a small toy that can be hidden under a container, 1 big and 1 small container, 5 small and 5 big spoons, and something to time (e.g., stopwatch on your phone). Using these items, you will ask your child to wait, sort things according to the size, and play a hide-and-find game. The study is for babies aged 9 months (+/- 2 weeks), 12 months (+/- 1 month) and 18 months (+/- 1 month). If your baby is 18 months of age, please take part ONLY if you have completed the study when your baby was either or both 9 or/and 12 months of age.

What We're Studying

With age, babies’ ability to control their actions develops. For example, if you tell them to wait in front of their favorite toy, they will be able to wait longer as they age. However, research suggests that their ability to control responses to food might not develop in the same way. We would like to know how this ability (appetite self-regulation) develops, and how it might differ from the development of more general ‘self-regulation’ skills. This could help us to develop early interventions for childhood obesity, overweight, and disordered eating habits.


30-45 minutes


As a thank-you, you will be offered a chance to win 1 of 5 Amazon gift vouchers worth twenty US dollars or equivalent for you to use in your country of residence. In order for you to be eligible, we will verify (1) your consent video, (2) that your child is in the correct age range, and (3) that you and your child were visible in all the videos submitted. Consent videos need to show the parent of the child who is participating to be valid. Only one entry per child is available, and you will need to take part at least twice to be entered in the prize draw (e.g., 9 and 12 months, 12 and 18 months). An email to ask if you would like to enter the draw will be sent to you normally within two weeks after your participation.

This study is conducted by Maria Laura Filippetti (contact:

Would you like to participate in this study?