Brits reveal their most disgusting food fears, including bruised bananas, bony fish and mouldy bread

·4-min read
Mouldy bread is up there with one of the top food horrors. (Getty Images)
Mouldy bread is up there with one of the top food horrors. (Getty Images)

Is there anything more disappointing than looking forward to some buttery toast only to pull out a slice to find the bread covered in mould?

But turns out bread that's past its best is the least of our worries when it comes to the food horrors that are giving Brits the ick. 

From lumpy milk to smelly meat, bruised fruit to furry cheese (vomit face emoji), a study of 2,000 British adults revealed some of the kitchen nightmares putting us off our grub. 

Watch: Five unique recipes that repurpose stale bread

As well as a list of the top 40 foods Brits are revolted by, the research revealed that people are typically put off food twice a week with the likes of milk, bread and salad being tossed away due to not looking edible. 

Almost half of those surveyed describe themselves as a fussy eater, with a fifth claiming to be easily put off food - so much so that over three quarters of us (78%) inspect edibles for bumps and imperfections before eating them.

Read more: The nation’s most hated dining habits revealed

On the extreme end of the scale, more than a quarter admitted to being physically sick due to off-putting food and drink.

Aside from being polite when they're served up food by a friend, the study also found half of people have refused to eat something that someone else made because it looked "off-putting", with top reasons for turning down a food or drink including worrying it’ll make them ill or feeling sick at the thought of eating it.

Soggy foods, like pizza, are one of Brit's top food horrors. (Getty Images)
Soggy foods, like pizza, are one of Brit's top food horrors. (Getty Images)

It seems that soggy foods are some of the most off putting with nearly half (49%) admitted to disliking foods that's on the squidgy side, with crisps, bread and sandwiches the most likely to be left uneaten if they were, er, 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, as many as 14% claim they have an actual fear of certain foods and 11% a proper 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.

The 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, almost a third of those living with food phobias claim they developed because they don’t understand why we consume it (29%), while a further quarter simply disagree that it should be consumed at all (26%). 

Watch: The tricky meals people refuse to eat on a first date

In order to avoid such horror-inducing foods, 55% of those with a genuine fear avoid having the item in their house, while 51% refuse to even cook it for friends and family and 41% actively avoid its aisle in a supermarket.

Commenting on the results Chris McLaughlin, commercial director at Baker Street, who commissioned the research, 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.

"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.

“It’s crazy to think that so many of us avoid so many different types of foods.”

Read more: Checking your phone, smoke breaks and knife-licking: The nation's biggest dinner date turn-offs revealed

Lumpy milk is another food and drink faux pas. (Getty Images)
Lumpy milk is another food and drink faux pas. (Getty Images)

Top 20 foods Brits are put off by:

1. Mouldy bread

2. Rotten vegetables

3. Smelly meat

4. Lumpy milk

5. Gristly meat

6. Furry cheese

7. Bones in fish

8. Fatty meat

9. Green cheese

10. Fish with the head still attached

11. Bruised/brown bananas

12. Bruised/brown apples

13. Slimy carrot sticks

14. Soggy bread

15. Soft crisps

16. Skin on top of a cup of tea or coffee

17. Lumpy gravy

18. Fish skin

19. Soft biscuits

20. Soft crackers

Read more: The end of the office tea round? 'Gross' workplace habits UK employees want banned

Top 10 foods people have a fear or phobia of:

1. Mayonnaise

2. Cold meat  

3. Mushrooms

4. Milk

5. Yoghurt

6. Bananas

7. Ketchup

8. Chocolate

9. Cake  

10. Crumpets

Additional reporting SWNS.

Watch: Mum shares simple trick for feeding fussy eaters

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