It’s long been said that a man’s stomach is the way to his heart, but as it turns out, the same could probably be said for women.
Since lockdown restrictions eased a few months ago, thousands of Brits have been firing back-up the dating apps, eager to end the dating drought.
A new study of 2,000 adults has unveiled that it is a case of ‘love at first bite’ for more than one in five Brits, who admit they decide whether to continue dating someone - based on their FOOD PREFERENCES.
Commissioned by Peperami Chicken Bites, the poll unveiled that 22 per cent would only consider a future with someone if they shared the same taste in cuisine as them and are considered ‘food compatible’.
In fact, 14 per cent admitted they would end a budding romance if the person in question had completely different tastes to them.
And 11 per cent have, or would, decide against a second date based on their prospective lover’s food order.
With grub the key to getting the guy or girl, more than half believe that someone liking the same dishes and flavours as them makes them more attractive.
17 per cent feel so passionate about it, that they would not go out with someone with different tastes - even if they were a millionaire.
When questioned, respondents declared that they were more likely to judge what is on their dates plate than their shoes, what car they drive and how much money they make!
Incredibly, 30 per cent stated that food was more important to them than sex (17 per cent).
Food psychologist, Dr Christy Fergusson, commented on the findings: “Having studied the behavioural patterns behind peoples relationships with food for many years, it isn’t surprising to hear that food plays such an important role when searching for a partner.
“What someone eats and the food choices they make can give important insights into who they are. In dating it helps us to assess if they are going to be a good fit for us and our lifestyle and values.
“Most people recognise that in dating and relationships so much of our interaction is centred around food. Where to go for a meal, what to buy from the supermarket, what to have for lunch, what takeaway to order from. Food choice compatibility can be key in dating.
“It’s clear that we don’t only make decisions about compatibility with our head and our heart – but our taste buds too!”
The research also found that a quarter said the person being compatible with them when it comes to food has a strong bearing on whether a date is going well.
Depending on the dish in question, 12 per cent would consider walking out on a date purely because of what the other person ordered.
Those who mention food on their online dating profiles are more likely to receive messages from potential suitors.
The research forms part of Peperami’s latest campaign - Love at First Bite – an experiment where single celebrities are matched with complete strangers, based on their love of the same foods and flavours.
Looking at the cuisine we connect over, chicken was crowned the most popular dish to tuck into when on a date – with a whopping 46 per cent of men and women having a passion for poultry.
Foods which Brits think should be avoided on an initial date were found to cover off anything with lots of onion (23 per cent), garlic (36 per cent) or fish (10 per cent).
Ribs (14 per cent), corn on the cob (12 per cent) and sushi (10 per cent) should also be dodged.
On the other hand, foods considered ‘safe’ on a first date included chicken and chips (39 per cent), pizza (39 per cent) and steak (39 per cent).
Italian was found to be the go-to cuisine according to 46 per cent, followed by British (43 per cent) and Chinese (24 per cent).
A third even admitted they would prefer a home-cooked dinner made for them rather than going to a fancy restaurant for a first date.
The study also found that for 2 in 5 it takes a mere 5 minutes to make a judgement of someone on a first meeting.
But of those currently in a relationship, just 55 per cent feel they are compatible with their partner when it comes to their food tastes.
A Peperami spokesman added: “It’s interesting to understand how food can influence who we fall for and how ordering a controversial dish could mean the end of a short-lived romance.
“We want to help Brits find their soulmate, which is why we’re having a go at playing matchmaker. To give us the best chance of creating genuine connections, dishes will contain the most popular food voted by singletons – chicken!
“We’re looking forward to helping those who are often unclucky in love and seeing if it really is love at first bite.”
TOP 10 ‘SAFEST’ DISHES TO ORDER ON A FIRST DATE
- Chicken and chips (39 per cent)
- Pizza (39 per cent)
- Chicken salad (38 per cent)
- Steak (38 per cent)
- Lasagne (32 per cent)
- Penne Pasta (31 per cent)
- Risotto (29 per cent)
- Sandwich (24 per cent)
- Chicken burger (23 per cent)
- Beef burger (23 per cent)