The NY Times article about parents who pressure their nannies to provide organic/healthy food to the kids contained a quote from a mother who was absolutely convinced that however her child ate determined the way he or she was going to eat forever. Sure, it could have some influence. But is it really that much? I'm curious how many Chowhounds out there grew up with would be considered the average American diet and came to be more conscious of what they eat on their own.
As for me, I certainly ate my fair share of fast food and then some. It definitely showed. But my parents came from a country and a culture where people often didn't have enough to eat, so they thought feeding me all the American food I wanted was a great thing. I always ate ethnic food at home, though, which set me up to be more receptive to "different" foods. When I left for college, my parents and I simultaneously went for healthier food. They worked more legumes and exotic grains into their food while I cut out sugars and started eating organic.