Looking at Delicious Food Makes Other Foods Tastier
Forget hanging skinny jeans on the refrigerator; according to a new study, hanging pictures of delicious food might actually be more effective.
According to a study in PLoS One, people who look at photos of high-calorie foods while eating other foods think that the food they’re eating is tastier than it might otherwise be.
Fourteen test subjects were given photographs, some of food items and some of just utensils. While the participants identified the photographs as being of food or non-food items, electrodes on their tongues delivered "electric tastes," small currents on the tongue that are "hedonically neutral," meaning they’re neither pleasant nor unpleasant.
Each participant received uniform electric tastes throughout the experiment, but when looking at photos of higher-calorie foods, they reported a more pleasant experience than when looking at low-calorie or non-food items.
"When viewing high-calorie food images, participants reported the subsequent taste to be more pleasant than when low-calorie food images preceded the identical taste," the study said.
If just looking at rich, high-calorie food can improve the taste experience, maybe our local health food restaurants should start decorating their walls with pictures of pizza and ice cream.