Virtual reality dining sounds like something out of a science fiction movie, but the future, complete with super cool-looking virtual reality glasses, is (almost) here. The technology is the brainchild of Project Nourished, which tricks you into thinking you’re eating gourmet food (steak, sushi, or pretty much anything you want) when you’re actually consuming gelatinous blobs that contain the nutrients and vitamins we need in a day.
This virtual reality experience goes one step beyond Soylent, the tasteless, beige shake that also has all the necessary nutrients and vitamins for a human adult. But this innovation actually makes “fake” food feel real, and without all of the unwanted sugars and unhealthy fats.
Project Nourished combines the technology of the Oculus Rift virtual reality gaming headset with hydrocolloid gums (water-soluble additives that improve mouthfeel, extend shelf-life, encapsulate flavors, emulsify beverages, build viscosity, and retain moisture) to transform your gloop into a five-course meal. Keep in mind that Project Nourished is nowhere near a reality, and as of now it only exists as an idea on a website, imagined by designer Jinsoo An. But An believes that, in the future, the technology could help curb obesity, diabetes, and eating disorders.
Even if Project Nourished is in its infantile stages, it does have its detractors already, like Modern Farmer, which has declared the project as a “horrible technology [that] attempts to ruin the pleasure of food.”