Shwetha Bhatia

Are our food choices being manipulated?

May, 2017
The Master Responds

Are food companies playing a part in the kinds of cravings we have?

In fact, it may just be a self-reinforcing loop: humans develop habits from consuming a certain type of food and continue seeking out these foods, and companies keep trying to meet their tastes and reinforce these cravings.

Companies perform this search systematically, coming up with systematic variations of the types and amounts of ingredients and/or seasonings in the same food product. There may be different bliss points for one food, for example in coffee – some like strong 'dark roast (coffee) brews' while others prefer regular or weaker 'lighter brews.'

It is human nature to gravitate towards the sweet and savoury, and gradually, bliss points have been engineered even for products that are traditionally not sweet. Consumers no longer know natural sweetness.



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Are food companies playing a part in the kinds of cravings we have? In fact, it may just be a self-reinforcing loop: humans develop habits from consuming a certain type of food and continue seeking out these foods, and companies keep trying to meet their tastes and reinforce these cravings.

View More