© iStockphoto
Mike Pomranz
June 22, 2017

Think looking at food and watching cooking shows is just innocent fun—that it’s a hobby far healthier than actually shoving real food into your face? Think again. A new study entitled “Eating with our eyes: From visual hunger to digital satiation” suggests that our addiction to seeing food in all its glory could be adding to our obesity problem.

The paper, featuring an array of authors from places like Oxford University, Yokohama National University in Japan and the Imagineering Institute in Malaysia, looked at a large body of research and concluded, “one candidate factor [for our current obesity crisis] that most certainly deserves a closer look is the increasing prevalence of high fat food images that surround us in both the real and virtual food landscape.”

One example they provide is the continuing influx of food-related TV programing. “It has been suggested that those of us currently living in the Western world are watching more cookery shows on TV than ever before,” the authors surmise. “Such food shows often glamorize food without necessarily telling a balanced story when it comes to the societal, health, and environmental consequences of excess consumption. Moreover, the number of hours of TV a person watches is positive [sic] correlated with their body-mass index.”

In the end, the authors seem to hope their paper will at least start a conversation around how seeing food is related to eating food, especially in our modern technological world. “Given the essential role that food plays in helping us to live long and healthy lives, one of the key challenges outlined here concerns the extent to which our food-seeking sensory systems/biology…are capable of adapting to a rapidly-changing (sometimes abundant) food landscape,” they write.

It’s all part of my new diet plan: Clear out the DVR and shut down your Instagram account. 

Related: Instagrammers Beware: Food Porn Is Illegal in Germany 
Stacked Video: Making the Ultimate Cheeseburger 
Can a Campaign for Healthy Food Porn Make Us Eat Better?

You May Like