This Fork Will Trick Us Into Believing Our Food Tastes Better Than It Does

By Noah Kaufman |

Here are two statements that are true:

1. Too much salt is bad for you
2. Salt makes things taste delicious.

These two facts can raise a tricky question for us—do we want to be healthy or do we want food that tastes good? A developing technology in Japan could help put an end to the conflict created by our enjoyment of salt. A restaurant in Tokyo ran a 2-day trial featuring a menu with no salt and an “electro fork,” that mimics the taste of salt by zapping diners tongues with electrical current. This actually isn’t the first time engineers endeavored to get us to eat healthier with a jolt of electricity. In 2013 an engineer from Singapore developed digital taste interface in the shape of lollipop that could make people believe they were eating something salty, sour or bitter.

Related: Is Fat the 6th Taste?

The idea seems unusual, but actually makes some sense. Taste buds are made up of tiny hairs that send signals to our brains when stimulated in certain ways. So if someone could artificially stimulate those hairs in the same way say, salt does, that would provide the salty taste with none of the blood pressure-raising after effects.

According to Mashable there have been two pop-ups featuring the electric utensils so far and the team behind it is planning one more.  

We’re not sure we want to live in a world where we put live electrodes in our mouths, but for those who do look for the next opportunity to try out the forks at Lab Tokyo.

[h/t Mashable]

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