New study explains why you should look at your food before c
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The order in which your senses interact with food has a tremendous impact on how much you like it. That's the premise of a new study led by the University of South Florida (USF). The findings published in the Journal of Consumer Psychology show that food tastes better if you see it before smelling it.

Researchers came to this conclusion following four experiments involving cookies, fruit snacks, and lemonade. In the first study, nearly 200 participants interacted with the food, each item wrapped in an opaque versus a transparent package. The team administered each item in different orders: visual before scent, scent before visual, only visual, and only scent. Despite being the same product, participants rated the strawberry-flavored fruit snacks packaged in an envelope as tasting better when they could see the item before smelling it compared to their counterparts who smelled the item before seeing it. Researchers experienced the same results when they tested the taste perception of the cookies. The research team experienced the same results when it focused on beverages.

"This is because being able to see a food item before smelling it helps in processing the scent cue with greater ease, which in turn enhances the food taste perception," said the author. "Basically, scents play a very critical role in influencing taste perceptions; however, interestingly, people can process a scent better in their brains when the scent is preceded by a corresponding visual cue, such as color."

These findings are highly beneficial to supermarkets and the author suggests they consider installing more glass cases to help facilitate a customer's ability to see a food item at a distance before smelling it.

Source: https://doi.org/10.1002/jcpy.1231
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