Have you ever wondered what makes you eat more of a certain food and less of another one? Probably, you will answer that it’s all a matter of personal tastes. But do you know where personal tastes come from?
To explain this, we need to introduce some psychological concepts. First off, the pleasure of eating: this is what makes us eat and feel satisfied, as human beings are genetically made to seek pleasure and avoid pain.
So, in simple words, we can say that when you are turned on by food, you are turning on your metabolism. Because feeling the pleasure of eating means to activate the metabolic process.
Studies and researches
A recent study from the University of Texas shows that people who have high levels of cholesterol still tend to choose to eat those foods that include high doses of cholesterol. This means that those people feel a sort of attraction towards those foods, which can be explained with the theory of pleasure on eating.
Another study made by researchers from Sweden and Thailand shows that cultural preferences for foods can affect the absorption of iron from a meal.
That is that people who enjoy eating a particular meal will also absorb more nutrients from that meal, while those people who have never eaten a particular food or meal will build up a sort of psychological refuse to the nutrients coming from that food or meal.
Considerations on eating habits
So, we should always take into consideration the CCK factor, that is the chemical cholecystokinin. This is a substance produced by our body as a response to the absorption of proteins or fats.
This substance reaches the hypothalamus and shuts down appetite signals. Moreover, the CCK has a function of stimulation of the pleasure in the cerebral cortex.
This explains why meat and other foods containing fats provoke a bigger sensation of pleasure and bring us to eat more of that food. You can experience this using any kind of meat based recipe or even using a recipe of cake and cream filled bakery products.
Actually, eating is not only the way we have to follow to get full and avoid the pain for hunger. Eating is also a pleasure to share with friends and family, this is why human beings love to sit at the table of a dinner with the whole family and this is also why we like to invite people and share the meal together with them.