Fast Food Nation

This lack of public disclosure enables the companies

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Unformatted text preview: tter ones; we know this because scientists have rubbed various flavors inside the mouths of infants and then recorded their facial reactions. A person’s food preferences, like his or her personality, are formed during the first few years of life, through a process of socialization. Toddlers can learn to enjoy hot and spicy food, bland health food, or fast food, depending upon what the people around them eat. The human sense of smell is still not fully understood and can be greatly affected by psychological factors and expectations. The mind filters out the overwhelming majority of chemical aromas that surround us, focusing intently on some, ignoring others. People can grow accustomed to bad smells or good smells; they stop noticing what once seemed overpowering. Aroma and memory are somehow inextricably linked. A smell can suddenly evoke a long-forgotten moment. The flavors of childhood foods seem to leave an indelible mark, and adults often return to them, without always knowing why. These “comfort foods” become a source of pleasure and reassurance, a fact that fast food chains work hard to promote. Childhood memories of Happy Meals can translate into frequent adult visits to McDonald’s, like those of the chain’s “heavy users,” the customers who eat there four or five times a week. The human craving for flavor has been a largely unacknowledged and unexamine...
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This note was uploaded on 02/25/2014 for the course MGMT 120 taught by Professor Litt during the Spring '08 term at UCLA.

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