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Food Porn
  • Food Porn has become quite a popular trend over the last few years
  • The two terms- food and porn, enable us to respond in similar ways making the concept a huge success
  • Restaurants and chefs are now understanding the psychology behind this human reaction to further improve their sales

June 05, 2017: What is food porn? Why do we call it food porn and not food pictures? Contemporary literature and cinema unvaryingly link food and porn.

No, food is not adjunct to sex, rather it is a substitute as a wild fascination or a very palatable dream. Alas, this adoration limits what sex is sincerely interpreted by the viewers. Sex and food (particularly sugar) are an attraction to human senses.


Taking pictures of food has become a thing for young consumers, even if sometimes, it’s a simple truffle cake but served on a fancy plate with a fancy spoon. Not to forget, those Rayban glasses tilted beside the plate and a cup of coffee, which might (might not) go to waste.

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Food porn refers to filtered photos of food that looks absolutely stunning and mouth watering. More commonly, an appealing photo of food that makes you drool can be considered food porn. The image triggers a craving for the real thing.

Food porn was first coined in ‘Female Desire’, a book written in 1984 by feminist writer Rosalind Cowards. To quote from her book,

“Cooking food and presenting it beautifully is an act of servitude. It is a way of expressing affection through a gift… That we should aspire to produce perfectly finished and presented food is a symbol of a willing and enjoyable participation in servicing others. Food pornography exactly sustains these meanings relating to the preparation of food. The kinds of picture used always repress the process of production of a meal. They are always beautifully lit, often touched up.”

Taking pictures of the meal at a restaurant has become a popular trend, thanks to #foodporn. Pixabay.

When we look at an image of something tempting, a lot of primordial sensory features come into place. Our sense of taste, vision, and smell heightens. It is the same way with sex. These are primordial features that have helped us evolves over the past million years.

To observe more modernly, it is a fact that sex sells. Using the term food porn or using its hashtags on social media is a guaranteed click. It attracts not just readers but anyone who would just want to flip the pages looking at the pictures. Without reading a word, it sells.

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If we talk about food in context to porn, we know that it is a stimulus. It is not the desire or the end in itself, but provocation for action. Food porn does not fulfill our desire but forces us to act in a way that our desires are met.

Food porn has now become an industry. It is being used as an effective tool for chefs and restaurants all over to attract customers. Tons of applications for mobile are available that have nothing but images of the well cooked meal.

Food reviewing is another career that has grown out of food madness. Vlogs on youtube are popular where it is nothing but centered around reviewing the food. Food blogs are also really popular.

So the next time you notice yourself drooling over an image of your favorite food, know that it is years of sensory evolution and neuron responses in the brain that are doing it for you.

– by Saksham Narula of NewsGram. Twitter: @Saksham2393


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