May 27, 2022

Mouth-Watering Social media

By: Ava DiGrande

Do you ever scroll through social media and see your favorite influencer eating a mouthwatering meal? Have you ever snapped a photo of your delicious dinner and shared it with your followers online? If you answered yes to either of these questions, you contribute to food-obsessed social media issues.

Today’s technology affects people’s relationship with food positively and negatively, simultaneously forcing individuals to think more about their eating.

One explanation for this idea comes from Dr. Valerie Taylor. Taylor argues that technology and food become a real problem when people “can’t” attend a gathering without photographing and posting the associated food and beverages. Extending from this, Taylor concluded that food is no longer thought about as “fuel.” If this statement is true, then the relationship between social media and food must be explored. A clear positive that stems from social media is education. Platforms such as Instagram are filled with healthy food influencers who share helpful tips, recipes, and daily do’s and don’ts. Furthermore, food platforms on social media have allowed individuals to become interested in new things. Trendy foods help businesses expand and let individuals celebrate cuisine together.

Yet, with all the celebration, there is bound to be some negatives. This brings us back to Taylor’s issue of constantly posting about their food and being too aware of their food. When you share a picture of food on your social media page, you also invite said followers to participate in the dining experience. Another side effect of food on social media is that it may be affecting your calorie increase. Food porn, delicious food/cooked imagery, is constantly trending on social media. If the goal of advertising is to sell you things, it can be expected that viewing images of food online will make a person more likely to indulge. This theory is backed up by Yevgeneily Gelfand, an expert in psychiatry and internal medicine with Trident Medical Center.

“You eat with your eyes first.”

INSTAGRAM/SPOONFORKBACON

A study published in the journal Physiology & Behavior concluded that a meal’s appearance (color, evenness, shape) influences how you feel about the food’s taste, smell, and flavor.

To expand on the concept of eating with your eyes, it is essential to discuss the roles influencers have on their followers’ eating habitats. If you scroll through Tik Tok for a few minutes, you’re likely to get shown a video that somehow relates to food. This could be in the form of a “what I eat in a day,” a mukbang (food ASMR), a trendy recipe, etc. Though they may seem harmless, these minute-long videos can hold a lot of power over an individual and elicit emotional responses.

Obviously, posting about and following food accounts is not inherently wrong. However, it is important to remember everything in moderation. With anything, being aware is the first time. Therefore, there are multiple things you can do to create healthy habits on social media (in regards to food). Some examples of healthy habits to practice are following healthy foods pages, limiting the amount of “food porn” pages you follow, making healthy choices to replace unhealthy cravings, replacing screen time with engaging activities, et

11 thoughts on “Mouth-Watering Social media

  1. Hi! I thought this was a great post. I loved how you laid everything out, I thought it looked great and very professional. I also think you brought a great perspective, I know when I go on social media I am always seeing something about food, especially on TikTok. I never thought about how it can affect someone mentally but I can definitely see how it could, especially for younger generations

  2. My whole Instagram feed has slowly become trendy recipes and food porn. I really like how you touched on Dr. Valerie Taylor’s analysis on the changing relationship between people and food, and this idea that we no longer think of food as fuel. It’s weird to think that instead of just a necessity, it’s become an experience where we engage in popular trendy culture. I definitely think it’s true that we eat with our eyes first and social media has only made that more real and intense. Great post!

  3. This is such an interesting topic, because I had never thought about the negative health implications that can come from this type of thing! I definitely have thought about the negativity of not living in the moment and having to “feed the phone/camera” before yourself, but I had never realized how much of a problem this could be for some people.

    For me personally, I would almost argue that social media has gotten me more into food and cooking on my own than ever before! I think seeing the atheistically pleasing side of plating the awesome, vibrant colors has given me a whole new appreciate of food and the art of cooking and food photography. I do think it can be easy to get carried away with doing it for the purpose of the photo and to share it with others rather than the sake of just doing it for your own enjoyment, but at least it’s getting me to do something I never used to before– cook!

  4. I loved this post! I enjoy getting recipes from Pinterest, Instagram and Tik Tok, however I find that with the flood of food images and recipes I can become overwhelmed and stress too much about what I’m going to eat. I’ve followed some people on instagram who gave me very useful tips about how to stay healthy without a lot of time on your hands with quick and clean meals. I think food on social media is a complicated issue because I feel even these healthy food bloggers seems like their diet can be a little too controlling of their life at times. I think it’s important to be aware of how social media may affect your relationship with food.

    1. I really enjoyed your comment about stressing over what to eat. I find that I experience that too. Social media makes me think I need to be having full, extravagant, and delicious meals every time I eat, and that simply isn’t the case.

  5. Loved this post! It’s uncommon that I spend 5 minutes on social media without seeing food-related content. My client for my campaigns class is a pasta brand, so it’s been especially interesting to be on the other side of it and create food content of my own. I also loved your take on healthy habits to lessen the negative effects that can come from food content on social media! It’s good to keep moderation in mind.

  6. I thought this was a very interesting post. I like how it is laid out, it makes it way easier to read. I am always looking through Instagram and TikTok to find new food recipes and ideas. My best friend and I sent each other Instagram DM’s with new foods that we both want to try.

  7. Hello Ava,

    This is all too true in regards to people photographing their foods at gatherings. I am by no means an old person – I have to preface that before I say this – but I remember when dinners used to be about good food and good company; and not bragging rights on social media showcasing the food being eaten. It kind of bums me out, but I could never put it into words. So this was a really interesting blog post for me.

    1. I know, gathering for dinner use to mean communicating where now it is all about posting and letting other people know you are together. It is interesting to see how much social media affects one’s relationship with food.

  8. Hi Ava, great post! I love the layout you chose. I really find the quote “you eat with your eyes first” interesting because Instagram, picture-worthy food is more popular now than ever and is definitely a big influence.

  9. Hi Ava! I absolutely loved reading this post. Not only is it aesthetically eye catching, it has an awesome flow and interesting content. I completely agree that although “foodie culture” can be helpful in sharing recipes/cultural food/healthy options it can also be highly destructive to many. From those who post about restricting food to the binge eating mukbangs, there is no doubt that content surrounding food on social media is harmful.

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