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NewsBites January 2016 Issue

From Instagram to Your Waistline

Consuming "food porn" might encourage consumption of actual, high-calorie food. In a review of recent scientific findings, Oxford University researchers concluded that regular exposure to "virtual food" in advertisements, TV cooking programs and social media contributes to cravings for the non-virtual kind. Though previous studies have linked advertisements and cooking shows to food consumption, the researchers added that social-media postings on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter also contribute to cravings. "While some might be tempted to see this as the fault of industry/marketers," they wrote in the journal Brain and Cognition, "it is important to remember, given the growing popularity of consumers taking pictures of food, that the problem would appear to be at least partly self-inflicted."

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