You'll Be Disgusted After Finding Out Why This Chicken Was Covered In Blue

Yum or yuck?

Food coloring has been around for ages (since 1500 B.C., to be more specific), but late studies show that it"s not as innocent as it might look.

Food dye is popular both in commercial and domestic food production. Adding colors or enhancing them is thought to make the product more appealing. The practice has been around for years but recently health institutions have taken a strict approach towards investigating what the effect of food dye is on human body and mind.

Apart from medical institutions, ordinary people take it upon themselves to reveal the painful truth about color additives. One of them is California-based photographer Lawrie Brown. In her 'Colored Food Series' she imposes artificially colored meals into their natural surroundings. This weirdly yellow milk, for instance.

While some of the dishes were covered in latex paint (chicken and corn), others are presented in the colors they are actually sold: like the eye-catching pink cereal, green ice cream or the vibrantly yellow block of cheddar (below).

As she told NPR"s blog The Salt, the idea for the project was born when she started learning about food additives: "I got to the point where I didn't think I could make a good purchase at the grocery store."

While the dishes in her project might seem outlandish, the truth is that all of these colors are regularly used in food coloring and we know it: from M&Ms to energy drinks, to cereal that we buy for our kids. But why is it bad?

Well, according to health advocacy groups, there"s a series of scientific evidence that link artificial food coloring to behavioral issues, especially in children. It is said to cause ADHD, although there hasn't been an all-encompassing research completed yet. Still, a number of well-conducted studies show that artificially colored food is one of the triggers for kids with hyperactivity disorder.

Another interesting fact tackled by Lawrie Brown is the notion that we taste with our eyes. According to Charles Spence, professor of experimental psychology at the University of Oxford, people tend to form preconceived notions about the flavor of food based on its color. Yellow indicated lemon, sultry red appears to be sweeter. But not only do they create a sort of expectation, colors actually influence the way to experience our food.

So what happens when the color is as unnatural as this pasta covered in a green goo?

As proved by Brown's project, it greatly depends on the individual person. She says that people expressed different reactions, especially towards the ice cream plate: "I had one person say that they just love grape toppings and then I had another person that found it disgusting."

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