Two regions in the ventral visual cortex of the brain are selectively activated by images of food, reflecting the importance of food for human survival and culture

Mind 19 September 2022

Specialised parts of the brain may activate when we look at food

Diego Cervo/Shutterstock/Pxfue​

Two regions of the brain have been discovered that react most strongly to images of food.

Researchers have previously identified regions of the brain’s visual system that are selectively activated by faces, words and places. It is believed that these items require specialist processing in the brain because they are especially important for socialising and survival.

But no such region had been conclusively found that was activated by looking at food. Two studies published this year suggested that …