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Psychologists implant false food memories

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posted on Sep, 5 2004 @ 09:12 PM
I found this article rather interesting especially the greater implications for implanting inappropriate responses to fake feedback?

"In a study accepted for publication in the journal Social Cognition, the researchers describe how they fooled college students into thinking that as children they had become sick when eating certain foods.

The students answered questions about their early eating memories. A week later, they were presented with a bogus food-history profile that embedded a single falsehood - that they had gotten sick when eating pickles or hard-boiled eggs - among real memories.

"This is called the false feedback technique, where you gather data from the subjects and use it to lend credibility to this false profile," said Elizabeth Loftus, a psychologist at the University of California at Irvine who led the research.

About 40 percent of the 336 participants confirmed in later interviews that they remembered getting sick or believed it to be true.

Compared with students whose memories were not manipulated, the believers said on questionnaires that they would be much more likely to avoid eating pickles or hard-boiled eggs if offered them at a party.

In another study, just completed, the researchers found that people who were told that they loved asparagus as children were much more drawn to that slender delicacy than those whose memories were left alone.

Proust's reflections on tea and madeleines notwithstanding, the earliest experience of taste is as open to tampering as other memories, Loftus said. If these revisions became permanent, they might affect how and what people eat."

posted on Sep, 5 2004 @ 09:21 PM
This study is often quoted when people talk about childhood sexual abuse and how memories can be implanted by therapists and hypnotists. Cound be implanted by vengeful parents, too.

Memories can be manufactured or real. It's interesting to hear peoples' accounts of an event in history also. Our own biases and oppinions can shape what we remember also.

Goes along with "A lie told often enough becomes the truth"

posted on Sep, 7 2004 @ 07:08 AM

Originally posted by RedBalloon

Goes along with "A lie told often enough becomes the truth"


Repitition is the one of the best ways to remember something (flash cards, anyone?), so it only makes sense that by implanting a (false) thought in to a period of time that most people don't remember all that well anyways is going to be remember as the truth.

excellent post, IMO.

posted on Sep, 7 2004 @ 12:58 PM
I'd love to sign up for some false food memory planting. MMM spinach! MMM squash!

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