Inthe article “An Anthropologist Explains Why We Want to Eat Tide Pods” by AnneEwank, she discusses a recent trend that has been appearing through out themedia in various age groups. Ewank states that the human behavior that it isbeing observed in our society is the desire and action of eating tide pods. Iwould like to note that while this trend has been prominent in today’s society,I am in no way condoning this behavior. Tide pods are packed with variouschemicals that have been known to cause damage to a human’s internal body.
Evolution is able to connect to this human behavior in various ways. Since thestart of the 19th century, many united states companies began to usedyes in their products, to the appeal to the desire of its customer base. Theuse of bright colors reminds many of bright foods like fruit, appealing to manypeople’s food catalog, something seen in human population over time. The brightcolors can also activate certain areas of the brain, which can result inrelease of neurotransmitter/neuro-hormones that can have positive impact of themood of the person, an evolutional biological characteristic of bright colors. Another reason could be due to the texture andshape of the tide pod. The soft squishy nature of the tide pod in a wayresembles soft food.
Throughout time we have typically ate food that is softdue to its simple nature of consumption. The similarities in texture can be areason why many are drawn to eat them. The small size of the tide pod peaks ourinterest due to small food typically being associated with candies. A roundshape has been noted of increasing the perception that something is sweet.
Thistrend has been seen significantly in western culture through out time. Lastly,it is in our nature that we overlook instincts that indicate something is notsafe to eat. As a species we constantly scavenge for more things to eat,instead of sticking with the basic food staples we have. This trend has beenseen throughout human history, being passed from generation to generation. Ifit isn’t edible, we try to make it; we use fire, tools etc.
An example of suchcan be seen with coffee beans. It is typically bitter and sour, but as asociety we have learned that it is the “norm” to drink when grinded and mixedwith liquids. There are alternatives for a reasoning behind this behavior. Anexample would be a desire to feel “cool, accepted, trendsetter”. It has beennoted that our current society is fascinated with social media and showingothers what is happening in ours lives to get the attention many of us crave.The desire for attention could be a possible alternative to eating tide podsthat often follow with a video. The more views, likes, comments a video gets,the more satisfaction many people feel.
This article is biased for an evolutionary account but alsonotes there could be other possible factors for this human behavior. I believethat the article does reflect the science of it. I believe that article’s reasoningincorporates aspects of biology, sociology, psychology and anthropology, andpossibly much more. Some of the statements in this article could possibly onlyapply to western culture, but such bases still relies on aspects of socialscience. While this article uses a few embellishment it only does so toemphasis its argument.