Between attraction and aversion: How designers can use the concept of disgust to influence food consumption

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Disgust is a strong emotion of aversion. In the context of food, it is often referred to as a guardian of the mouth, preventing close contact with pathogens and the accidental consumption of poisons. However, disgust can also create a certain level of attraction and be part of positive experiences, even in the context of food. In this article, we discuss different ways of using disgust to influence eating behaviour and contribute to healthier food consumption. We outline ten different bridging concepts accompanied by various design exemplars on how to use disgust in the context of critical food design. In addition, we present four different lenses that can help to refine the design concepts.