Some manned space missions can last for months and with trips to Mars looming, some can last for years. During this period, the basic needs of the crew, including food, continue, and scientists and chefs are now working to revolutionize the food that will be transported into space.
The idea of the research is that food helps maintain the physical and mental health of astronauts. To do this, the scientists looked at human taste perception and how sensory experiences can be used to remember food, in a study known as neural gastronomy, or neural gastronomy.
Neuroscience examines the relationship between humans, what they eat and where the food comes from, and whether this can be applied to deep space. This concern can help reduce the psychological impact of astronauts during missions as well as explore many other areas.
Understanding the relationship between the brain and the gut and the effects of long-term spaceflight is crucial. Growing food while traveling becomes a necessity.
Chris Kimmel, founder of Humanity and Deep Space, in response to space.com
Experiments with growing lettuce have already been done on the space station, but the challenge is to scale up production so that it will be enough to feed crews for several months in deep space.
Microgravity and force
In addition, another point that was studied during the research was the functioning of the digestive process in microgravity. Understanding the gut health of astronauts from a neuro-gastronomy point of view is important for developing diets in which the greatest number of nutrients can be absorbed in deep space.
The role of low gravity on the sense of smell and taste will also be examined by the researchers. It thus helps to improve the composition of the food, so that it remains enjoyable for the crew.
The isolation and confinement experienced in deep space can profoundly affect human psychology. If you go back through history, you will find a table where people gather to eat in every community. Zero-gravity cooking tools and applications have become essential tools for space travelers, allowing them to take on challenges and prepare meals in a microgravity environment. Astronauts must also communicate through food, even in these unusual circumstances.
Bob Berry, chef, in response to space.com
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