Call it classical conditioning.  I see a cheeseburger and my mouth starts to water, just like the dogs studied during the 1890s by Russian physiologist Ivan Pavlov.   Scientists have found that "eating with your eyes" is behavior hardwired into the brain and is deeply routed in evolution.

In order to better understand us, Japanese Genetics researchers monitored the brains of zebra fish which have a neuron network similar to humans.  (are we that simple?)

They discovered a direct neural link connecting the fish’s prey detector neurons to the part of the brain that causes hunger pangs when a zebra fish, man or animal sees prey.

And that means what, exactly?  Researchers say this response is what keeps humans and other animals alive in that it creates food motivation in the young which otherwise might not understand what to eat.

OK, so maybe we/me aren’t hardwired to water up for cheeseburgers (though I will be this weekend!) but the mouthwatering aspect of our reaction to seeing food is part of our evolutionary predatory humanity. ( Ever drooled over the idea of a salad?  Me neither.)

So far so what?

Well, scientists say they think this kind of research could help in the future in the search for cures to eating disorders.  (Daily Mail)

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