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This content is taken from the EIT Food, University of Turin & European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT)'s online course, Food for Thought: The Relationship Between Food, Gut and Brain. Join the course to learn more.

Skip to 0 minutes and 14 seconds Welcome back Today would like to give you a brief introduction in what we call cognition The term cognition can be used broadly to describe a mental action of acquiring and understanding information and knowledge, by incorporating our thoughts and our past experiences. In a simplified way, We take in information by the environment, process it internally and act on it in form of behavior. Cognitive processes can be conscious and unconscious and they can be including new or past knowledge. Cognitive science can also be described as science of the mind. And the mind is a very complex and large area to research and investigate. It entails visual perception, object recognition and attention as a way to learn about the world.

Skip to 1 minute and 4 seconds It looks into the acquisition and retrieval of memories short and long term memories and into how we learn a language or develop reasoning problem solving and other intelligence skills. But What does cognition have to do with our food and our eating behavior? As it turns out, a lot. On the one hand, researchers are interested in how our cognitive skills are influenced by certain diets or nutrients. One popular example is the intake fish oil or omega 3 fatty acids. Which some scientists believe can have a positive effect on cognitive functions An example could be that our opinion about the impact of our diet on the planets’ health might influence our dietary choices.

Skip to 1 minute and 48 seconds If we believe that a vegetarian diet is better for the planet or emits less CO2, we might consider following such a diet to act environmentally friendly. Both directions of either our daily food intake and its influence on cognition as well as the relationship between our cognition and our daily food intake patterns will be discussed in details in later lectures. I hope I could spark your interest to tune into our course over the next couple of days.

Introduction to psychology - cognition

What are cognitions?

Just as in the past video we introduced emotions, in this one we introduce the concept of cognition and some key notions related to it, and we also briefly describe why cognitive science is important to study eating behaviors. These notions will return during the week three, especially during the second activity.

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This video is from the free online course:

Food for Thought: The Relationship Between Food, Gut and Brain

EIT Food