View Full Version : Disgust is good for you

January 15, 2004, 07:59 PM

"The purpose of disgust has been quantitatively demonstrated for the first time - it is an evolved response that protects people from disease or harm."

New Scientist (http://www.newscientist.com/news/news.jsp?id=ns99994563)

January 15, 2004, 08:08 PM
However, Workman adds that people can learn to suppress disgust. "In some parts of the world people eat tarantulas, which is something that would disgust most people,"

What does it mean. I have to confront my fears . Kiss/love someone I loathe. Logically, would'nt this be counterproductive and thereby lead to disease.


January 15, 2004, 08:51 PM
I think it means that humans can learn to suppress their natural instinct of disgust, if they know the disgust is not necessary. So it isn't really counter productive. E.g. that example they gave of cancer patients.

But I don't really agree with that. I think disgust is ALSO something you learn from your environment. For example, I wonder what the reaction a baby/toddler would have to those two towels. People who eat tarantulas do not think it is disgusting, perhaps because they learnt from their environment that it is not disgusting. So I don't think they suppressed their disgust, as it's something they never had in the first place!

But hey, what would I know on the matter. They are the scientists so they must be right :)

January 15, 2004, 09:30 PM
It's called a theory... theories always seem to get proven wrong (the fire, earth, air, water theory for example)