ISSN 0439-755X
CN 11-1911/B

心理学报 ›› 2022, Vol. 54 ›› Issue (7): 736-747.doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2022.00736

• 研究报告 • 上一篇    下一篇


彭宇彬, 宛小昂()   

  1. 清华大学心理学系, 北京 100084
  • 收稿日期:2021-07-01 发布日期:2022-05-16 出版日期:2022-07-25
  • 通讯作者: 宛小昂
  • 基金资助:

Flavors bias attention toward associated colors in visual search

PENG Yubin, WAN Xiaoang()   

  1. Department of Psychology, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084, China
  • Received:2021-07-01 Online:2022-05-16 Published:2022-07-25
  • Contact: WAN Xiaoang


人们常将特定的颜色与风味联系起来形成色味联结, 而且颜色线索会影响风味感知, 这体现了视觉信息对味觉信息加工的跨通道影响。本研究通过两个行为实验, 考察了味觉信息是否也会影响视觉搜索。实验任务要求被试品尝饮品后对形状靶子进行视觉搜索, 并且操纵了味觉刺激的提示性以及靶子颜色与风味之间的关联性。实验1的结果表明, 当风味线索提示的靶子颜色是与风味关联的颜色时可以加快视觉搜索。但如果与该风味关联的颜色出现在干扰项上, 风味线索则无法促进视觉搜索。其后, 我们在实验2中排除了语义启动的混淆, 也发现了与实验1一致的结果。本研究的结果表明, 风味线索会引发对关联颜色的注意偏向, 证实了味觉刺激对视觉注意的跨通道影响, 为色味交互提供了新的实验证据, 揭示了跨通道影响可能的发生机制。

关键词: 色味联结, 跨通道影响, 风味, 注意偏向


People tend to associate colors with specific flavors, establishing color-flavor associations, and people can generate flavor expectations about foods and beverages based on color. Recent research has shown that participants can generate color expectations about packaged food based on a flavor label to guide the visual search for this flavor. However, it remains unclear how flavors modulate color processing. Here, we conducted two visual search experiments to address this issue.

In Experiment 1, we used a peristaltic pump to deliver a dose of fruit-flavored beverage or flavorless purified water to the participants’ mouths, followed by a shaped-based visual search task. Half of the participants were informed that the strawberry and pineapple flavors were always followed by targets in the associated colors, while the rest of them were informed that the strawberry and pineapple flavors were always followed by targets in the non-associated colors. The flavorless water was not predictive of the color of the target. Their visual searches were faster when the target appeared in a flavor-associated color or when the target appeared in a non-associated color but the flavor-associated color was absent from the display. By contrast, the flavor cue did not facilitate visual search if the distractor was presented in the flavor-associated color, thus indicative of prioritized attention to this associated color.

Considering that the participants were exposed to the flavor labels when they received their instructions at the beginning of Experiment 1, we conducted Experiment 2 to rule out the possible influence of flavor labels. Experiment 2 was performed with the same methods as in Experiment 1 except for one important difference. The participants were not given information regarding the specific flavors. They were only informed that flavors A and B were always followed by red- and yellow-colored targets, respectively. The flavors were always followed by targets in the associated colors for half of the participants and by non-associated colors for the rest of the participants. We obtained similar result patterns as in Experiment 1.

The results of these two experiments consistently revealed an attentional bias toward flavor-associated colors in the shape-based visual search. These findings show how flavor cues could modulate visual information processing. Our findings provide empirical evidence regarding color-flavor interactions by showing the influence of gustatory cues on visual attention, which allows us to further investigate the underlying mechanisms and neural basis of crossmodal influence in future research.

Key words: color-flavor associations, crossmodal influence, flavor, attentional bias