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New food porn index shows the top food hashtags on Twitter, Instagram

Twitter, Inc.InstagramAlternative Medicine

It's nothing to be ashamed of. We all do it, and sometimes we do it discreetly at work: We click through pictures of food porn on the computer, and we can't stop. 

Bolthouse Farms, a farm that makes bottled juices and dressings, decided to study our food viewing habits, and it created what it calls the Food Porn Index. It's a site that monitors social media conversations and mentions of certain food hashtags in 24 categories on Twitter and Instagram. The site updates every 15 minutes with the total mentions of a food such as #pizza or #carrot. 

The company found that people were tagging pictures of unhealthful foods nearly three times as much as pictures of fruits and vegetables. 

"The main purpose is to start a conversation and really shine a light on the health of the Internet," said Suzanne Ginestro, ‎vice president of strategic marketing at Bolthouse Farms. "I saw more images of doughnuts, pizza and cake and very little fruits and vegetables."

The website is a visual playground of spinning doughnuts, swinging pomegranates, screaming ice cream cones, splattered condiments, dancing Brussels sprouts and more. Each item lists the hashtag it's associated with and how many times it's been used. 

Some of the items are accompanied by games. Click on #avocado and you get the Guac-A-Mole game where you can smash virtual avocados. Click on #melon and you get Melon Meditation with a soothing woman's voice talking about melons and how they aren't much different from you and me. 

At the time of publication, #condiment had 25,531,002 mentions, while #beets had 360,351 mentions. #Candy was at 20,715,499 and #carrot had 5,696,750. 

The company is hoping the website will influence what we tweet, and ultimately, what we eat. 

"What people tweet about and post is a reflection of how we behave in the offline world," Ginestro said. "If games like Melon Meditation and Mushroom Zoom helps change the imbalance, then we’re all for it!"

Want more quirky food news? Follow me on Twitter: @Jenn_Harris_

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Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times
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Twitter, Inc.InstagramAlternative Medicine
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