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Food Acceptability, Menu Fatigue, and Aversion in ISS Missions (Food_Acceptability)
Principal Investigator
Research Area:
Human factors
Metabolism and nutrition
Species Studied
Scientific Name: Homo sapiens Species: Human

This study addresses the risks of performance decrements and crew illness due to an inadequate food system that does not provide adequate diversity to address multi-year and deep space habitat missions. Past research has indicated that menu acceptability can impact the number of calories consumed, which also affects the overall nutritional intake of food by the crew on a mission. These reductions can result in impacts to crew health and performance. Crew data has suggested that the use of a standard food menu for 6 months or longer results in the decline in food satisfaction, and for some items by as much as 50%.

The need for and the amount of variety in choices of foodstuffs can also be tied to the length of the missions. That is, as missions increase in length, so should the menu diversity. Risks associated with food variety reductions include increases in gastric cancer and other adverse health effects such as inadequate brain health, psychological function, and gut health. The current state of acceptability of the ISS food system throughout 6-month and 1-year missions needs to be determined before adequate diversity for multi-year missions can be defined. Additional research needs to account for the sensory and psychosocial acceptability of food by looking at menu diversification and the impacts imposed on food consumption by microgravity, food processing and storage, environmental noise, and eating environment. Such evaluations will help determine the necessary menu diversity to prevent menu fatigue and promote the selection of nutritional choices needed for longer space missions and deep space habitats.

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Food intake
Food supply
Food preferences

Data Information
Data Availability
Archiving in progress. Data is not yet available for this experiment.

Food system
Food variety
Habitability: food system

Mission/Study Information
Mission Launch/Start Date Landing/End Date Duration
Expedition 50 10/28/2016 04/09/2017 164 days
Expedition 51 04/09/2017 06/02/2017 55 days
Expedition 52 06/02/2017 09/02/2017 92 days
Expedition 55 02/27/2018 06/03/2018 96 days
Expedition 56 06/03/2018 10/04/2018 123 days
Expedition 57 10/04/2018 12/20/2018 77 days
Expedition 58 12/18/2018 03/14/2019 85 days
Expedition 59 03/14/2019 06/24/2019 102 days
Expedition 60 06/24/2019 10/03/2019 101 days
Expedition 61 10/03/2019 02/06/2020 126 days
Expedition 62 02/06/2020 04/17/2020 70 days
Expedition 63 04/17/2020 10/21/2020 187 days
Expedition 64 10/21/2020 04/16/2021 177 days
Expedition 65 04/16/2021 10/17/2021 184 days
Expedition 66 10/17/2021 03/30/2022 164 days

Human Research Program (HRP) Human Research Roadmap (HRR) Information
Crew health and performance is critical to successful human exploration beyond low Earth orbit. The Human Research Program (HRP) investigates and mitigates the highest risks to human health and performance, providing essential countermeasures and technologies for human space exploration. Risks include physiological and performance effects from hazards such as radiation, altered gravity, and hostile environments, as well as unique challenges in medical support, human factors, and behavioral health support. The HRP utilizes an Integrated Research Plan (IRP) to identify the approach and research activities planned to address these risks, which are assigned to specific Elements within the program. The Human Research Roadmap is the web-based tool for communicating the IRP content.

The Human Research Roadmap is located at:

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Additional Information
Managing NASA Center
Johnson Space Center (JSC)
Responsible NASA Representative
Institutional Support
National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)
Alternate Experiment Name
Proposal Date
Proposal Source
Directed Research