The Shangri-La Diet is partly based on the idea that we learn to associate flavors and calories. A food’s flavors become associated with the calories in the food. This association makes the flavor more pleasant.
I would like to learn more about this associative process so I have been studying it. Here is a simple example. At intervals of a day or so between bottles, I drank 4 bottles of a lemongrass-flavored soda. I chose that flavor because it was unfamiliar. Each bottle had 50 calories of cane sugar. I rated how pleasant each bottle tasted on a scale where 40 = slightly unpleasant, 50 = neutral, 60 = slightly pleasant, and 70 = somewhat pleasant. I drank the bottles between meals — far away from other food.
Here are the ratings.
The flavor gradually became more pleasant.