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In my world, aliens who have been able to create wormhole tech and visit earth to immerse themselves in the culture here. they split into groups and visit the largest cities (NY, London, Paris, Beijing, Dubai). what would fast food like McDonalds taste like to them? they have never been exposed to artificial preservatives, such as sorbic acid, potassium sorbate, and calcium disodium EDTA, all used in fast food. would it taste like chemicals, much like the people who try fast food for the first time, or taste like heaven? they have the same taste buds as humans. what effects would it have on their bodies, having lower metabolisms than us humans?.{EDIT} If you referred to my other question "can my alien species be possible with real science?" then that reveals what they are like. they have lower metabolisms than humans, about 3/4 of the average joe they have tongues and senses of smell almost identical to humans.

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closed as primarily opinion-based by Cyn, James K, Measure of despare., Renan, SJuan76 Apr 6 at 13:15

Many good questions generate some degree of opinion based on expert experience, but answers to this question will tend to be almost entirely based on opinions, rather than facts, references, or specific expertise. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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    $\begingroup$ This would be a hard question to answer even if it were "what would fast food taste like to humans who have lived their entire lives on an island with only native foods to eat?" If you're asking about non-humans on Earth, the question is much harder because there's a huge variety in how animals taste. But you're asking about aliens. It could be anything. Including that they don't perceive taste at all, or at least not in the same way we do. $\endgroup$ – Cyn Apr 6 at 6:10
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I'm going to assume that if the aliens had similar taste buds to humans, that they may have similar digestive organs as well. If that's the case, then you might as well take them as blank slates in the same way as you would a human child. This, however would be a mistake, or rather, it may be true for newborn or infant aliens, but not quite so for an adult alien. Age would be a determining factor to some degree, as taste buds, just as all our senses, diminish over time. This, coupled with the common diet of said aliens would also be a crucial determinate in their experience. To some extent, parralels can once again be drawn with the human race and their social and sensory interaction with foreign cultures and foods. Foreign culture, routines, rituals and indeed, cuisine, are often described as alien. Traditional eastern and western diets have various extremes which at first have a great impact, but over time, the senses dull, we become accustomed to the taste and the overpowering sensations subside somewhat.

Think back to the first time you had a curry, or a sherbet lemon or a pungent fish, unusual meat, strong cheese, Thai food, or even your first McDonalds, if you can remember it. If you can't, go out and experience a food/meal which seems alien to you, something outside your comfort zone, or simply something you haven't tried before which is unlikely to be exactly like anything else you have ever eaten.

As someone else pointed out, chances are, they will get stomach ache, salivate too much, get bloated, maybe have some sort of toilet trouble and a sore belly, but for some reason, they wouldn't say no to another one. As for what thru taste, yeah, it might leave an after taste,turn all that extra saliva into some kind of spittle solution and quite possibly they might even experience some conscious awareness of the chemical taste and manufactured meat, the grease, their breath seems hot and heavy and they can't stop licking their lips from the foul cheesy gooey salty sweetness.

Some comparison to their everyday typical diet might provide a frame of reference as to how it differs to a McDonalds burger.

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what effects would it have on their bodies, having slightly lower metabolisms than us humans?

See, this depends on precisely what metabolism you give them. Dogs react very badly to chocolate, and they're mammals.

Honestly I'd say that they'd probably get some form of stomachache or other sickness from the food. Humans have a rather robust system for filtering toxins (see hot peppers, AKA "how much insecticide can we eat?," among other crazy stuff humans chow down on.)

And that's assuming that they have a metabolism that's close enough. Just a few changes means that some parts of the food won't actually do anything, and those parts (sugars, amino acids, various sorts of nutrients) will "a best pass straight through, and at worst be a pair of clogs tossed into the machine, with anything from minor aches or allergic reactions to outright death.

would it taste like chemicals, much like the people who try fast food for the first time, or taste like heaven? they have the same taste buds as humans

Well, taste also has to do with the sense of smell, but I'll just assume that's just as similar. Which it shouldn't be. Unless your species evolved with very similar plants around, its sense of smell will be different. ((There's also the matter of what you want to to do with the story as well to consider.))

Anyway, this is where you have a lot of leeway. Just remember that any species is going to have physiological mechanisms to reward getting calories (AKA food tastes good) and punish eating poison (AKA children spit out bitter greens.)

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