Over the past few decades, researchers have become increasingly interested in the adaptations guiding the avoidance of disease-causing organisms. Here we discuss the latest developments in this area, including a recently developed information-processing model of the adaptations underlying pathogen avoidance. We argue that information-processing models like the one presented here can both increase our understanding of how individuals trade-off pathogen avoidance against other fitness relevant goals and elucidate the nature of individual differences in pathogen avoidance. With respect to pathogen disgust in particular, we show how contact avoidance can be traded-off against other tasks, including food choice, cooperation, and mate choice.
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