The Link Between Smell and Taste

What Affects Your Sense of Hunger?

Salon magazine has a decent interview on your sense of smell, and how it affects what you want to eat:

 I began to realize that increasingly smell was for sensing the flavor of food. It goes almost unrecognized as we eat our food because we think it all comes from taste in our mouths. The more research that I did on flavor, the more I realized that the sense of smell was the dominant sense in flavor — and that we are almost totally unaware of it.

The whole article is interesting, although someone familiar with this topic won’t find too much that’s new.

Smell and Taste Work Together

But understanding the link between your perceptions of food and what you eat is important. Your body forms “set points” and “triggers” for how much it wants to eat based on sensory input, and these signals are quite strong. Without realizing it, you’re exposed to these different sensory inputs throughout the day, which switch your hunger, cravings, and fullness on and off.

5 thoughts on “The Link Between Smell and Taste”

  1. Ah yes. I am a third grade teacher, and in teaching science to my kids, we did a taste test. I had the students close their eyes and plug their nose. I gave them each a Life Saver candy to pop in their mouths. They had to guess which color they got, without SEEING it or SMELLING it. The results? They could not taste it. I even had a group of adults try it, including myself, and we could not taste the flavor either. It all explains why when we have a stuffy nose, we cannot taste things properly!

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  2. Yep. All your senses are inter-connected, and if one is broken, they all are. My guess would be the adults would have a harder time tasting it than the kids, since they’ve lost some taste buds.

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  3. I recently had a taste-bud test done with diluted lemon juice in different concentrations. Apparently I have very weak taste buds! I guess they do disappear with age.

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  4. I figured that I would have weak taste buds as well, to be honest. I could never tell the difference when tasting selective things such as the simple testing. I think overall, the adults seem to have an older and more experienced taste buds. So if you your a kid, that would make some sense as well. Im glad that smelling things and tasting things work together though, it seem`s like I need each one equally.

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  5. I am a smoker and i can’t eat a full meal if i have a fag about an hour before. It affects me badly. For me visual cues also play a big role in my hunger.

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