However, the scientists from Purdue University might beg to differ. There have been debates about the taste of fat, but now these researchers managed to isolate it.
This may be called the sixth taste. Until now, we have been used with salty, sour, sweet, bitter and savory. Now it seems that the sixth – “oleagustus” , which combines the words oil and taste, might be added on the list.
This taste can be associated with the sensation the tongue identifies when we eat food that contains fatty acids.
During the study, the participants had to taste various food samples containing fatty acids in combination with chemicals of the other tastes. They were unable to detect any aroma because they had their noses clipped.
The researchers realized that the fatty acids determined certain tastes, which varied from sour to bitter. What was most interesting was the fact that most of the volunteers to the trial did not like the taste, regarding it as ” irritating and consistently unpalatable “.
Nevertheless, not all the participants were able to detect it. The researchers reported that most of them did, but about 36 percent of them couldn’t.
Even so, the fact that the majority of the people involved sensed the taste of fat is an important finding.
“Our experiments provide a missing element in the evidence that fat has a taste sensation, and that it is different from other tastes,” said lead study author, Professor Richard Mattes , who works at the Ingestive Behavior Research Center at Purdue University in Indiana .
When fatty acids are combined with other elements, such as texture and aroma, they can make the food taste either better or worse. While there are situation where fat can make food more appealing, other forms of fat can make it repulsive.
According to the researchers, these findings are very important because they can help people who suffer from obesity. ” Identifying the taste of fat has a range of important health implications. At high concentrations, the signal it generates would dissuade the eating of rancid foods,” said Professor Matters.
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