Author:
Maura Krestar
Subject:
Psychology
Material Type:
Reading
Level:
Academic Lower Division
Tags:
  • Flavor
  • Gustation
  • Olfaction
  • Omnivore
  • Perception
  • Psychology
  • Sensation
  • Sensation and Perception
  • Smell
  • THECB Grantee
  • Taste
    License:
    Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial Share Alike
    Language:
    English

    Chapter: Taste and Smell (NOBA)

    Overview

    By Linda Bartoshuk and Derek Snyder

    University of Florida. 

    Humans are omnivores (able to survive on many different foods). The omnivore’s dilemma is to identify foods that are healthy and avoid poisons. Taste and smell cooperate to solve this dilemma. Stimuli for both taste and smell are chemicals. Smell results from a biological system that essentially permits the brain to store rough sketches of the chemical structures of odor stimuli in the environment. Thus, people in very different parts of the world can learn to like odors (paired with calories) or dislike odors (paired with nausea) that they encounter in their worlds. Taste information is preselected (by the nature of the receptors) to be relevant to nutrition. No learning is required; we are born loving sweet and hating bitter. Taste inhibits a variety of other systems in the brain. Taste damage releases that inhibition, thus intensifying sensations...

    Chapter: Taste and Smell (NOBA)

    By Linda Bartoshuk and Derek Snyder

    University of Florida. 

    Humans are omnivores (able to survive on many different foods). The omnivore’s dilemma is to identify foods that are healthy and avoid poisons. Taste and smell cooperate to solve this dilemma. Stimuli for both taste and smell are chemicals. Smell results from a biological system that essentially permits the brain to store rough sketches of the chemical structures of odor stimuli in the environment. Thus, people in very different parts of the world can learn to like odors (paired with calories) or dislike odors (paired with nausea) that they encounter in their worlds. Taste information is preselected (by the nature of the receptors) to be relevant to nutrition. No learning is required; we are born loving sweet and hating bitter. Taste inhibits a variety of other systems in the brain. Taste damage releases that inhibition, thus intensifying sensations like those evoked by fats in foods. Ear infections and tonsillectomies both can damage taste. Adults who have experienced these conditions experience intensified sensations from fats and enhanced palatability of high-fat foods. This may explain why individuals who have had ear infections or tonsillectomies tend to gain weight.