Science Questions

Does not having a sense of smell put someone at a disadvantage when tasting food?

Sun, 7th Oct 2012

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Question

Connor, from Tillingham asked:

I've never had any sense of smell whatsoever. My wife has a good sense of smell. Quite often, we totally agree that something turns up to be delicious and sometimes we violently disagree. I’d like to know actually because I don’t have a sense of smell, am I actually arguing with a disadvantage? Thank you very much.

Answer

The Human NoseDuncan -   Yes, definitely arguing with a disadvantage.  It means that things that have salt or sour flavours, or bitter flavours, you will be more sensitive to perhaps than she is and the other thing that’s going to matter is that people who are used to having both, when they lose their sense of smell, they actually believe they can't taste anything.  A good medic will test them – salt, sweet, sour, bitter – yes, you still got those, but if you're getting them by themselves without smell, then they’ll be doing all of the work, so you'll want very tasty food.

 

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