How fat in food influences flavour perception
Washington: Researchers have for the first time found that fat in food can reduce activity in several areas of the brain which are responsible for processing taste, aroma and reward.
The findings are the result of a joint study carried out by The University of Nottingham and the multinational food company Unilever.
The research provides the food industry with better understanding of how in the future it might be able to make healthier, less fatty food products without negatively affecting their overall taste and enjoyment.
This fascinating three-year study investigated how the brains of a group of participants in their 20s would respond to changes in the fat content of four different fruit emulsions they tasted while under an MRI scanner.
All four samples were of the same thickness and sweetness, but one contained flavour with no fat, while the other three contained fat with different flavour release properties.
The research found that the areas of the participants`` brains which are responsible for the perception of flavour, such as the somatosensory cortices and the anterior, mid and posterior insula, were significantly more activated when the non-fatty sample was tested compared to the fatty emulsions despite having the same flavour perception.
It is important to note that increased activation in these brain areas does not necessarily result in increased perception of flavour or reward.
"This is the first brain study to assess the effect of fat on the processing of flavour perception and it raises questions as to why fat emulsions suppress the cortical response in brain areas linked to the processing of flavour and reward. It also remains to be determined what the implications of this suppressive effect are on feelings of hunger, satiety and reward," said Dr Joanne Hort, Associate Professor in Sensory Science at The University of Nottingham.
Unilever food scientist Johanneke Busch, based at the company`s Research and Development laboratories in Vlaardingen, Netherlands added: "There is more to people``s enjoyment of food than the product``s flavour, like its mouthfeel, its texture and whether it satisfies hunger, so this is a very important building block for us to better understand how to innovate and manufacture healthier food products which people want to buy."
The research has been made available in the Springer journal Chemosensory Perception.
Download the all new Zee News app for Android and iOS to stay up to date with latest headlines and news stories in Politics, Entertainment, Sports, Technology, Business and much more from India and around the world.
More from India
More from World
More from Sports
More from Entertaiment
- Dr Subhash Chandra Show: How to expand your existing business
- Entire Indian force can't defend Kashmir from terrorists, says Farooq Abdullah
- Prashant Bhushan questions Arvind Kejriwal on Lokpal through press conference
- UP: DM B Chandrakala participates in anti-riots drill in Bulandshahr
- PM Modi addresses the nation during Maan Ki baat
- Women fit only to deliver children, gender equality un-islamic: Kerala Muslim leader
- Sheena Bora murder: Why did Indrani send servant to Kolkata to get illegal drugs?
- Russian MP dies while ‘having sex’ inside car - Read
- Modi govt 'promoting Brahmanism' in the name of 'Hindu Rashtravad': Arundhati Roy
- Ban on Salman Rushdie's 'The Satanic Verses' by Rajiv Gandhi govt was a mistake: P Chidambaram