Have you ever heard someone say that something you are eating is too rich or too sweet while you took no notice? Everyone’s preferences and sensitivities to taste are different, but because richness and sweetness typically derive from high-calorie, low-nutrient foods, it could mean that some of us are more likely to overindulge based on the way our taste buds have adapted.
The concept of training our taste buds to recognize when foods are too sugary or too salty is intriguing. This post from David Katz MD,the creator of NuVal nutrition scoring system, discusses how high amounts of sodium and sugar found in commercial products like pasta sauce and breakfast cereals have skyrocketed our tolerance levels. By consuming the same products with less added sodium and sugar, he argues, over time we might find that those foods we once enjoyed are now too sweet or too salty.
“Because if your taste buds have acclimated to high levels of [sugar and sodium], you will simply prefer more highly processed foods, and reject the simple, unadulterated flavors of simple foods close to nature. You will NOT eat “food, not too much, mostly plants,” because you won’t like doing that! And you, and perhaps your family, will miss out on the enormous health benefits associated with doing so.”
I side to agree with this idea and hope that it could really work. If we no longer enjoy the taste of something, we simply won’t eat much of it. Hopefully it really is that simple to enforce and encourage a healthy diet. If nothing else, cutting back on sugar and sodium couldn’t be a bad thing.