The New Taste Candidate

During these taste sensors on the human tongue can distinguish be sweet, salty, bitter, and sour. Later, experts agree the food is tasty, adds umami taste to the palette of the human tongue.

But food scientists did not stop at the five flavors. Some researchers claim there are other flavors that can be detected by taste bud tongue, metallic taste to the spicy start to burn the tongue.

Elemental calcium is essential for the body, especially for muscle contraction, cell-level communication, and bone growth. The ability to feel it in every chew there will likely be a very useful tool for survival.

Rats appear to have been aware of such benefits. Recent research reveals that the tongue has two rodent taste receptor for calcium. According to Michael Tordoff, a behavioral geneticist at the Monell Chemical Senses Center in Philadelphia, one of the receptor was also found in the human tongue, although its role in sensing calcium directly is unknown.

Calcium clearly has taste. However, unconsciously, both human and mouse do not like the taste of it, people would probably describe it as bitter and chalky taste, although the concentration of calcium was very low. Tordoff suspect our ability to feel might be developed to prevent the calcium we consume too much.

Receptors of the tongue that is too sensitive to calcium-rich foods, like spinach, may explain why four out of five Americans does not have enough calcium. "There are strong relationships between people do not like vegetables and calcium," Tordoff said.

Unlike the case with milk and other dairy products are also rich in calcium but friendly on the tongue. "That's because the calcium in it bound to the fat, so we do not feel these minerals at all," Tordoff said.

There is a possibility that the calcium receptor is also responsible for the other six candidates flavor, called kokumi. In Japanese, kokumi means "pleasant" and "yummy." Kokumi proposed by researchers from the Japanese food company, Ajinomoto, which has been a decade ago helped convince scientists and experts the world to receive the umami taste, the fifth basic taste.

Ajinomoto researchers published a paper in early 2010 which showed that there are certain compounds, including amino acid L-histidine, glutathione in yeast extract, and protamine in the sperm of fish, and other foodstuffs, which interacts with calcium receptors on our tongues.

Rich flavor that can be found in food that is cooked with fire or temperature is not so hot in a long time. Foods that are cooked long as it generally contains higher levels of kokumi.

But Japanese scientists this proposal may sound a bit odd to Western scientists. Representatives have visited the team of researchers Ajinomoto Tordoff and bring examples of foods that have a high sense of kokumi. "But we do not understand about what they are talking about," he said. "Kokumi probably something that is not aligned with Western flavor palette."

The fans liked spicy food burning feeling in their tongue when eating spicy pepper. Some Asian cultures regard these sensations as a basic taste, known in Western culture as piquance, derived from the French which means "spicy but appetizing." But food scientists do not classify an undeniable sensation as a taste.

Piquance compounds, such as capsaicin from the pepper, the sensor immediately activates our tongue, not just the taste receptor. Key receptor for spicy flavor is called TRPV1. "These receptors function as a kind of molecular thermometer," said John E. Hayes, professor of food science at Penn State, the United States.

Generally, these receptors send nerve signals to the brain when exposed to heat in the substance of around 42 degrees Celsius, due to the heat pain threshold for humans. Capsaicin receptor TRPV1 match the criteria that will lower the activation temperature to 35 degrees Celsius, colder than body temperature.

"Suddenly, these receptors send signals to the brain that the temperature is hot," said Hayes. "While the food itself does not have heat." TRPVl receptors appear to exist throughout the body causing the mucus membranes in the nose or eyes also felt the hot sting.

Foods that have the opposite sensation is a sensation of fresh pepper from peppermint or menthol. The workings of sensory perceptions same is true in this sense, the touch-activated receptors on the tongue, namely TPRM8. The trick the brain receptors to detect a chill in the normal oral temperature.

As the sensation of touch, both piquance and cold sensations are transmitted to the brain via the trigeminal nerve, not three nerves are commonly used by taste.

"A series of nerves that carry sensation of cooling and heat is different to that used by the sensation of taste," said Hayes.

Although since 1500 the Germans had been regarded as the taste sensation of heat, a long debate about the status of the temperature appropriately referred to as "flavor is not over."

Another controversial "taste" proposed is metallicity, like gold and silver, in the oral cavity. Some Asian cultures put a sheet of gold or silver on the snacks, like candy or a curry, while Europeans often decorate a cake with a thin sheet of precious metal.

Although the sheet metal generally have no taste, garnish is sometimes reported to have a special flavor. The scientists showed that these sensations may be something to do with the electrical conductivity, which gives a small sting on the tongue.

"If you cut that puts coins containing zinc to the tongue, you will experience a metallic taste," said Harry Lawless, professor emeritus of food science at Cornell University. "It's like a small battery, which with a drop of saliva will produce a 550 millivolt."

But laboratory tests failed to activate receptors in the taste of metal, so that the electrical conductivity is not clear whether this can enrich the culinary world. "But we still open the door," said Lawless.

6. FAT
Scientists are still debating whether we can feel the fat tongue or simply feel the texture is like cream. Many people are fond of fatty snacks, from steaks to other foods that are fried in oil.

"Fat is a tremendous source of calories," said Linda Bartoshuk, a psychology & physiology at the University of Florida. "The brain encourages us to consume fat so that we can continue to survive."

Research shows that mice can sense fat, and it seems people can also feel it. The study, published in the British Journal of Nutrition in 2010 revealed a varied taste thresholds for fatty acids, long chain with glycerol up of fat, or lipid.

Interestingly, participants with higher sensitivity of fat-rich diet eat less fat than those who have low sensitivity. They are also more proportional stature. "These fatty acids tend to taste bitter in the mouth," Bartoshuk said, commenting on the research.

Strong candidate as the other sixth sense is carbon dioxide (CO2). When dissolved in liquid, gas gives a burst of fizz in carbonated drinks, like soda, beer, or champagne.

Tickling sensation of the tongue is the result of a burst bubble on the tongue, so it is considered in the category touch, not taste. "It's a little tricky because CO2 has always been considered as a stimulus tri-geminal," Tordoff said.

The scientists offered strong evidence of the carbon dioxide sensor on your tongue taste bud in a report in the journal Science in 2009. They found the enzyme carbonic anhydrase 4, found in sour taste sensory cells, which specifically detects carbon dioxide in rats.

Further evidence comes from the drug, commonly diasup by mountain climbers to avoid altitude sickness. Acetazolamide blocked the activity of the enzyme carbonic anhydrase 4. When it reached the top of the mountain and opened a bottle of beer or soda, the climber was reported that the drink was bland and boring. *** [TJANDRA DEWI | LIVESCIENCE | KORAN TEMPO 3762]
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