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Latest Sweetness Stories

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2008-03-26 14:25:00

The brain can sense the calories in food, independent of the taste mechanism, researchers have found in studies with mice. Their finding that the brain's reward system is switched on by this "sixth sense" machinery could have implications for understanding the causes of obesity. For example, the findings suggest why high-fructose corn syrup, widely used as a sweetener in foods, might contribute to obesity.Ivan de Araujo and colleagues published their findings in the March 27, 2008, issue of...

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2008-03-17 16:00:00

Similarities highlight environment's role in shaping evolution of taste preferencesAccording to researchers at the Monell Center, fruit flies are more like humans in their responses to many sweet tastes than are almost any other species. The diverse range of molecules that humans experience as sweet do not necessarily taste sweet to other species. For example, aspartame, a sweetener used by humans, does not taste sweet to rats and mice. However, fruit flies respond positively to most...

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2008-02-26 09:10:00

Primer describes current understanding of human taste perception and biologyDespite the significance of taste to both human gratification and survival, a basic understanding of this primal sense is still unfolding. Taste provides both pleasure and protection. Often taken for granted, the sense of taste evaluates everything humans put into their mouths. Taste mediates recognition of a substance and the final decision process before it is either swallowed and taken into the body, or rejected as...

2008-02-11 09:55:00

Cutting the connection between sweets and calories may confuse the body, making it harder to regulate intakeWASHINGTON "” Want to lose weight? It might help to pour that diet soda down the drain. Researchers have laboratory evidence that the widespread use of no-calorie sweeteners may actually make it harder for people to control their intake and body weight. The findings appear in the February issue of Behavioral Neuroscience, which is published by the American Psychological...

2005-11-07 13:40:00

A low-calorie sweetener that tastes like sugar and could help control diseases like diabetes and obesity may be closer to reality thanks to research published today. Scientists at The University of Manchester and The University of Maryland School of Medicine in Baltimore have made a major advance in understanding what makes a substance taste sweet. The discovery could help pave the way for the development of low-calorie sweeteners that mimic natural sugar and leave no bitter aftertaste....

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2005-11-01 18:15:00

By Amy Norton NEW YORK -- The tongue may indeed have a taste for cheesecake, french fries and butter cookies, according to study published Tuesday. In experiments with rodents, French scientists identified a receptor on the tongue that appears to detect dietary fat. This counters the traditional view that the taste buds pick up only five basic flavors: sweet, sour, salty, bitter and "umami," -- a flavor associated with the food additive monosodium glutamate (MSG). The fact that the tongue...

2005-08-29 15:49:21

BETHESDA, Md. (August 29, 2005) "“ It's no secret that George Bush the Elder doesn't like broccoli. That he's not alone is no surprise. But the range of foods that many people won't eat because they are sensitive to "bitter" taste, or, in the case of non-sugar sweeteners, an "unacceptable aftertaste," is longer than you might think. These include spinach, lettuce and for some, even citrus fruits and juices. "This is not just an esthetic or parenting issue, but a major dietary and...

2005-07-26 14:43:29

In WASHINGTON story of July 25 headlined "Why cats will never live the sweet life," please read in fourth paragraph ... Xia Li, a molecular geneticist at the Monell Chemical Senses Center, a nonprofit research institute in Philadelphia, who helped lead the study ... instead of ... Xia Li, a molecular geneticist at Cornell University in New York, who helped lead the study ... WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Cats may like ice cream, but it is not the sugary taste that appeals to them because they...

2005-07-26 14:40:00

WASHINGTON -- Cats may like ice cream, but it is not the sugary taste that appeals to them because they are genetically unable to taste sweet flavors, researchers reported on Monday. Domestic cats and big cats alike have a slightly different version of the sweet receptor gene than other mammals, the British and U.S. scientists found. Any cat owner knows that cats have individual preferences, but cats will turn their noses up at sugary treats that do not contain some other ingredient such as...

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2005-07-25 00:45:00

SAN FRANCISCO -- Cats are notoriously finicky eaters, as millions of pet owners can attest. Now, there's a scientific theory explaining, at least in part, why cats have such snobby eating habits: genetics. Researchers at the Monell Chemical Senses Center in Philadelphia and their collaborators said Sunday they found a dysfunctional feline gene that probably prevents cats from tasting sweets, a sensation nearly every other mammal on the planet experiences to varying degrees. Researchers took...


Word of the Day
omphalos
  • The navel or umbilicus.
  • In Greek archaeology: A central boss, as on a shield, a bowl, etc.
  • A sacred stone in the temple of Apollo at Delphi, believed by the Greeks to mark the 'navel' or exact center-point of the earth.
'Omphalos' comes from the ancient Greek.
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