You taste not only with taste buds, but also with your gut. Locally, Sacramento and Davis scientists at the University of California, Davis study how people taste and what they taste with other than their tastebuds. Check out the University of California, Davis article, "Culinary Communications and Consulting - Taste Bud Tales." If you've wondered how food tasters are trained, looking over decades of training tasters at the University of California, Davis, Ann Noble, creator of the Aroma Wheel and Heymann's predecessor in the sensory slot at UC Davis, finds no significant differences between men and women.
"Focus is the main thing," she says in the article, Culinary Communications and Consulting - Taste Bud Tales. "If you focus, you will do better, even with a slight cold." At Chico State, Marian Baldy similarly reports no notable differences in gender sensitivity from her 5,000 wine appreciation students over 30 years. Ditto Karen MacNeil, author of The Wine Bible and chair of the professional wine studies program at the Culinary Institute of America at Greystone—though MacNeil notes that women frequently start her classes with sharper verbal abilities. Then what about people who not only taste with their taste buds, but also with their gut?
Gut taste mechanisms are abnormal in diabetes sufferers says a new study of how the intestines rather than the tongue tastes sweet food and how the taste differs to the gut between those who do and those who don't have type 2 diabetes
Researchers at the University of Adelaide have discovered that the way the gut "tastes" sweet food may be defective in sufferers of type 2 diabetes, leading to problems with glucose uptake. This is the first time that abnormal control of so-called "sweet taste receptors" in the human intestine has been described by researchers in a new study of gut taste mechanisms and how they differ in those with type 2 diabetes.
The work could have implications for a range of health and nutrition problems experienced by diabetes patients. This study has been funded by the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) and Diabetes Australia. The results have been published online ahead of print this week in the international journal Diabetes. Researchers at the University of Adelaide have discovered that the way the gut "tastes" sweet food may be defective in sufferers of type 2 diabetes, leading to problems with glucose uptake.
Dr Richard Young, Senior Postdoctoral Researcher in the University of Adelaide's Nerve-Gut Research Laboratory, says taste buds aren't the only way the body detects sweetness
"When we talk about 'sweet taste', most people think of tasting sweet food on our tongue, but scientists have discovered that sweet taste receptors are present in a number of sites in the human body. We're now just beginning to understand the importance of the sweet taste receptors in the human intestine and what this means for sufferers of type 2 diabetes," Dr Young says in the August 23, 2013 news release, "Gut taste mechanisms are abnormal in diabetes sufferers."
In his study, Dr Young compared healthy adults with type 2 diabetic adults. He found that the control of sweet taste receptors in the intestine of the healthy adults enabled their bodies to effectively regulate glucose intake 30 minutes after exposure to glucose. However, abnormalities in the diabetic adults resulted in more rapid glucose uptake.
"When sweet taste receptors in the intestine detect glucose, they trigger a response that may regulate the way glucose is absorbed by the intestine. Our studies show that in diabetes patients, the glucose is absorbed more rapidly and in greater quantities than in healthy adults," Dr Young says in the news release.
"This shows that diabetes is not just a disorder of the pancreas and of insulin - the gut plays a bigger role than researchers have previously considered. This is because the body's own management of glucose uptake may rely on the actions of sweet taste receptors, and these appear to be abnormally controlled in people with type 2 diabetes."
Dr Young says more research is needed to better understand these mechanisms in the gut
"So far, we've seen what happens in people 30 minutes after glucose is delivered to the intestine, but we also need to study what happens over the entire period of digestion. There are also questions about whether or not the body responds differently to artificial sweeteners compared with natural glucose," he says in the news release, Gut taste mechanisms are abnormal in diabetes sufferers. "By gaining a better understanding of how these mechanisms in the gut work, we hope that eventually this will assist to better manage or treat diabetes in the future." Interestingly, at another university, the type of an infant's food intake and type 1 diabetes risk is being studied.
Infants' food linked to higher or lower type 1 diabetes risk
In another study, researchers from the University of Colorado Denver (Colorado School of Public Health) and the CU School of Medicine's Barbara Davis Center for Diabetes, have found, according to the July 9, 2013 news release, "Infants' food linked to higher, lower Type 1 diabetes risk" that the risk of type 1 diabetes in an infant goes down if the mother is still breast-feeding the baby when solid foods, particularly those containing wheat or barley, are introduced into the diet.
These researchers found that children may have a greater risk of developing Type 1 diabetes (an autoimmune disease) if they are given their first fruits before four months or first eat rice and oats after six months. Does this study link findings with prior studies showing some children are so sensitive to grains that it rots their teeth before the age of three?
Grains and fruit could cause high blood surges of sugar in babies and other sensitivities. Some parents give solid foods too early. You can read more about type 1 diabetes as an autoimmune disease at the site, "Autoimmune disorders associated with type 1 diabetes mellitus."
Infants who get their first solid food before 4 months of age and after six months may have a higher risk of developing Type 1 diabetes. The risk goes down if the mother is still breast-feeding the baby when solid foods, particularly those containing wheat or barley, are introduced into the diet. The incidence of Type 1 diabetes is growing worldwide, especially among children less than five years old.
Infants' food is linked to higher, lower Type 1 diabetes risk. Infants who get their first solid food before 4 months of age and after 6 months may have a higher risk of developing Type 1 diabetes
The results were unveiled in July 2013 in the Journal of the American Medical Association publication JAMA Pediatrics. "For children who are introduced to solid food before four months of age, the risk of developing Type 1 diabetes is almost two times higher than for children introduced to solid foods at 4 or 5 months of age," says Jill Norris, MPH, PhD, chair of the Department of Epidemiology for the public health school, according to the news release, "Infants' food linked to higher, lower Type 1 diabetes risk." The findings align with the guidelines of the American Academy of Pediatrics on when to begin solid foods.
The research, supported by grants from the National Institutes of Health, looked at Colorado children with an increased genetic risk for Type 1 diabetes. Researchers noted when the children began on solid food, what foods they ate and whether they developed Type 1 diabetes. "The data suggest that parents should wait to introduce any solid foods until after the 4-month birthday," Norris, one of the authors of the study, says in the news release, Infants' food linked to higher, lower Type 1 diabetes risk.
"And when baby is ready, solid foods should be introduced by the 6-month birthday or soon after, preferably while the mother is still breast-feeding the baby, which may reduce the risk of Type 1 diabetes." Norris explains in the news release, that more research should be conducted to explore another finding of the study – that kids may have a greater risk of Type 1 diabetes if they are given their first fruits before four months or first eat rice and oats after six months.