Scientists May Have Just Discovered The 6th Taste

Sweet, salty, sour, bitter, umami, and now ... drum roll, please ... fatty.

Think about it: none of the other tastes could possibly describe that melt-in-your-mouth sensation created by a crispy piece of bacon.

However, according to a new study in the journal Chemical Senses, it isn't as pleasant as you might imagine when it's isolated from the other tastes. "It is a sensation one would get from eating oxidized oil," Rick Mattes, a professor of nutrition science at Purdue University and an author of the study, explains to NPR. In other words: it's kind of putrid.

When subjects were given samples of bitter, umami, and fatty tastes, they "sorted fatty acids in a league of their own," which the researchers suggest calling "oleogustus." (I honestly don't see that name sticking, but we'll see!)

So, while we usually associate fat with a specific type of mouthfeel — a texture, really — this study focuses on a taste we've never recognized before.

"This may be why low-fat foods have been generally unsuccessful so far," Mattes said. "If we recognize fat as a taste we could start developing better low-fat products." But scientists aren't yet sure what that would entail. Maybe a fancy new fat garnish to sprinkle over dishes?

Want to know if you should you go Keto? Paleo? Whole 30? Deciding what to eat to feel your best shouldn’t be complicated. We’ve removed the guesswork to give you all the best nutrition tips & tools, all in one place. Ready to kickstart your health journey? We’re here to guide you.

Related Posts

Popular Stories

Sites We Love

Loading next article...

Your article and new folder have been saved!