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How the temperature of food affects our tasteFeatured science projectScience project video

Abstract

This experiment was performed to find out how the temperature of our food will influence our taste sensation. The taste buds on our tongues are sensitive to temperature. Hence, in order to taste the full flavor of the food that we eat, should we eat it when served piping hot, warm, or cool?

Hypothesis

As the temperature of the sweetened water is increased, our ability to distinguish between a sweeter and a less sweet liquid is improved.

Scientific Terms

Taste bud, senses, nerves

Background

Sense of taste

Human beings have 5 senses ?sight, sound, smell, taste and touch. Taste enables us to appreciate the flavors in our food. It is this ability that helps us discern the different flavors in our food and heightens our enjoyment of the food.

The 4 basic types of taste are sweet, sour, salty and bitter. We are able to perceive taste with our tongues due to the specific areas of our tongue which are sensitive to that taste. The taste buds in these specific zones help up taste our food. Look below at Figure 1 to see where these taste buds are located. When food comes into contact with our taste buds, an electric signal is generated in our tongue. This electric signal is then sent to the brain through our nerves and we immediately recognize the taste.

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Complexity level:
3
Project cost ($):
10
Time required:
1 hour to prepare, 2 hours for observation
Material availability:
Easily found
Safety concerns:

None