Remember that one FRIENDS episode where Chandler gets butt hurt over Joey saving Ross, when in reality, he was just trying to protect his sandwich from a bullet? And then Joey justifies that ridiculous move by claiming that it’s the ~*greatest*~ sandwich in the world, even going as far as getting mad at Chandler for sniffing it because “half the taste is in the smell”? Well, Joey Tribbiani was right!
Low-calorie, low-salt, low-sugar versions of our favorite foods are understandably less appetizing. Most people who opt for these versions only do so because they want to be healthier—not necessarily because they LOVE how they taste. Sugar is addictive and is hard to shake, that’s why it’s those same people who eventually fall back into unhealthy eating habits.
Researcher Thierry Thomas-Danguin is attempting to make low-calorie foods more appealing by influencing our sense of smell, which is closely linked to our sense of taste. That’s why when your nose is blocked, nawawalan ka ng panlasa. Thomas-Danguin and his team believe that manipulating the way a low-calorie snack smells could make them taste better; it could even make that unsalted cracker taste like it’s been swimming in sodium.
In his study, Thomas-Danguin developed a device called GC-OAT (Gas Chromatograph-Olfactometry Associated Taste), used to “isolate aroma molecules in food.” They use it on participants while they’re eating, to see if the aroma they introduce affects the taste of their food. And it does!
The research is ongoing so we can’t entirely say that we’ve found the answer to our dieting struggles, but the odds are looking pretty damn good!
Follow Ysa on Instagram.