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sabor (PO)
sabor (ES)
saveur, goût (F)
gusto (I)
taste (GB)

The sense of taste (also gustatorik from lat. Gustare = taste, taste) serves to control the ingested food. He counts just like that odor to the chemical senses. In a broader sense, the sensation of taste is a complex interaction of the gustatory (tasting) taste and taste olfactory (smelling) sense of smell. This is supplemented with tactile or trigeminal Tactile, pain and temperature information from the oral cavity. The latter includes feelings, for example sharp (hot) and astringent (Effect on red wines rich in tannins, which should not be confused with bitter). In the narrower sense, however, the taste consists of relatively few different flavors that are absorbed through the tongue and sometimes also through the pharynx.

Tongue with the flavors and receptors

For a long time, only four flavors were known, namely bitter. salty. angry and sweet, In the 1990s was the fifth flavor umami (also meaty, hearty) defined and scientifically recognized. Finally, in 2011 the existence of receptors for fat and so greasy identified as a possible sixth flavor. Other possible taste qualities under discussion are “water” (tastes of “nothing” in pure form), metallic and alkaline, The perception of a flavoring depends on the amount depending on the substance and is considered Perceptual threshold (Limit).

The taste receptor cells are arranged in buds that are on the tongue in the taste buds, but also in the mucous membranes of the oral cavity. About 25% are located on the front two thirds of the tongue, another 50% on the rear third. The rest are spread over the soft palate, larynx, nasopharynx and the upper esophagus. There are concentrated areas on the tongue for the individual flavors. For sweet this is the tip of the tongue, for salty the front area of the tongue and for sour the back area of the tongue (left and right respectively), and for bitter the upper area of the tongue in the back area. The areas, however, are not clearly delimited, but flowing.

The taste sensation is passed on to the brain and is only “translated” or perceived here. The disturbance of the taste perception is called dysgeusia, the loss of the sense of taste is called ageusia. Both can be caused by various diseases, but also by medication. The taste was developed in the course of evolution in order to enable conclusions to be drawn about the nutritional value and the tolerance of food. So sweetness stands for carbohydrate, as well as fat and umami for protein-rich dishes that are high nutritional value exhibit. The salty taste or hunger for salty things in turn helps people to keep the mineral balance in the body as balanced as possible. Bitter and sour taste, on the other hand, indicate toxic or spoiled food.

The number of papillae is constantly decreasing, so the sense of taste weakens with age. Humans are able to relearn biologically / genetically negative sensory impressions as positive. Social pressure also plays an important role in this. For example, only a few can manage it beer to resist, as disgustingly bitter it may taste when you first enjoy it. The main responsibility for the gustatory (g) and trigeminal (t) sensations are:

The many flavorings (Fragrances), however, are used by receptors on a postage stamp-sized area in the upper nasal cavity odor perceived. When enjoying food and drinks as well as Weingenuss these impressions of the tongue and nose received in the brain mix to form an overall impression, so that the definitive origin can no longer be traced. Combining the taste sensations and complementing the scents creates a complex variety of sensory nuances.

The human nose is with that sense of smell but far superior to the tongue or the sense of taste. Everyone knows the phenomenon that you can identify the flavors of a cold, but the food "tastes of nothing" - but correctly it should mean "smell of nothing". The flavors relate to the content of non-fermented residual sugar and be in the range dry to sweet shown. These terms are legally regulated with grams / liter. See the relevant lists below sparkling wine (Sparkling wine, champagne etc.) and sugar content (Still wine).

Left picture (edited): Copyright: Peter Hermes Furian
Right picture (edited): Von NEUROtiker - Own work , CC BY-SA 3.0 , Link

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