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April 3, 2008

Taste is not the reason for consuming sweets

A study in the March 27 issue of the scientific journal Neuron reports that mice prefers sweets, even when they can’t taste. From a CBC News Report:

Researchers at Duke University Center in Durham, N.C., genetically altered the brains of mice, making them unable to taste "sweet,” then gave them either a higher-calorie sugar solution or a non-caloric artificially sweetened one. 

“They found the mice showed a decided preference for the higher-calorie sugar solution — indicating that the calorie content — not the taste — likely governed their decision.”

“The preference for the sugar developed after ten minutes of an hour-long feeding session, they found.”

“The study shows that even in the absence of taste, physiologic changes in the body let the brain know a high-calorie food has been ingested.”

Link to the online study in Neuron: Food Reward in the Absence of Taste Receptor Signaling

Link to Health Day News report on this topic.

Thank you to William Mitchell College of Law student Joan Pearson for preparing this post.

April 3, 2008 in Scientific studies | Permalink

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Comments

I'd love to see this done again with caloric solutions with fat and protein in addition to the sugar solution. Tehn maybe it isn't just cravings for calories. Perhaps driving up insulin and roller coaster blood sugar creates cravings for sugar.

Posted by: Anna | Apr 4, 2008 5:05:41 PM

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