Before the first bite we see what is on our plate. How food looks has an impact on how we expect it to taste. Appetising food begins with sight and smell.We all know that our sense of smell is essential to our enjoyment of food. When we have a bad cold, food tastes bland. When we smell cooking, we salivate.
As our eyes, smell receptors and taste buds sense the food, our brain is already accessing previous memories of eating this food, which produces a sense of anticipation of what we are going to eat. Enjoyment is enhanced by this resonance with pleasurable food-memories.
The first bite is the point where teeth, tongue and mouth sense the texture of the food. As we chew, another cascade of pleasurable sensations is produced by the texture of the food: crunchy or smooth or a combination. We seem to prefer combinations of textures, with layers of flavours. This produces a sequence of changing sensations: taste, smell, texture, “mouth-feel” and sound. Saliva starts to break down the food so that different flavours are now released.As we swallow, these additional flavours are detected at the back of the nose by our sense of smell, and the flavour lingers.
These sensory pleasures are all there in the food, for the enjoying. Every mouthful we pay attention to gives us this amazing sensory experience. But when our attention is elsewhere, we can miss most of the pleasure. Focusing on food is one of the key ways to enhance our enjoyment of it. We get much more pleasure-per-calorie when we do this, and if we are aiming to lose weight this is a real bonus.
In order to get maximum pleasure-per-calorie, Simply…
Slow down your eating
Savour what you eat