Friday, October 01, 2010

Gosh You're Picky!

Most of my life, I've been told I'm a picky eater, especially when it comes to vegetables.

"Oh come on," people have said. "They won't kill you. They're good for you."

And I tried. Oh have I tried to eat those green things. I remember once in high school I was trying to follow this diet where you could lose 10 lbs in 7 days or something ridiculous like that and it said you had to eat 1 cup of green beans with dinner and it was all about foods being digested together and how your body reacted to them that made you lose the weight, so I was determined to eat these green beans. Only I couldn't stomach them. I cut them up into tiny pieces and swallowed them like pills so I wouldn't have to taste them.

As I've gotten older, I've gotten better about things. I'll eat salads now and occasionally broccoli if it's in a casserole and it's a small enough bite. I'll eat carrots - though again only in casseroles - and on a rare night, I'll eat beans if their taste is hidden with enough beef. Peas will go down if paired with corn or smothered in mashed potatoes.

So...you get the point.

Well, what if I did all this not because I just "didn't want to" but because I'm a supertaster?

I discovered this term while watching Freaky Eaters a few weeks ago and it got me thinking.

So I researched it and took an online test - which admittedly isn't conclusive, but it's a start. According to this test, I'm a supertaster.

I:

  • Perceive all tastes more intensely, particularly bitter tastes
  • Tend to be fussy about food and have strong food likes and dislikes
  • Usually don't like coffee, cabbage, Brussels sprouts and spinach
  • Have lots of papillae, the tiny bumps on the tongue that contain taste buds
  • Around 25% of people are said to be supertasters
Also, it says that Supertasters are also more prone to burning mouth syndrome, a condition in which a person's tongue or mouth feels like it's on fire. I haven't been diagnosed with this, but from time to time, my tongue will go raw and swollen and will feel like it is "burning". I even have a prescription mouth wash for it.

This also explains why I don't like to eat anything "hot". If I eat hot salsa, my lips and tongue feel like they're going to burn off and it's very hard to get the taste, or sensation, to go away.

Apparently, super-tastiness, is inherited. It's genetic and has nothing to do with a person's personality or unwillingness to try new foods.

So, the next time we eat together, please don't comment on the lack of variety - or green - on my plate. Thanks!

2 comments:

Kristin Tice said...

Ha. Too funny. Sorry for all the times I have said something about your vegetable habits. But I was thinking about you "feeding Bri from your plate." You better add a few more items to hers, unless she is a supertaster too! Maybe Josh is too...since he's so picky and only likes things at room temperature. Thanks for letting us all learn something new!

Kristin and Chase said...

You know I'll never comment on your lack of green. You do SO much better than Chase with just the few you will eat. Kudos for that!