March 21, 2011


                    We all know that cigarette smoking is dangerous for our health and it is already a common fact that it affects the lungs which may cause a couple of detrimental diseases. Chain smokers wow I dunno how they can put up with smoking for such a long time. Their addiction to its taste is quite evident, but hmmm I wonder wont it also affect their taste perception since they are already habituated to the taste of nicotine? Well I cam across this intriguing article on how smoking can affect one's taste perception. 


Enoch, Harris and and Goldman (2001) explored smoking and sensitivity to the bitter taste. Participants were filtered into two categories based on questionnaires which explored background history, given as smokers and non-smokers. Different thresholds for the bitter taste were accounted for through use of respective solutions (in this case PTC) which contained increasing concentrations of compounds. Results revealed that bitter taste threshold was found to be higher in smokers and even more evident in those to have reported to smoke for a longer time. Interestingly, this study also emphasized how reduced sensitivity to bitterness can increase nicotine addiction. 

  WOW! So smokers can withstand bitterness more than non-smokers do. A lot of ideas came mind when I read this. Is this why some of the people I know would say that it feels good to smoke while having beer? Beer is so bitter, I hate beer! But some people still like it they're so weird, but perhaps their bitter threshold is greater. No wonder most people who smoke also have a preference for alcohol or maybe its just me stereotyping.
Also I can't help bu think: If those people addicted to smoking can have there taste receptors for sweetness increased, would it help them be less addicted to nicotine? hmmmmmm. I probably should read on more stuff about effects of smoking on taste :P

I dont ever wanna smoke! I mean can't imagine myself not being able to detect the bitter taste as well as one normally should. Most gross things,i mean those not good for us like poison and stuff are bitter. What if someone puts poison or other harmful compounds in what im eating/drinking and it would be hard for me to detect it? OMG that would be dangerous, I could die!! (sorry paranoid much haha)

            However on lighter note, I could only think of a few couple of things that may be good from increased threshold for bitter taste. AMPALAYA is bitter but it is also good for one,s health. SO maybe smokers can take advantage of their high thresholds for bitterness and eat more of this healthy vegetable!
Oh and most pills/medicines that I know of have bitter tastes. Maybe it wont be aversive as much ( well me taking medicines, pills are quite aversive because of the bitter taste that may accompany them) may and thus be more tolerable for smokers.

            BUT HEYYYY STILL, WE MUST ALWAYS TAKE NOTE : the overall health risks involved in smoking is way way way worse and still overrides any possible positive attributes involved in the alteration of bitterness threshold. Maybe perhaps if it was higher threshold for bitterness in one,s heart hihihi joke :))) BASTAAAA NO TO SMOKINGGG OK GUYS! or basta easy on the sticks ok :P Stay Healthy! :D

SIR DIWA! HELLOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!! thanks for everythinggg!! masaya ang 135, marami po ako natutunan!! May life be always sweet and less of those bitter encounters for you :D see you around po! ( may paper pa nga pala pa haha) Godbless! Peaceeee :D

Enoch, M., Harris, C. and and Goldman. D. (2001). Does a reduced sensitivity to bitter taste increase the risk of becoming nicotine addicted?Addictive behaviors 26; 399-404

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