Why Do We Like The Taste Of Protein? | Wired Science | Wired.com

Why Do We Like The Taste Of Protein? | Wired Science | Wired.com.

For a long time, the mechanisms of taste seemed relatively straightforward. For one thing, it’s been all about the tongue, that exposed sensory muscle lying limp in our mouth. Ever since Democritus hypothesized in the fourth century B.C. that the sensation of taste was an effect of the shape of food particles, the tongue has been seen as a simple sensory organ.  Sweet things, according to Democritus, were “round and large in their atoms,” while “the astringently sour is that which is large in its atoms but rough, angular and not spherical.”  Saltiness was caused by isosceles atoms, while bitterness was “spherical, smooth, scalence and small.” Plato believed Democritus, and wrote in Timaeus that differences in taste were caused by atoms on the tongue entering the small veins that traveled to the heart. Aristotle, in turn, believed Plato. In De Anima, the four primary tastes Aristotle described were the already classic sweet, sour, salty, and bitter…

 

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