Taste Changes and Aging

April 25, 2019

Are there any foods that you used to dislike but now you can’t get enough of? Isn’t it interesting how our taste buds adapt as we grow up? This doesn’t just happen from infancy to adulthood, but also as we continue to age and approach our senior years. The taste of food can change due to fewer and/or damaged taste buds that can result in a dampened flavour of food. Often times this can lead to increased salt intake to enhance the flavour, which can have a negative impact on blood pressure and risk of stroke, heart disease and kidney disease. Here are a few tips to ensure an enjoyable meal even if it doesn’t taste like it used to.

1. Add flavour without the extra sodium
- Herbs and spices (ex. basil, oregano, cilantro, dill, mint, rosemary, curry etc.)
- Salsa
- Dips (ex. hummus, tzatziki)
- Sauces (ex. tahini, homemade BBQ sauce or garlic sauce, sriracha or lemon juice)

2. Boost the texture of food to give it better mouth appeal. For example, add some nuts/seeds to oatmeal, mix some berries into yogurt, try a variety of vegetables at dinner.

3. Amp up the colour to satisfy your senses. The look of food can have a large impact on how much we enjoy it. Adding colour to your dish is likely to increase the satisfaction of the meal.

It’s natural for our taste preferences to change as we age but there are many options to help maintain the flavours of your favourite foods.



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