'Supertasters' Have a Love-Hate Relationship With Food: Are You One of Them?

grapefruitDo you think you have exceptional taste buds? Believe your palate is more sensitive, and therefore more sophisticated, than the next person's? Hate beer? Well, you just might be one of the 15 percent of Americans who are "supertasters."

Here's how to tell if you're one of the elite few:

If you don't like grapefruit, black coffee, green vegetables, creamy and/or fatty foods like heavy salad dressings, beer, or liquor, but enjoy carrots, salty snacks, low-fat milk, apples, soy sauce, and sweet cocktails, you might be a supertaster.

Supertasters generally have more fungiform papillae on their tongue than the average person ... mushroom-shaped projectiles that contain taste buds ... and have heightened senses of joy and displeasure when it comes to eating. And despite what you may assume, they're generally leaner than the rest of the population -- their aversion to fatty foods is likely the cause.

Here's the thing. When I first saw the headline about supertasters, I instantly wanted to be one. Not only is it something cool to brag about to your cat on a Friday night when you're devouring truffle mac 'n' cheese alone, it also sounds wonderfully advantageous.

After reading the list of dislikes, though, I realized that not only was I not a supertaster (their list of hates is my lists of loves -- I start almost every day with grapefruit and beer black coffee), but I'm happy about it, as well.

I'm pretty OK with my average amount of fungiform papillae, thank you very much. Keep the bitter foods coming! What a shame to not be able to enjoy some of the world's most delicious foods. Now, pass me the scotch and the wings dipped in blue cheese dressing, por favor.

Are you a supertaster?


Photo via muffet/Flickr



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insei... inseineangel

I'm one, unfortunately, and I must be a weird one, because I'm a pretty hefty chick, lol.

I can't do creamy foods like yogurt and the like, or oily foods. I taste spicy and sour things much, much more strongly than other people. I can't do bitter things (I'm a coffe drinker, but if it's black, I can't do it). I also have big issues with the TEXTURE of foods. Peppers, beans, and many other things (though I still make myself eat them, because fruits and veggies are good for you!)

I'm trying to force myself past it, but from what a doctor told me in the past, I can't change how my taste buds work. 

amiec... amiecanflie

I am one also. Except my weakness is sweets, and if I taste something I don't like I vomit. FUN! 

tuffy... tuffymama

Supertaster here, and I used to get paid for it, too. I can taste motor oil in a wine that everyone else can't get enough of, the dye and sizing in clothes in stores force me to shop online and open my packages in the laundry room. Mayonnaise literally makes me vomit. Turning down foods or drinks in social situations has made people think I was either a snob or on a diet. I completely offended my DH's aunt because her casserole made me gag. Cough medicine texture and taste, ugh.. I've known one other ST IRL, and that poor girl could hardly stand to eat anything. Broccoli is super bitter to me, but I love it. A lot of normal foods to everyone else are really astringent or bitter to me, but I like them. I even craved burnt tastes in my first pregnancy, when otherwise, just smelling burnt food makes me retch and heave a bit. Detergent smell makes me nauseated. Perfume? Forget about it. There are about four manufactured fragrances I can wear. I sometimes have one blended by a girl who used to live here in town, and I wear EOs in carrier oils, rubbed on, or in potato vodka, sprayed on. It's been a lifelong PITA, but in my industry, it is an easy way to impress people. And I almost always get free bottles from visiting winemakers and liquor reps who like to challenge my palate. Cool, huh?

insei... inseineangel

Lol, @tuffymama, people always thought I was nuts when I said broccoli was bitter! They don't taste it. Still love it, though.

lalab... lalaboosh

Well this explains a, lot....

nonmember avatar Lexi jordan

I'm a super taster as well. My problem is with dark green veggies, they are either really bitter or taste chemically to me ( I've been told its the high levels of chlorophyll.)People think I am just very picky with vegetables and my MIL is often offended because of this haha. Like Tuffymama I can't handle burnt things either. If a burger, or even toast, is the tiniest bit burnt I will immediately taste it.

kaffe... kaffedrikke

Me too I cannot stand most of thefoods listed cream sauces are theworst

dekumama dekumama

I was going to add that broccoli is another big one for super tasters, but you guys beat me to it. I don't know if I am one, but it sounds likely. I hate soy sauce though, and cucumbers taste perfumey to me.

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