Washington, Dec 17 (ANI): Girls have a far superior sense of taste than boys, according to a new research.
The study, conducted by Danish Science Communication, food scientists from The Faculty of Life Sciences (LIFE) at University of Copenhagen involved 8,900 Danish schoolchildren.
The study also found that every third child of school age prefers soft drinks, which are not sweet. Also, children and young people love fish and do not think of themselves as being fussy eaters
The findings revealed that girls have a better sense of taste than boys. Boys have a sweeter tooth than girls. Teenagers taste differently. And finally, schoolchildren in northern Denmark have the best taste buds.
The study, touted as the world's largest so far, was the first research on the ability of children and young people to taste and what they like.
For the study, all the participating groups of children were sent a complete kit of taster samples and very detailed instructions, and then conducted the experiment as part of their natural science classes.
The various tests were designed to quantify the ability of children and young people to discover and recognise sweet and sour tastes at varying intensities, to establish which sourness or sweetness they prefer, how many taste buds they have and, finally, the children answered a number of questions on their eating habits and fussiness over food.
One of the many findings shows that girls are generally better at recognising tastes than boys. They are better at recognising all concentrations of both sweet and sour tastes. And also it is a known fact that women generally have a finer sense of taste than men.
"We also asked the pupils to count 'taste buds' or organs of taste on the tongue. However, the experiment showed that boys and girls have largely the same number of taste buds. So it would appear that what makes the difference is the way in which boys and girls process taste impressions," said Michael Bom Frost, Associate Professor at the Department of Food Science at LIFE.
The figures revealed that boys need an average of approximately 10 per cent more sourness and approximately 20 per cent more sweetness to recognise the taste.
Interestingly, girls generally prefer flavours, which are not too strong. Boys, on the other hand, tend to like the more extreme flavours.
Also, the study found that boys also have a sweeter tooth than girls, as the majority of boys preferred the super sweet soft drink variety. And most boys also gave top marks to the sourest samples.
According to Bodil Allesen-Holm, MSc in Food Science and Technology, who is the scientific head of the project, the results provide food for thought for both the food industry, as well as for parents.
"It is quite clear that children and young people are very good tasters, and that there are bigger variations between them than most people would expect," he said.
He added: There is, for example, a marked difference between boys and girls, and the ability of children to recognise tastes changes with age.
So one could easily develop more varied food products and snacks for children and young people. For example, it is quite clear that children do not necessarily prefer sweet things. According to the findings, healthy snacks could easily be developed for boys with slightly extreme and sour flavours." (ANI)