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Watch and Learn What Goes Into the Complex Science of Flavor

It's all about the total experience

Why do humans crave the food they crave? Obviously, attributes such as taste and smell play a major part, but why is it that individuals look for certain characteristics in their foods? This video from the Guardian explains how the process of enjoying a tasty bite is much more complex than it may seem.

"All of us — sensory scientists, anaesthetists, chef alike — experience this taste as if it's coming from the mouth, but in fact all the other senses are involved," explains Charles Spence, professor of experimental psychology at Oxford University. "Our brain's just sort of doing it all together and telling us it's there in your mouth."

The video details the ways a noisy restaurant can dampen the sweet flavors of a dessert, how certain sounds can seemingly enhance a food's crunch, and how the name of a dish — even if it's one made-up word — can alter the way a diner perceives its flavors. Watch now to get a free lesson on how the brain interacts with every meal you consume.

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