Supertaster: What Dave won’t eat
February 21, 2012 § 8 Comments
Dave is the king of saying that he “can’t” eat something…not “won’t,” but CAN’T. It’s almost as if he is saying that he has no control over it, and his body refuses entry of the indicated food item. Dave’s in that very small group of people known as supertasters (yes, it’s a real actual way of being). It has to do with something strange and different with his tastebuds. Whatever it is…supertasters find almost everything that the rest of us love, to be bitter-tasting and inedible. Brussels sprouts…inedible. Cooked onion…bitter. Orange juice…bitter. It’s like the guy has an entire tongue made up of taste buds that only taste bitter. It’s like his tongue is that teacher in high school who hated you no matter what. It’s not that supertasters don’t like a particular food, it’s that the taste of a particular food is more intense that it is for other people, so supertasters desire less of it. Unfortunately, many of the foods that are very healthy are “too intense” for supertasters, and so they really prefer not to consume them.
Here’s the list of stuff Dave says is not on his eating plan: acorn squash, alcoholic beverages, alfalfa sprouts, asparagus, barley, bean sprouts, bok choy, brussels sprouts, cabbage, carbonated beverages, chocolate, cilantro, citrus, cloves, coffee, collard greens, couscous, dill, ginger, grapefruit, green tea, green vegetables, kale, lemon, liver, mint, molasses, mustard greens, olive oil, olives, paprika, parsley, pickles, sauerkraut, soy, spinach, sweet potatoes, tabouli, vinegar, wine.
Dave says that these foods are annoying, and eating them is like chewing on tinfoil.
Supertasters are “lucky” because they have more tastebuds that the rest of the population.
Cooking around our house is…interesting. When Dave cooks, we eat either Dave’s sandwiches, burritos, or sushi….not because that’s all he likes but because he knows that burritos and sushi are error-free; we both like them and there’s a lot of wiggle-room for error. If I cook…I’m going crazy. I try to incorporate a lot of vegetables and healthy organic options into our meals, and Dave’s just not into that. Sure, he loves the idea of “healthy options,” but when it shows up on his plate, he’s not as excited. Just try cooking with a supertaster in your house.
Many of our recipes use some of the supertaster “banned” ingredients. Lemon, for instance, is in a lot of our favorite foods. If I put lemon into the dish while Dave’s watching, he will say that it tastes terrible. If I leave it out, he’ll say that it’s “missing something.” The fact is that while his preferences are based on real likes and dislikes, it’s possible to “hide” a flavor (like lemon) inside of something else. Lemon does seem to brighten a dish, but too much lemon can destroy a dish as well, especially for a supertaster. We also cook with wine, and use olive oil almost exclusively. The trick is knowing how much to use, and being careful.
Maybe you have a supertaster in your house. If so, please share. Tell the rest of us your strategies for coping.