Toronto, ON (PR) June 03, 2012
According to a study conducted at the New York Obesity Research Center, and published in the Journal of Food Science (March 2012), the genes CD36 and TAS2R38 play an important role in how people taste and enjoy fat and junk food.
The researchers examined the 2 genes which determine taste receptors, in 300 African American adults. The researchers focused only on one ethnic group in order to limit genetic variations which could increase the difficulty in detecting associations with the genes of interest. The study first examined the gene CD36, which is the gene that is thought to be responsible for the perception and detection of fats in the mouth.
The researchers found that 21 percent of the participants had a specific genetic variation in the CD36 gene that resulted in a greater preference for added fats and oils, such as those found in cooking oils and salad dressings.
Dr. Victor Marchione, M.D., Spokesperson for Bel Marra Health says the results of this study suggest that it may be harder for certain individuals to lose weight because they have genetic variations resulting in fewer taste buds and consequently, they consume higher fat foods such as junk foods, to compensate for the perceived lack of flavor.
Jim Chiang, CEO of Bel Marra Health added to Dr. Marchiones comments saying it is a bit of a chicken and egg situation because some researchers speculate that consuming a chronic high fat diet results in gene mutation and a reduced ability to perceive and experience satisfaction from fats in foods, as opposed to the other way around.”
As a result of this research, there is some optimism that a greater understanding of how these genes affect the ability to taste and enjoy dietary fat, may lead to the development of a weight loss mechanism that helps people who are overweight due to an inability to resist consuming excess dietary fat.
(SOURCE: Journal of Food Science. TAS2R38 and CD36 may play a role in some people’s ability to taste and enjoy dietary fat, March 2012)