Inverse: Inside the Scientific Quest to Understand Brussels Sprouts

Eating is a multi-sensory experience. Before food gets near your mouth, you see it, smell it, and maybe even hear it as you move it around a plate or feel its texture between your fingertips. You taste it when it hits your tongue, listen to it as you chew, and feel it as you swallow.

This concert of the senses helps you decide whether you enjoy eating the food — and if you want to eat more. Non-sensory factors may play a role in your tastes, too, like the food your mother ate while pregnant with you, the meals you ate as a child, and the culinary culture you grow up with and live in, the abundance of certain foodstuffs compared to others. Maybe you’re allergic to certain foods, like peanuts or kiwis.

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