Why I Don’t Like Goat Cheese.

3 May

Are any of you familiar with the gustatory system?  Some of you may already know what it is (ahem, The Savvy Sister, maybe??  :)  )  I didn’t know, so I went snooping.  Apparently, it’s the system that receives taste from five different receptors: salty, sweet, bitter, sour, and umami (means savory or meaty in Japanese).  Hmmm….interesting.

photo source

I recently read an article by Cathryn Delude in Massachusetts General Hospital’s Proto Magazine that explained about how we are genetically wired to enjoy certain tastes and dislike others.  In the article, Charles Zucker, a neuroscientist at Columbia University was quoted as saying,

“Taste is greatly affected by the activity of our receptors.  And because receptors vary from person to person, so does the way we experience taste.”

So our decisions about taste started when we were just little people, possibly even before we were born.  And basically, what this means is what we like to eat and don’t like to eat can have a huge impact on our overall health – and it is not all be attributed to the belief that we are merely picky eaters.

I can definitely see how genetics could play a role in the tastes that we enjoy.  I have two sisters.  None of us like coffee…at all.  Can’t stand it.  It’s much too bitter and leaves a horrible aftertaste in your mouth.  Yet, our parents both drink it daily.  Black, no cream or sugar.  Blech!  :)

I have a strong affinity for all things sweet (but maybe that’s more of an addiction based on years of consumption rather than a genetic predisposition :) ).  I much prefer sweet to savory.

I can also do without meat.  I’ll eat it, and some of it I like, but if I had to give it up today, I could.  {Gasp!}  When I was a kid, I hated meat so much that I used to pretend like I was eating it, stick a bunch of it in the side of my mouth, and then ask to be excused so I could go spit it out in the bathroom!  Honest, I did.  Especially if we were having cubed steak.  Yuck!

I hate goat cheese, but I don’t mind feta.  My friend, Lou, likes them both.  I know they’re very similar, but I can’t stand the smell or taste of goat cheese.  I have another friend, Sheila, who doesn’t like cheese of any kind.  That’s hard for me to imagine because I love a lot of cheeses (except goat and brie), but she doesn’t want any cheese anywhere near her food.

My husband hates tomatoes.  Can’t stand them.  For years, I’ve never understood this.  I love a fresh tomato and mozzarella sandwich.  Tomatoes are just basic food!  Everyone likes tomatoes, right?  Wrong.  And after reading this article, I’m beginning to understand that it’s not just a choice he’s making to like or dislike tomatoes, he’s wired that way.

We are all wired differently when it comes to the foods we like and don’t like.  This predisposition can have a huge impact on our overall health if we are not able to use willpower to overcome our dislikes.  Scientists believe that we will someday be able to modify or retrain these receptors to make once distasteful foods seem more palatable.  For those of us who tend to favor sweets and breads over fruits and veggies, this could be very good news.

If you’d like to read the full article from Proto Magazine, you can find it here.

Have a great day!!
♥ Rachel


5 Responses to “Why I Don’t Like Goat Cheese.”

  1. Susan May 3, 2012 at 1:32 pm #

    Haha I love cheese, my Grandpa in England always had cheese around especially Wensleydale and Cheshire. Turnips are the thing I dislike. Don’t really know why because I love carrots. Interesting blog article, thanks!

    • rachturner May 6, 2012 at 7:22 pm #

      Susan – I’ve never heard of Wensleydale or Cheshire cheese. I wonder if it’s even available here in the US? Hmm…. Oh, man, turnips are not on my list, either! :)

  2. jksmith032460 May 3, 2012 at 7:34 pm #

    You didn’t go spit it out – you would keep that piece of nasty meet in you cheek like a squirrel forever! Ask Mom and Dad. I do agree with you I could easily give up meat. Dad could too – he just loves vegetables. I think it is a “Christopher” gene that makes us all like sweets. I do not like goat cheese either – never have. It is interesting because Bailey and I both don’t care for chocolate and that is a very rare thing. Can’t stand chocolate cake or chocolate ice cream – yuck.


    • rachturner May 6, 2012 at 7:21 pm #

      Like a squirrel??? LOL!!! I don’t remember it quite that way, but you were older than me so I’ll trust your memory.

      • jksmith032460 May 6, 2012 at 8:11 pm #

        Ask Kathy, Mom or Dad and they will start laughing and tell you the same thing!


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