Scientists Engineer Sweet-Tasting Spoons To Enhance Sensory Perception
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Research has already shown that the weight, color and shape of utensils can change our perception of a food's taste, including its sweetness, saltiness, and fattiness. In an attempt to produce the sensations of sugar without the calories, a team of scientists from Cornell and New York University has designed a a spoon with several bumps on its underside, creating a greater surface area to press against the tongue. Dubbed "Sugarware," the bumpy spoon is covered with ligands, molecules that bind with taste receptor proteins on the tongue, triggering a cascade of nerve signals that cause the brain to register a sensation of sweetness. A promising development for diabetics.
German Chemist Makes Near-Instant Cold Brew With Laser Beams
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Compared to hot brewed coffee, cold brew is less acidic, less bitter, and higher in caffeine, all thanks to the lower water temperature and longer brewing time. We're talking 12-36 hours. To get the same smooth taste in less time, German scientist Anna Rosa Ziefuss uses laser beams, stirring, and a finer grind of coffee, all of which increase the contact area of the coffee powder with water. Boom! Cold-brewed coffee in just 3 minutes. Chromatography and spectrometry data showed no significant difference between traditional cold-brew and Ziefuss's faster method. Get ready for Laser Brew coming to a coffee shop near you.
Neuroscientist Explains Why Spicy Food Makes You Sweat
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Our reactions to spicy food are caused by chemesthesis, "a chemical sense that perceives spiciness in general," says Frederica Genovese, a neuroscientist at the Monell Chemical Senses Center in Philadelphia. Capsaicin, the chemical in hot chile peppers that's responsible for those reactions, binds to receptors on the tongue which send signals to your brain saying you’ve encountered something burning. Even though the body is not harmed, it responds by sweating, sneezing, coughing and/or crying. “Sweating is literally to wash out whatever got in contact with your mouth, your skin, and everything else,” says Genovese. Since the neurons perceive an increase in temperature, sweating is also an attempt to cool the body down. Genovese says you can train your body to temper these reactions. How? By eating spicy food more often. Time to gorge on those spicy wings.
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Chemist Explains Science Behind BBQ Smoke And Char
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Grilling is a simple way cook, right? Actually, there's a lot going on under the hood. Chemistry professor Kristine Nolin explains how cooking with open flame – whether gas, charcoal, or wood – amplifies the "Maillard reaction" and "caramelization," two chemical processes that transform proteins and sugars on the surface of meat, vegetables, and/or fruits, making them taste more meaty, savory, toasty, and/or caramel-like. Nolin also reveals how dry heat creates delectable char and how smoke "seasons" food with alluring aromas. No wonder barbecue tastes so good.
2022 World Food Prize Awarded To NASA Climate Scientist
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Dr. Cynthia Rosenzweig has been named the 2022 World Food Prize Laureate for her pioneering work in modeling the impact of climate change on worldwide food production. Rosenzweig founded the Agricultural Model Intercomparison and Improvement Project (AgMIP), a globally integrated transdisciplinary network of climate and food system modelers. AgMIP has directly helped lawmakers in more than 90 countries enhance their food systems' resilience to climate change. Rosenzweig will receive the $250,000 prize officially in an October ceremony.