About the 5 flavors & their connection to feelings of hunger

Basically it works like this. There are 5 flavors among food & when all are present in a meal,your brain gets the signal that everything is A-OK and it is satisfied (this can help in observing another healthy eating guidline, to stop eating when you feel 2/3 full).

Even if only 2-3 are represented this is a step in the right direction and can reduce feelings of still being hungry in spite of eating sufficient calories.

The flavors are Sweet, Salty, Savory (spicy), Sour, & Bitter.

Representation does not require and entire dish with one of these predominate flavors. For example, a simple stir fry of brocoli & beef sesoned with garlic & soy sauce has Bitter, the brocoli, Sweet, the beef, Savory, the garlic, and Salty, the soy sauce.

A glass of water (no ice) with lemon in it would add Sour to the meal & now you have a grand slam!

When a meal that is dominated by one or two flavors, say pasta with tomato sauce, the brain keeps thinking something is missing, but may not be sure what. Often people will just have another helping of the same thing & get the crazy “i’m stuffed, but I still want something more” sensation (remember too, that it takes 20 minutes for your brain to receive the signal from your stomach that enough food has been eaten).

Repersenting all 5 flavors does not have to mean eating a bigger quanitity of food. It means being aware of what is on the plate in front of you and making adjustments to seasonings, or substituting an additional flavor for a part of one already present. In our pasta example, topping the dish with a good romano cheese can add a salty element. Reducing the serving size of the pasta, and adding in a green vegetable, especially a bitter one like escarole or broccoli, will make a huge difference.


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