Wednesday, December 8, 2010

When Diabetic Dessert Recipes Just Don't Work

Do you ever hear the siren song of a dessert practically singing to you, "Eat me, eat me," especially after dinner? Japanese scientists have discovered that sensitivity to sweet tastes ebbs and flows throughout every 24-hour period, but is greatest just before midnight.

This means that sweets taste sweeter between 8 p.m. (2000) and midnight. Your ability to taste sweets is lowest about 8 a.m. (0800). This is also true to the flavoring ingredient MSG (monosodium glutamate). You have keener ability to taste MSG in foods in the evening than in the morning.

On the other hand, salty foods taste saltier and citrus tastes citrus-ier early in the morning. The ability to detect flavors in these foods is greater in the morning than at night. This is part of the reason people tend to eat bacon and drink orange juice at breakfast, rather than at dinner.

If you find that sweet desserts after dinner simply taste too good to resist, the answer might be something you would never expect: Get more sleep at night. Not only will you be asleep when your cravings for sweet foods peak about midnight, your body will have a greater chance to process the hormone leptin that controls your appetite. When diabetic dessert recipes just don't work, try getting more rest.

Selected Reference:

Nakamura Y, Sanematsu K, Ohta R, Shirosaki S, Koyano K, Nonaka K, Shigemura N, Ninomiya Y.
Diurnal Variation of Human Sweet Taste Recognition Thresholds Is Correlated With Plasma Leptin Levels. Diabetes. 2008 Oct;57(10):2661-5. Epub 2008 Jul 15.

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