Why do we taste differ if we have a stuffy nose?

The sense of taste and the sense of smell are very closely linked. This is why you may notice how a loss of one generally leads to the loss of the other. The sense of smell is actually responsible for approximately eighty percent of what we taste. In the absence of a sense of smell, taste gets limited to just 5 sensations; bitter, sour, salty, sweet and savory. It is due to this reason you will discover that when you are inflicted with a cold, anything that you eat or drink tends to taste bland or tasteless. The millions of tiny taste buds present on our tongue are responsible for recognizing taste, while the nerves located in our noses recognize smell. Now, when you eat something, both these sensations are transmitted to our brain, which then processes the information or signals, so that the flavors can be both recognized and appreciated.

Here are a few remedies that can help in savoring food a little more when you are down with a cold or stuffy nose. As the sense of smell has been compromised due to a blocked or stuffy nose, the remedy then would lie in clearing out this stuffiness. Onions are great for clearing a stuffy nose. Slice one onion and inhale the pungent smell that is let out while doing so. This pungent odor acts as a very powerful decongestant, which will help in clearing a stuffy nose. Once the mucus has drained and the nasal passages are clear, you can proceed to eat your meal.

Piping hot ginger tea will also help in clearing a stuffy nose while also treating a cold. Boil 2 cups of water and add a teaspoon of finely chopped ginger to it. Now let the two steep for 5-10 minutes on a slow fire, after which keep it aside to cool. Strain the hot tea into a cup and add a spoonful of honey to enhance its taste. This remedy should help in clearing the nasal passages very effectively. Steam inhalation just before your meals will also help. Boil 500 ml of water. Once it starts emanating steam, place your head over the container, so that the hot steam is directed into your face. Inhale the hot vapor for a few minutes, till you begin to feel the nasal passages clearing. You could also add a few drops of eucalyptus oil to the hot water; this will be an added advantage.

answered by M W

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