While high-fat foods taste good to most of us, some people don’t enjoy the flavor of rich, fatty food at all. New research appearing in this month’s issue of the Journal of Food Science confirms that two distinct genes might have very specific functions when it comes to enjoying dietary fat. By understanding the part that these two genes play, researchers may be able to assist those who have difficulty managing the amount of fat they consume.
Investigators established the fat preference of more than 300 adults who possessed the CD36 “fat receptor “gene. They found that 21 percent of these study participants had a higher preference for added fats like salad dressings and oils.
The researchers also investigated another gene — the TAS2R38 gene — which controls bitter taste. About 70 percent of the population are “tasters” of these compounds, while the rest of the population are “nontasters.” Results of this research imply that nontasters of these compounds have a difficult time detecting dietary fat in foods and may consume higher-fat foods to compensate.
While the reason for weight gain has always been multifactorial, health professionals continue to examine the role that genotypes may play in weight management.