Effect of Acute Stress on Taste Perception: In Relation with Baseline Anxiety Level and Body Weight

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Ileri-Gurel E., PEHLİVANOĞLU B., Dogan M.

CHEMICAL SENSES, vol.38, no.1, pp.27-34, 2013 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 38 Issue: 1
  • Publication Date: 2013
  • Doi Number: 10.1093/chemse/bjs075
  • Journal Name: CHEMICAL SENSES
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.27-34
  • Keywords: acute stress, anxiety, body weight, glucose threshold, taste perception, salt threshold, DIETARY RESTRAINT, MASS INDEX, SWEET, SENSITIVITY, EXPRESSION, CORTISOL, WOMEN, 6-N-PROPYLTHIOURACIL, HYPOTHALAMUS, THRESHOLDS
  • Hacettepe University Affiliated: Yes


We aimed to determine the effect of acute stress on taste perception and its modulation in relation to body weight and baseline anxiety in this study. The anxiety of the participants, randomly allocated to stress (n 35) or control (n 16) groups, was assessed by State Trait Anxiety Inventory. Stroop color-word interference and cold pressor tests were applied as stress protocol. Glucose and salt taste detection thresholds were evaluated before and after the stress protocol in the stress group and corresponding times in the control group. Stress protocol increased heart rate and blood pressure as an indicator of stress system activation. Following stress glucose and salt thresholds decreased in the stress group, unchanged in the control group. Prestress salt thresholds were positively and decrements in salt thresholds were negatively correlated with trait anxiety scores of participants. The state anxiety levels of stress group positively correlated with the decrease in glucose thresholds. Waist-to-hip ratio was negatively correlated with prestress salt thresholds of the subjects. Our results revealed that thresholds for sweet and salty tastes are modulated during stressful conditions. Our data also demonstrated a relationship between taste perception and baseline anxiety levels of healthy individuals, which may be important to understand the appetite alterations in individuals under stressful conditions.