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17 September 2014
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Test your tastebuds

Conduct a simple scientific experiment to find out whether you have a supertaster tongue or not. All you need is:

  • Food colouring
  • Cotton buds
  • Reinforcement rings for hole-punched paper
  • Magnifying glass
Tongues of different taster types

This is what you need to do:

  1. Using a cotton bud, swab some food colouring on to the tip of your tongue
  2. Place a reinforcement ring on your tongue
  3. Count the pink dots within the reinforcement ring. This may be easier with a magnifying glass

The pink dots are your fungiform papillae. They don't take up the food colouring. These papillae are the tiny bumps on your tongue that house your taste buds. The more papillae you have, the more taste buds you have and the more sensitive to taste you are. On average, non-tasters have fewer than 15 papillae in that area, while supertasters have over 30.

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