This study investigated differences in food perception sensitivity between genders in a group of 274 subjects (187 females, 87 males). Sensitivity to taste, odor, texture, astringency and oral irritation were assessed using tests devel- oped during the HealthSense project. The impact of gender on the different sensitivity types was determined using a Student t-test. A significant gender effect was observed on the following sensitivity types: bitter identification ability (P = 0.04), bitter, sour and sweet intensity assessment (P = 0.001, P = 0.01 and P = 0.03, respectively), odor identification ability (P < 0.001), chewing ability (P = 0.02) and oral stereognosis (P = 0.02). Females obtained higher scores than males for all sensitivity types except for the chewing ability (P < 0.05 for both the ability to chew 10 and 20 strokes). No gender effect was observed for the ability to perceive astringency and oral irritation.
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