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Aquired Tastes

I've been thinking about sensory neurons as well as the way we sense different inputs such as sound and color through different pathways. I also have been wondering about the concept of aquiring tastes. Most of us have probably aquired a taste for something in our lives. A couple of examples might be coffee or wine. When I was a child I hated the taste of coffee but I enjoy it now because I've "aquired" a taste for it. How do we aquire tastes? Maybe there is a change in the signal pathway through our neurons. When I did not like the taste of coffee the activated signal pathway might have been different than the one I experience now. This could be due to the activation of new sensory neurons on the tongue or maybe the enhancement or deterioration of taste sensory neurons over time. I would be curious to learn exactly how one persons neurons differ from a time when they do not like the taste of something to a time when they do like it. Is the change a gradual one or does it occur very quickly before we can realize that it happened. What might the physical or chemical changes be in sensory neurons that cause the change of displeasure to pleasure?

On a somewhat related note it might be interesting to see the differences between the signal pathways in sensory neurons in a person who enjoys the taste of one thing and those in someone who does not enjoy that thing.


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