Food structure, oral processing and sensory perception (Smooth Bite)
The ”Smooth Bite for All” project focused on oral mechanisms involved in sensory perception and food intake regulation in relation to food structure. Factors which contribute to dynamic sensory perception and food intake regulation were established by determining relationships between food properties, oral behaviour and consumer characteristics. The SBfA project contributed to a more comprehensive understanding of how transformations of structural heterogeneities during oral processing provide signals for sensory perception and liking; and how a variety of food structure and texture modifications can be used to steer oral processing behaviour and regulate food intake. The SBfA project demonstrated how oral behaviour can determine bolus properties and consequently explain inter-individual differences in dynamic sensory perception consumers. The SBfA project demonstrated how desired texture and taste sensations can be enhanced by modifications of the food structure (texture contrast). The fundamental knowledge generated by the project helped food industry to develop healthier products. The SBfA project provided guidelines for food industry to stratify and customize product formulations.
The aim of the project was to determine the influence of structural and textural food properties and expectations of foods on bolus properties, oral processing behaviour, dynamic sensory perception and liking in consumer groups varying in age, ethnicity and eating capability.
Increasing concerns regarding overweight and obesity require a better understanding of factors contributing to energy intake. It is of great interest to quantify the extent to which the modulation of food properties such as its texture can be used to steer oral processing behaviour in order to regulate the amount and energy of food consumed. The SBfA project developed relationships between rheological, mechanical, tribological and texture properties of foods and energy intake.