Does Smell Affect Taste? - Laiba Poovanthodi and Niya Abdulrahman

We will eat different foods while smelling Nutella.
Laiba Poovanthodi Niya Abdulrahman
Grade 5



We believe that smell can affect our taste because our nose is connected to our mouth.



Our nose is connected with our mouth so the smell can change the taste of the food we are eating. When you eat food, your brain takes both of the senses and sometimes can mistaken them and take smell for taste and taste for smell. This usually happens when you are smelling something while you are eating something.  For example if you are eating your favorite food but there is a strong smell of gas or something strong, your food would taste like gas or it would taste like nothing. In this project, I'll be talking about how memory is important, what I have done to prove my hypothesis, how I did an experiment and was my hypothesis right or wrong.



There are Three Variables That Changed


Lemon juice, Hot sauce, Donut and Tomato. 

Age Groups

10, 35 and 40


Sour, Spicy, Sweet and Umami.



We will eat some different foods and say what we can taste (nothing, a little bit, or everything). If we can't taste everything or a lot of the food, then our hypothesis was right. If we can taste everything, then our hypothesis was wrong. 



Smell and taste are very close. The taste buds of the tongue identify taste, and the nerves in the nose identify smell. Both sensations are communicated to the brain, which integrates the information so that flavors can be recognized and appreciated.



Our tongue can only sense five basic flavors (sweet, salty, sour, biter and *umami*). Our sense of smell is much stronger than your sense of taste. If you think you are tasting something,  sometimes when you eat something and you love the taste, your actually smelling it! 

*What is umami?*

Umami, which is also known as monosodium glutamate is one of the core fifth tastes including sweet, sour, bitter, and salty. Umami means “essence of deliciousness” in Japanese, and its taste is usually described as the meaty, beautiful deliciousness that deepens flavor, an example is tomato.





Our hypothesis was right, we were able to affect our taste by smell. But we also learned that with a strong food like hot sauce and plain lemon juice, taste does not get affected by other smells.  



The foods we used for our experiment are: Lemons juice(sour), Hot sauce(spicy), Donut(sweet) and Tomato(umami).

Sources Of Error


If the smell isn't strong enough, the experiment will not work because we can't smell anything for our food to taste like something else or nothing so we won't know if our hypothesis is right or wrong.

If the person likes the food and does not mind the smell, the experiment will not work.



We found some information on google and the idea for "Does smell affect taste"  project on pintrest

Our mom, sister and partner helped us do this project.

Links We Used For Research

 What is umami? 5 facts about umami | Everything about ...

 This link told us what umami is and some facts about it.  

 How does the way food looks or its smell influence taste ...

  This link told us how food is affected by smell.

 Does Smell Affect Taste? | Ask A Biologist

 This link told us that when we eat a food, most of the time we are smelling the taste and some examples(Think about when you have a stuffed-up nose during a head cold – food doesn’t quite taste the same, right? this is one of the examples).



- We would like to thank our science teacher to find a good project. -

- We would like to thank our parents and siblings for their support and help to finish the project. -

 - We would like to thank each other for successful teamwork. -