, Volume 2, Issue 1, pp 1-8
Date: 01 Mar 2009

Effect of Pulsed or Continuous Delivery of Salt on Sensory Perception Over Short Time Intervals

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Salt in the human diet is a major risk factor for hypertension and many countries have set targets to reduce salt consumption. Technological solutions are being sought to lower the salt content of processed foods without altering their taste. In this study, the approach was to deliver salt solutions in pulses of different concentrations to determine whether a pulsed delivery profile affected sensory perception of salt. Nine different salt profiles were delivered by a Dynataste device and a trained panel assessed their saltiness using time–intensity and single-score sensory techniques. The profile duration (15 s) was designed to match eating conditions and the effects of intensity and duration of the pulses on sensory perception were investigated. Sensory results from the profiles delivered in either water or in a bouillon base were not statistically different. Maximum perceived salt intensities and the area under the time–intensity curves correlated well with the overall perceived saltiness intensity despite the stimulus being delivered as several pulses. The overall saltiness scores for profiles delivering the same overall amount of sodium were statistically not different from one another suggesting that, in this system, pulsed delivery did not enhance salt perception but the overall amount of salt delivered in each profile did affect sensory perception.