Nutrition Experts Assess Promising Role of Umami Taste in Battle Against Obesity and Malnutrition

DUBLIN, Oct. 9, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Nutrition professionals around the world will convene in Dublin this month to discuss the latest strategies to address the obesity epidemic. One symposium will be examining the role of umami (one of the five basic tastes, known as the "savory" taste, which comes from glutamate) in light of recent research suggesting that umami not only makes food more appetizing but also increases the feeling of fullness, reducing the desire to overeat.

Recent scientific studies have shown that monosodium glutamate (MSG or E621), a sodium salt of glutamate described as 'umami seasoning', when added to an appetizer or soup prior to a meal can decrease appetite [] and food intake. The results identify new ways to facilitate healthy eating without decreasing satisfaction with a meal, and reduce food intake.

The symposium is part of the 13(th) European Nutrition Conference, known as FENS 2019, organized by the Federation of European Nutrition Societies [] October 15-18 in Dublin, Ireland. FENS 2019 will explore perspectives on "malnutrition in an obese world" among 2,500 delegates attending.

Participants at the symposium will learn about the importance of umami taste as it affects food preference, as well as umami's role in promoting healthy and balanced diets.

One session, led by Dr. Gabriella Morini, an assistant professor at the University of Gastronomic Sciences in Pollenzo, Italy, will explore how umami food components (such as fermented sauces, cured meats, cheeses) are able to improve the overall palatability of food and can influence appetite and satiety.

Dr. Daniel Tomé, who specializes in nutritional physiology and eating behaviour at INRA/AgroParisTech (Paris), will focus on the important role of glutamate, an amino acid which is produced in the human body for many essential functions including metabolism of major nutrients, in terms of taste preference for protein-rich foods.

Dr. Ciarán Forde, a principal investigator at the Clinical Nutrition Research Center in Singapore, will discuss how perceptual responses to a food's taste, texture and mouthfeel properties can be used to influence eating behaviour and energy intake.

Dr. Ana San Gabriel, secretariat of the International Glutamate Information Service [], the non-profit organization sponsoring the symposium, notes, "Understanding how sensory properties affect healthier food choices and energy intakes will support the development of behavioural and dietary strategies for better management of chronic conditions such as obesity."

CONTACT: Ana San Gabriel, DVM, MS, International Glutamate Information Service,

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