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The effect of microgravity and space flight on the chemical senses

The effect of microgravity and space flight on the chemical senses

Journal of food science 67(2): 468-478

The effect of space flight and microgravity on the chemical senses is reviewed. Skylab-4 and Soyuz 30-31 studies revealed changes in taste thresholds while no effect was found in a Canadian investigation (41-G) and conflicting results were obtained on another Soyuz mission. Two simulated microgravity studies found no effect on taste or smell sensitivity; while 5 other studies found an effect. Microgravity induces physiological changes including an upward shift of body fluids toward the head, which may lead to an attenuation of the olfactory component in the flavor of foods. Chemosensory changes may also relate to space sickness, Shuttle atmosphere, stress, radiation, and psychological factors.

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Accession: 003968760

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 12085931

DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2621.2002.tb10622.x

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