Cracking down the oral processing code
Eating can be a whole sensorial experience. However, the perception of the same food items can be different between individuals. This is due to the way that we breakdown food in our mouth, the so called oral processing.
Although eating is part of our daily routine, it is still far from being fully understood. This is because oral processing depends on the food characteristics (texture, hardness, water content, etc.) and on the characteristic of the individual eating (age, ethnicity, oral capability, etc.) This is a dynamic process that can be observed in the bolus generated during oral processing, where it may be possible to observe specific differences and correlate these with sensory perception.
To be able to personalise the experience and enjoyment of food products, we need to understand the relationship and the impact of food characteristics and inter-individual variations on oral processing and bolus properties. Furthermore, with this knowledge it will be possible to formulate and develop products targeting specific consumer groups, including those in need of specific nutritional and tasty choices, such as elderly and people with decreased eating capabilities.
Therefore, the aim of this study is to investigate the effect of inter-individual variations on oral processing behaviour, bolus properties, and sensory perception of food products differing in physical properties.
Research topics and experimental techniques:
- Instrumental characterization of physical chemical properties of food bolus (Rheology, Particle size analysis, Microscopy, Tribology, Water content, etc.)
- Linking sensory perception to bolus properties during the consumption process (TDS, T-CATA, liking, etc.)
- Characterization of oral processing behaviour of different consumer groups (Video recordings and/or Electromyography)
Thesis or internship what to do?
Are you interested in this topic? Then do not hesitate to contactme or drop by to talk about current opportunities for your thesis!