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The Science Behind Flavor Profiles

Picture this: It’s a Friday night and you’re cooking for your lover. The skillet is steaming and it smells fantastic. You simmer onions with garlic and olive oil and a dash of salt. Or maybe you’re prepping for stir fry. Soy sauce and ginger sit patiently on the counter waiting to be added to brown rice. Dessert? Mexican hot chocolate complimented by a dash of chili powder. 

Some flavors go together undeniably well. Listed above is just a few classic pairings. But what is it that makes some ingredients together such a sensory hit? Is it biology? Culture? What makes our senses say “yes” to certain flavor profiles?

We’re going to dive into some of the science behind complimentary flavor profiles and discuss why some of these phenomenal flavor pairings are also effective when incorporated with CBD products like CBD infused gummies and CBD drops.

The Science of Flavor

According to Eater’s “Brief (And Biased) History of Flavor,” the centuries-long ability of humans to pair great ingredients together is both cultural and biological. For instance, Toaist schools of thought indicate that food needs a yin and yang in order to be successful. The yin is considered to be cooling and feminine (think green vegetables and fish). The yang is considered masculine, and is represented by hot, spicy and fatty foods. Together, they harmonize a dish. 

Many also point to humoural theory which is a medieval concept with roots in ancient Greece. Humourism suggests that the world is made of four elements—earth, fire, water and air—that are reflected in human biological fluids—color, phlegm, bile and blood. By working ingredients together in a way that balances the elements, it’s possible to achieve an ideal food temperature and level of moisture. 

In terms of biology, our taste pallets have evolved over time. There are the core flavor profiles—salt, spice, sour and sweet—and then there are more nuanced profiles including bitter and savory. When studying taste, scientists look at the way our taste buds interact with our brains. For example, bitter tastes activate the part of our brain that makes us gag. Sweetness reminds us of sugar, which the brain knows will give us energy. Our love for saltiness has evolved in the span of humankind, since the raw plant-based foods of our gathering years lacked salt. These are all fascinating things to look at when examining the impact biology and culture have on our flavor preferences.

CBD + Flavor Profiles

Keeping the history of flavor and all of its possibilities in mind, you may find that consuming certain CBD products gives you an opportunity to expand your taste profile. CBD infused gummies are notorious for mixing together experimental and complementary flavors. The Social CBD Peach Mango Gummies are meant to be taken every day, and feature the flavor profile of two favorite tropical fruits. If you’re not one to mix and match, stick with a classic like the tried-and-true lemon flavored CBD gummies

CBD drops provide another opportunity to play with your favorite flavors. Vanilla and mint are two famous friends you can find paired in blended drinks, ice cream and even cupcakes. The Social CBD Vanilla Mint Broad-Spectrum CBD Drops are delicious and pair well with your morning coffee or as evening “dessert.” While many users appreciate the unflavored taste of CBD oil drops, others love to experiment with the unique flavors the industry has to offer. 

So if you know what you like, look for it when you’re shopping for your new CBD product. History and science reveal that there are certain flavor profiles humans naturally gravitate toward. And, if you’re one of the oddballs that likes to experiment with new things we recommend taking your experimental side to the CBD arena.