The relation between saliva flow after different stimulations and the perception of flavor and texture attributes in custard desserts

Physiol Behav. 2003 Jan;78(1):165-9. doi: 10.1016/s0031-9384(02)00957-5.


Salivary flow rates were measured at rest and after three types of stimulation; odor, Parafilm chewing, and citric acid. The highest flow rate was elicited by citric acid followed by Parafilm and odor, while the lowest flow rate was unstimulated. In order to investigate whether and how the amount of saliva a subject produces influences the sensory ratings, the four types of salivary flow rates were correlated with sensory ratings of three different types of vanilla custard dessert. No significant correlation could be found between any of the salivary flow rates and the sensory ratings. A subject with a larger saliva flow rate during eating did not rate the foods differently from a subject with less saliva flow. The same pattern was seen for all types of stimulation. This finding could indicate that subjects are used to their respective amounts of saliva to such a degree that the differences in sensory ratings between subjects cannot be explained by the interindividual difference in saliva flow rate.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Citric Acid / pharmacology
  • Eating / physiology*
  • Eating / psychology*
  • Female
  • Food
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Odorants
  • Paraffin
  • Physical Stimulation
  • Salivation / physiology*
  • Smell / physiology
  • Taste / physiology*


  • Citric Acid
  • Paraffin