6.2 The Six
Tastes in Ayurveda
6.2.1 Taste and Western Society
Taste (and its therapeutic actions) is probably one of the most difficult and foreign concepts for us Westerners to understand. Unfortunately, as a culture we have lost much of our sense of taste due to the overuse of sugar and salt. This is also aided by a lack of the bitter taste which restores the ability to taste and enhances the other tastes. Bitter is the taste most often forgotten, and sugar - well, it to the point of abuse. Recent studies show that sugar is an immune suppressant. Thirty minutes after taking a total of 100 grams of sugar, in any form, the immune responses drops drastically. The effect lasts for five hours. The average American consumes over 110 grams of sugar per day. Salt is almost as abused as sugar. There is a clear distinction between the taste and an actual substance. When Ayurveda uses the word taste , it literally means when you put something on your tongue.