I slowly realized that I couldn't taste anything. I had a coppery, salty taste in my mouth and all flavors were missing. Even a candy bar tasted something like gasoline.
What was going on? I turned to Dr. Google. Sinus infection, gum disease, brain tumor, early onset Alzheimer's? That didn't sound good. However, there was one other possibility. Some people mentioned that they had burned their taste buds by chewing cinnamon gum. The day before, I had eaten some particularly strong cinnamon gummy bears (don't judge. Everything in moderation). My tongue and mouth felt like it was burned afterwards. This could be it. Supposedly, taste buds take 10-14 days to grow back.
I decided to wait it out. "I wish I had that," people said, alluding to possible weight loss benefits. No. No, you don't. It's miserable having everything taste terrible, even a simple salad. It's hard to force yourself to eat, knowing you need the energy, when everything tastes disgusting.
"Food is fuel," is a popular saying. It's obviously true: you need food to fuel your body and energize you for your workouts and your life. But sometimes this saying is used in a somewhat superior way by people, almost as if they look down on people who enjoy eating.
But food isn't just fuel. Now that my taste buds are starting to return (it's taken 3 weeks, and sugar is still lagging), I realize how important it really is to experience a good meal. If food was just fuel, we would be happy with a pill every day instead of eating. Meal replacements like Slim Fast would work forever and we wouldn't crave anything else.
I'll never be a "foodie," but I'll never take the sense of taste for granted again. I had tacos with friends last night, and they were delicious. Food is meant for nourishing our bodies but it was also meant for enjoyment. If we make good choices (with leeway for candy or whatever it is for you), we get both benefits.
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