Relationships Between the Htas2R38 Genetype, Food Choice, and Anthropometric Variables in Normal-Weighted and Overweight Adults
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Aim: Taste is a major determinant of food choice; however, there is a great lack of knowledge about how taste perception affects human nutrition. Bitter taste perception presents unique opportunities for investigating this subject. The aim of this study was to determine whether polymorphisms on the bitter taste receptor gene hTAS2R38 affect an individual's food choices and some anthropometric variables. Subjects and Method: In this study, the possible relationship between food preferences, body weight, and polymorphisms on hTAS2R38 was investigated in healthy volunteers (n=178) who weighed within the normal range (BMI: 20-24.9 kg/m(2), n=90) and those who were overweight, but otherwise healthy (BMI >= 25.0 kg/m(2), n=88). Descriptive information about the subjects was collected via a questionnaire, and anthropometric measurements were taken by the researcher. Records of three consecutive days of food consumption were collected to determine each subject's macronutrient intake. For identification of the hTAS2R38 genotype, samples were taken from each participant's in-mouth epithelial cell line, and the genetic material was analyzed at the laboratory for Rs713598. Results: The percentage of "non-tasters" (n=42) among the whole population was 23.6% (C-Homozygote: 23.6%) while "tasters" (n=136) comprised 76.4% (CG-Heterozygote: 46.6%, G-Homozygote: 29.8%). When group-wide and between-group comparisons were made, it was revealed that taster status didn't affect differences in anthropometric measures. Detected differences in macronutrient intake were due to gender. Discussion: Polymorphisms on hTAS2R38 bitter taste receptor gene had no effect on variables such as body weight, anthropometric variables, body fat percentage, or food choices within the study population.