adventures in texture: the journey of no taste or smell

Hello! I hope you’re doing well. ❤ On Monday of this week, I completely lost my senses of taste and smell. I had a fever, chills, body aches, and a few other symptoms the week before when I got COVID (read this post for a bit more on that), but now all I have is what I don’t have: smell or taste. 😂

It’s been the strangest thing in the world to keep remembering that I’m “sick” when I go to eat or drink yet there’s nothing to report. It’s weird when one of my family members makes a face and goes, “Do you smell that?” and alas, I do not. 😝

Going on four days of smelling and tasting nothing has been one of the weirdest journeys of my life.

I’m like a family science experiment; I’ve been sharing with everyone what food does taste like when you can’t taste it, and my findings have been crazy to say the least. Obsessing over the lack of flavor and scent my life has at the moment has been helping me to stay positive, because when I’m not challenging my palette 😂 I’m worried about how long my taste and smell will be gone. But I can’t stay anxious about that because it makes my heart rate go up and has caused shortness of breath a few times. So I’m gonna stay on the positive side of this. Would you like to come with me? (My findings are super crazy!)

In this post, I’m going to share with the world which foods are super awesome when flavor is obsolete. I have learned the startling truth behind sugar and salt, and how some of my previous favorite meals and snacks are very boring and dull at the moment.

I’ll also chat a little bit about how it actually feels to be missing two of my senses. I’m going to do a post like this once a week chronicling my food adventures for as long as my taste and smell are gone. Then I’ll probably do a food apprecation post once my senses return! 😂💕

If you have any questions I didn’t think to answer, you can ask them in the comments! 😊

adventures in texture

So, can I taste or smell anything?

Yes and no. The only thing resembling ‘taste’ I have at the moment is a fleeting awareness of different types of food and drink while eating them, and sometimes afterward. I can tell that my morning coffee is creamy; sour candy makes the tip and sides of my tongue light up; my breath is slightly cooler after brushing my teeth with mint toothpaste. These slight physical responses are present, but without any flavor at all.

When it comes to smelling, I can occasionally smell… my nose. I think. My brain picks it up sometimes, like ooh I think I smelled something! But it’s actually just my nose detecting that I’m breathing through it. So at the moment, the only thing I can smell is my smeller itself.

Which elements of food can I enjoy at the moment?

Two: texture and temperature! They’re all I’ve got at the moment, so I’m always looking for foods that bring a bit of intrigue.

(I had no previous notion before now that maybe 60% of the reason why I eat is to taste. My appetite being gone for a week, and my stomach refusing to signal to me when it’s hungry or full, has been strange. So I’m having to go by my old portion sizes to make sure I’m eating enough. 🧐)

Are my other senses amplified since two are MIA at the moment?

No. My vision’s the same (except for when COVID skews my depth perception 🤪 I felt drugged, when I asked my mom does that road look weird to you? and she looked concerned lol). My hearing’s normal. Oh, I guess my sense of touch is currently prioritized when it comes to eating, but not too strongly.

Now I’ll be rating food based on how I can experience them right now!

my food ratings

1 star: aka no salt, no point 😂

CHICK-FIL-A NUGGETS & FRIES: like… wow. Without our good friend Salt, the nuggets, fries, and BBQ sauce (my favorite thing in the world) was supremely boring. It makes me wanna cry to write that haha

NACHO CHEESE DORITOS: previously my VIP, now ex-MVP. The cheese powder and snap of the chips do nothing. And the texture turns strangely warm in my mouth, so without the normal cheesy yumminess, it’s kinda creepy.

CHOCOLATE: I had some hazelnut Quadratini wafers that I bought right before my senses left me on read, and they are uber dull without taste buds.

PIZZA: *breaks into a stirring rendition of ‘Tears’* my baby!! I never thought in my life pizza would make my ONE STAR LIST boohoo

2 stars: I’d eat it again
but there’s really no reason to 🙃

CHEESE: I had a slice of provolone yesterday, and it made my tongue light up, but I mean 🤷 ’twas subtle.

CANNED PEACHES & PEARS: like they were ok, but Elizabeth and Izzy love these so imma save them for the girls from now on

CHICKEN SANDWICH & TATER TOTS: this was the first dinner I ate without being able to taste anything. I put mayo and some cheese on the sandwich, and I think I had the tater tots without sauce, and it was just… dull.

GATORADE: I’ve been drinking a bit of Gatorade every day just to change up my fluid intake (did I mention water’s weird to drink), but the more I drink, the less I like it. For some reason, it’s the one thing I eat or drink where I forget every time that my taste is gone. So it’s like a rude awakening hah

PICKLES: I had one with dinner at some point this week and I cheerfully asked my mom while I crunched away, “Is this dill or sweet?” Because there was no way I could tell. It had a nice crunch, but the dill was rather dull. 😉

ALMONDS: these guys are mostly crunch anyway, but the nice aftertaste was gone.

SUGAR COOKIE: the sprinkles were kind of nice, but not really

PB&J SANDWICHES: a pretty iffy combo of textures without the flavor I usually like

WHEAT THINS: wow so boring

GOLDFISH: left me snoring

3 stars: ok I’m a little impressed 🙌

STRAWBERRY WAFFLES & SYRUP: I could kind of sense the syrup and the texture of the waffles was pretty good. But just like with most food at the moment, the lack of flavor and excess of calories and sugar just didn’t feel worth it haha

CEREAL (CINNAMON LIFE & FROSTED MINI WHEATS): I have one of these for breakfast every day, and the texture of both are nice with the cold milk. But I do miss the sweetness (life’s a little less sweet without you, my tasty cereal 😘)

4 stars: worth it, would eat again 🥨

TOWNHOUSE CRACKERS: there’s so much surface salt on top that it excites my tongue! I also have to have some every morning and evening with my steroid, so we’re like good friends now, these crackers and I

LITTLE PRETZELS: again, the salt on top (and the nice snap and crunch) were thrilling

COCONUT POPSICLES: my mom saw me having one of these earlier this week and was like, “Why?” so I told her. 😂 they’re cold and creamy, the coconut adds a bit of texture, and popsicles are fun to eat. Not the most awesome thing, but still pretty good.

5 stars: ok you’re my new best friend 👭

WAVY LAYS + SOUR CREAM DIP: I had these a few nights ago just because. My mom was having some, and I sullenly thought, why not? Yeah, exactly! 😂 I’m so glad I had them because they make me really happy now. I used to just like them previously, but the nice combination of wavy chips and the cool, smooth dip work great together. However, I jokingly told my mom that the dip could have easily been face cream or something lol, so I’m glad she was having some of the dip with me and could confirm it’s legitness 🤣

SIDE SALADS: I went ahead and made myself a little Caesar salad last night, complete with dressing, croutons, and lettuce, and YES. The cool Caesar dressing, crunchiness, and combination of textures complimented each other so well. I thought it was gonna be gross without flavor but I was wrong.

crazy moments

I did an apple cider vinegar sniff + taste test. This is my least favorite substance on Earth, so I challenged myself to the fullest. I gave our ACV bottle a huge sniff and… I smelled nothing! My family was like 😱😂 Then I got a spoonful of it and gave it a lick. It startled me when the acidic bubbles reacted on my tongue, and then tingled for moments afterward. I rinsed with water after that, but there was really no reason to looool

I couldn’t smell that one of the gas burners on our stove had gotten bumped. So I was just sitting in the kitchen, watching YouTube and minding my own business, completely unaware of all the natural gas I was inhaling. My mom could smell it on the opposite side of the house and rushed into the kitchen to turn it off. That was quite scary but I was surprisingly fine.

I made a snack bowl a few days ago of a bunch of chips and crackers that don’t go together. I was watching Spider-Man 2 with my mom and Samuel and I thought it would be funny to combine snacks that don’t go together (like almonds, Doritos, and BBQ chips), then eat them at the same time. The texture combinations were quite disturbing but I wasn’t affected by the varying tastes in the least 😂

It feels amazing to be free from overwhelming smells for a while! Usually, my senses of taste and smell get overloaded a few times a day because they’re sensitive. So it has been a huge blessing to get some time off from sensory overdrive!

It’s strange to have to rely on others to let me know if something smells or tastes off. It’s not something I ever thought I’d need assistance with, so it’s been a really unique experience.

When I had the CFA fries a few days ago, they were too hot to be eating. But without tasting the fiery saltiness, my tongue didn’t make me spit them out. This resulted in an inflamed taste bud. Who knew flavor helps in rejecting uncomfortable food? 🤷😂


Thanks so much for reading! This post has been therapeutic and fun to write, and I dedicated most of my morning to it. In closing, I’ll leave you with a Maroon 5 lyric that speaks to me:

“I miss the taste of a sweeter life” 😂

Which of my new food ratings surprised you the most? Which food/s should I try if I get the chance to? Have you ever lost your taste and/or smell? Let’s chat in the comments!

23 Comments

  1. I’m going to save this post for when/if someone I know (or I😂) gets Covid! It’s so funny how much we take for granted. This was a beautiful idea on your part, very timely and helpful too! I hope you and your family are recovering fast!💕

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes I hope it helps! Absolutely 😆 my mom asked if I was going to do a post on the smell/taste experiences I’m having right now, and I thought it was a great idea! Thanks D ❤️ I’m feeling pretty good (aside from the flavorlessness 😭😂), my siblings are doing great, my dad’s fine, and my mom’s resting and taking care of herself 💜

      Liked by 1 person

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