Flavor Sensitivity


Perhaps there is no state more embroiled in vaping advocacy and suppression than the great state of New York. On the one hand, you have New York City mayor Bill De Blasio signing a bill to hike cigarette prices to a minimum of $13 per pack in an effort to get the city’s estimated 900,000 smokers to let go of the deadly habit. And on the other hand, you have those like Manhattan Assemblywoman, Linda Rosenthal, who wants to ban the sale of flavored e-cigarette liquids to curb teen vaping. Again, with supposedly “little research” there are those who still associate the assumed dangers of vaping with the well-known dangers of smoking.

According to Rosenthal, bubble gum and strawberry flavored vapes appeal to kids.

“I don’t know many adults who would like to inhale bubble gum or strawberry vapor. That kind of product is meant to appeal to kids.”

The legislation, if approved, would mark the latest in a series of recent measures taken by the state to curb e-cigarette use, especially among minors.

Okay, perhaps the title of this piece is a bit childish. After all, not all old people poop in their pants. Some do, but not all. And while desired tastes are largely preferentially based, we can assume with a good level of confidence that the majority of seasoned folk would enjoy sweets if they were nutritionally sound.

Without taste buds, we don’t taste. There’s nothing revolutionary behind this understanding.

And according to Andelcare, a Seattle based Home Care Agency for the elderly, the older we get, the fewer taste buds we have and the less sensitive they become. In our prime we have between 10,000 and 15,000 taste buds. By about age 70, many people have lost two out of three. With only 3,000 to 5,000 less sensitive taste buds to work with, it’s no wonder that an older person’s sense of taste will decline. Lab tests have shown that older people lose sensitivity to salty and bitter taste first. The ability to distinguish “sweet” appears to remain the longest.

For years, caregivers have maintained that the elderly seem to crave sweets. It makes sense when we consider that as we age, it is our sensitivity to sweet foods that remain the strongest. On top of that, it makes sense when we consider that “sweet” is the food sensation that has been enjoyed most throughout our lives.

Julie Hart of the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network applauded Rosenthal’s legislation by adding,

“Sweet products have fueled the popularity of e-cigarettes to kids. Chocolate, gummy bear, cotton candy, cookies and cream— these are all things that are enticing to kids.”

But is this entirely true? Are chocolate, gummy bear, cotton candy, cookies and cream and or any other “sweet” flavored vape juice bringing more kids to vaping than adults?

Seeing as Mt Baker Vapor’s top selling vape juices are, “Hawk Sauce, Cinnamon Roll, Green Apple and Berry Crunch Cereal, (which are all sweet flavored vapes, I might add), combined with the fact that our customer demographic is between the ages of 25-55, I think it safe to assume that “sweet” flavored vapes are just as enticing to adults as they are to kids.

Personally, and I ask this from a position of pure opinion and nothing more, does the Manhattan Assemblywoman understand that smoking traditional tobacco cigarettes claims nearly 500,000 lives every year? As one commenter said on a vaping forum,

“It is a no-brainer that kids like treats, but equating that to kids vaping is kind of stupefying.”

It is the Linda Rosenthal’s and Julie Hart’s of the world that pose a danger to a product that has made a difference in so many lives. Throwing uncredited, un-cited “shade” at an industry is unfair in my opinion and could end up doing more harm than good.


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Photography Major from Western Washington University .
I joined MBV back in December 2014 and am happy to be working in an industry focused on helping others.

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