Calcium taste preference and sensitivity in humans: II. Hemodialysis patients

Micah Leshem, Jacob Rudoy, Jay Schulkin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Calcium is an essential nutrient. However, in humans, despite widespread belief in a calcium appetite, it has hardly been studied experimentally. Here, we compared the avidity for calcium in 10 hemodialysis patients and 10 healthy controls to test whether disturbed calcium metabolism alters the preference for calcium. Hemodialysis patients did not differ from controls in their taste responses to CaCl2 solution. However, they found high levels of CaCl2 in cheese tastier. Our findings are indicative of a possible increased calcium appetite related to perturbed calcium metabolism in humans. The findings also suggest that for hemodialysis patients calcium added to foods might increase their palatability.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)409-414
Number of pages6
JournalPhysiology and Behavior
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2003

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank Lilach Unger and Dganit Lugassy for carrying out the experiments. This study was supported by an Israel–U.S. Binational Science Foundation grant No. 94-00206/1 to ML and JS.


  • Calcium
  • Calcium appetite
  • Hemodialysis
  • Human
  • Taste preference

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Behavioral Neuroscience


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