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how does having a cold affect the sense of taste?

Most of what we "taste" depends upon what we smell. A cold interferes with our sense of smell, so that our food doesn't taste very good then.

Check this site for more details.

http://www.jhu.edu/~jhumag/996web/taste.html

Taste of foods is closely related to smell senses. If the aromas cannot get to the smell sense organs, yes, taste is affected.

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