Mercyhurst University is challenging you to put your taste buds to the test.
The annual “Taste or Waist” food fair is scheduled for 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. March 19 in the Carolyn Herrmann Student Union.
Taste or Waist invites the university community to sample two versions of a dish: one regular, and one with reduced fat and calories. After a blind taste test of each item, the diners vote on which they think is tastier and which they believe to be healthier.
Students in the nutrition for health professionals course taught by Tim Harvey, assistant professor of sports medicine, have been preparing the appetizers, entrees and desserts for Taste or Waist annually since 2006.
Harvey said the event draws 200 to 300 people every year and makes people rethink the notion that fewer calories and less fat means less taste.
Harvey and his class have been keeping statistics on the votes since the event began eight years ago. Since then, he said, about 60 percent of the people voted that the healthier dishes also tasted better.
Taste or Waist is sponsored by the Sports Medicine Department and Campus Involvement Center. For a donation of 50 cents or a canned good, visitors will be able to taste a dish and cast their vote. All proceeds benefit the United Way of Erie County.