Bitter taste

Had a stroke 10 weeks ago, and since then have had a bitter taste in my mouth which makes all food taste revolting. Has anyone experienced this?


Yep, had that really bad for about 4 months after mine which has gradually faded a bit but then again I’ve lost all feeling/taste on the LHS of my tongue and most of my smell (think that this was the covid that I caught in hospital rather then the stroke)


Very much so.
In hospital I suddenly developed an aversion for my favourite drink, coffee. It really tasted foul. I would order something off the menu for the day that I fancied, but when it arrived I could not manage more than a bite. For a while I was surviving on ice cream, jelly and fruit squash.

I’m pleased to say that my usual appreciation for food did return. It only lasted a few weeks, but was just another of the strange things that seem to happen after a stroke.

Try to not worry too much, it can be overwhelming, but come to this forum any time and compare notes. You’ll find others have been this way and managed to get through it. You will too.

Telling your story is a good way to get it out.

Keep on keepin’ on
:writing_hand: :grinning: :+1:


For me everything was just so bland and tasteless. Probably one of the reasons why I lost too much weight. So be careful of that, you’ve got to keep your strength up because you burn up so much energy just in recovery. You don’t want to end up looking like someone out of a prisoner of war camp, that’s how I looked :grimacing:
Hopefully it should return within a couple months for you too.
Welcome to the forum, it’s the best to be for providing all the answers the medical professionals don’t have time to answer. :smile:


many thanks , hopefully the bitter taste will go soon

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I consider myself to be quite a polite individual however during the first days in hospital (that I don’t recall too well but my wife does remind me of) it would appear that the change in taste and reduced inhibitions/loss of politeness aligned such that when the lady came to collect my plate after a meal that I hadn’t eaten (baked potato with cheese I believe) and she said something along the lines of “you really do need to eat to help you recover” I responded with “Well if you bring me something that doesn’t taste like s**t then I’ll eat it”. My wife was of course horrified and apologised profusely to the lady who just laughed and said “Don’t worry love, he’s right” :smiley:


Hi @sds
Welcome to the forum. sorry you had occasion to join us
you’ll find it the best club for getting your bearings after your stroke

I had funny taste buds after my stroke and I’m not sure if it’s my meds ( which I haven’t changed since being discharged 2yr+ago)

food just tasted funny about a month after my stroke and that lasted probably a year for most things

scrambled egg and a few other random things still tastes as if its got saccharin in it even today. Mostly I’ve either got used to the taste or the strangeness has gone away. either way I don’t really notice a problem anymore


@sds hi & welcome to the forum. It seems a bitter taste might be quite common. I had it too. My fav food tasted horrid & like @Bobbi i couldn’t stand coffee either - my previous go to drink. It didn’t last too long although I still get times when things taste odd.

The weight loss issue is an important one. Try & eat however yuck it tastes as you’ll need all your strength for recovery.

Best wishes




Incidentally, you might or might not want to know this, but I also stopped having a poo.

The nursing staff kept offering something to ‘help’. I’d never taken stuff like that before and refused the offer each time.

Then one day I asked for a bed pan. The result was extremely large and solid. The nurse went around the ward showing it to other members of staff. I think it was something in the way of a record.

Every thing settled into a pretty ordinary routine after that.

. . . then there are the uncontrollable fits of giggles, streams of tears and strange reactions to pretty harmless comments or attempts to help.

Yes, I did it my way, but it seems I’m not the only one who did.
You have so much to look forward to,

Keep on keepin on
:sleeping_bed: :smile: :+1:


Yes, my stroke was now 4 months ago and all food tastes vile! I have lost a stone due to small portion sizes as it’s so difficult to force horrible tasting food down. I find spicy food is the only food that tastes remotely edible.
It seems my most favourite foods are the ones that taste the worst. I long to enjoy good again.


@jal11 welcome to the forum. It seems that vile tasting food is more common than we thought.

I am 20 months on and still find my taste has altered although food no longer tastes vile. I have lost 4 1/2 stone & although i’m eating & on supplement drinks I can’t seem to put weight on.

If you can force some food in then try to so you don’t have tte problems I now have. Little & often might help.

Best wishes

Ann x


Thank you very much for your help @Mrs5K


Hi @jal11 and welcome to the forum :slightly_smiling_face:
Just a suggestion if you’re not eating much and to avoid losing too much weight, try taking a nutrient shake like Complan to top you up. It’s good those who suffer from low appetite or cannot get all the required nutrients, vitamins and minerals from their current diet. There are dozens on the market but that’s the only one I remember and could get in the chemist when getting my prescriptions :smile:




I have actually found the opposite!! I used to like a bit of spice - quite a bit.

Now I like wun tun soup and prawn gyoza and smoothies. That’s really about it!! Spice makes me vomit I’m afraid or worse just get flop sweat for 2 hours. even pepper or peppermint tooth paste is a pain

I’ve lost nearly 3 stone in 10 months and I was a bit chubby and I keep being told I look good but it’s not because I’m eating normally!

Hopefully you will regain some ability to enjoy things and you may be surprised at discovering new things!!

I also cannot eat when sitting down now for some reason - unless it’s chocolate or something.

I leave all my meals (well JP does) in the kitchen and when I go to get some water etc I have one or two bites. I’m proud of myself today as I had 7/12 of the prawn gyozas and I didn’t throw them up!! Took 2.5 hours but so what!

Stay cool :polar_bear: :wink:


@KGB Thanks that’s interesting! Good to hear other peoples experiences, that’s a lot o weight to lose, I hope you keep progressing well.


Hi @jal11
Welcome to the forum although I’m sorry you had cause to join us.

A lot of what we said many times to folk has been gather together and put into the welcome post tap the blue text for the following link

My taste deteriorated for several months after my stroke but now nearly 3 years on is mostly back to normal. Scrambled eggs still taste like saccharine but most stuff is ok. I found during the worst times the slightly spicy food was actually the most palatable so I suggest you have to cast around trying things to find out what suits you, and expect it to change

I lost three stone post stroke but have gained one of them back - which it didn’t really want and can’t go rid of now! The wife just told me I should blame her she does cook rather well :slight_smile:


Thank you so much for sharing your experience


HI @jal11

Tonight is the first time in 10 months I am trying a curry!!!

I have got it from our very local one and they seemed to have listened to me!! My ultra mild chicken korma is edible so far and virtually no flop sweat with my plain naan!!

@Bobbi I’m sure your naan is better :wink:

Just because the smell of JP’s chicken tika balti makes me sweat he has kindly agreed to eat it in the darts room!!

:polar_bear: :wink:

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@sds @jal11

How are you both doing? Keep on posting and talking!!!

Whats on the menu today?!

@SimonInEdinburgh @EmeraldEyes

As we were talking about…

:wink: :polar_bear:

Polar bear 'Arktos' eats an ice cake in the Canada landsape Yukon Bay of  the zoo in Hanover, Germany, 02 April 2012. The polar bear will leave the  zoo to go to