The Thrill Is Gone

From Eating.

Which is a bummer, because, I love to eat.

I especially love to eat brunch at the goat cheese making class because it is DELICIOUS!!!!  Hand crafted cheeses with exceptional flavors, farm fresh, bright yellow eggs, warm freshly ground whole wheat bread, homemade peach preserves, cold goat’s milk, hot coffee and my favorite…honey vanilla yogurt with fruit and nuts.  It is TO DIE FOR.

And that’s just what my taste buds did last night, sometime in the middle of the night: DIE.

In the middle of the night, I woke up with a cough that wouldn’t go away with a drink of water, so to avoid completely awakening everyone in my family with my hacking, I snuck out of bed (which is relative, when you’re having a mini coughing attack) in search of a throat drop. 

In the bathroom, I had two choices.  Cepacol Throat Lozenge, which I knew would make my throat go numb…not necessary since I’m not sick and don’t have a sore throat…or Cold Eeze Zinc Lozenge.  I chose the Cold Eeze.

BAD CHOICE.  Bad girl.  Bad girl.  Bad girl.

After-the-fact, I have squeezed some internet research into my class filled day, to learn that one of the “normal” side effects of Cold Eeze Zinc Lozenges is a loss (temporary, they say) of taste.


But, on the bright side, it’s an experience that helps you appreciate your ability to taste, when you had it.

And, a clear realization as to why many elderly people (I used to work as an Occupational Therapist with older people) overly salt their food.  With age, many lose their sense of taste, think the food isn’t properly spiced, and pour on the salt.

Well, at brunch, salt was the only flavor I could taste.  If I put it straight on my plate and dipped the cheese straight into it. 

Otherwise, I was eating, “Hand crafted whitish stuff with the exceptional texture of thick sand, farm fresh, bright yellow rubber, warm freshly ground squishy sponge, homemade cold preserves, cold goat’s liquid, hot dirty water and my favorite…honey vanilla wallpaper paste with chunks.”  It was far from To Die For.

I, many times, forgot about my taste bud impairment, and wondered how I could have so misguided my mozzarella makers that they didn’t put any salt (although I distinctly remembered they had…) into the chalk trying to pass as cheese that I was attempting to swallow.

And, how, after helping one of my students drench the yogurt in honey and vanilla, it could have tasted so distinctly like unsweetened flour mixed with water.

Aaaahhh, yes, I just can’t taste it.  Right.  How quickly we forget.

So, now it’s 18 hours past the Cold Eeze introduction to my mouth.  I am just starting to barely be able to taste.  Hopefully sleep will work its healing wonders and rinse all the zinc straight out of my mouth, taste buds and body. 

And, you heard it here first:


And, I recommend you don’t either.


–  The Goat Cheese Lady

About The Goat Cheese Lady

I am Lindsey. At first I was a city girl. Growing up, the closest thing I had to farm animals were a cat and a cockatiel. In 2009, Herbert (my husband) and I bought our first milk goat and I instantly became an urban farmgirl, attempting to balance city and farm life..before I knew “urban homesteading” was a thing. That’s when we began The Goat Cheese Lady Farm, hence The Goat Cheese Lady blog you’re visiting now. After moving to the country in 2014, I embarked on life as a rural farmgirl. We continued teaching farm and cheesemaking classes, raising more goats and began construction on our cheese creamery. But life had other plans and in 2017, we decided that, due to financial and health issues, we had to close the farm for business. No more classes, no more creamery, a lot less milking. We went back to off farm jobs, I as an Occupational Therapist, Herbert in construction with his business, D&A Home Remodeling. At that point, I made a silent promise to myself that I would corral my entrepreneurial mind and focus on a job for a year. Well, it has been a year and I am back. Not to classes, cheese, soap or lotion, but back to writing. I love it. I’m not sure where it will lead me, but that’s where I’m starting. I’ll continue to write as The Goat Cheese Lady for now, and whatever the future holds, I’ll let you know. Our two boys are 14 and 11 and continue to be louder than my sister and I ever were. We have two dogs, Montaña and Flash, a cat, Jumpy, a flock of chickens and three goats. Yes, we still have Lucy, the goat who helped us start it all and was milked by over 1,000 people. She’s retired but still the boss. Chocolate provides enough milk for our family with some to spare for the dogs. Soccer friends, school friends, coyotes and mice are frequent visitors. There are way too many flies and every so often we see an owl. I’m glad you’re here. Sometimes you’ll laugh out loud, other times you’ll be inspired to appreciate the small things. My hope is that, over your morning cup of coffee or your afternoon work break, you’ll enjoy the antics and inspiration that are my daily life. Lindsey
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35 Responses to The Thrill Is Gone

  1. Suzy Johnson says:

    I took a ground up zinc tablet a few hrs ago (cant swallow pills) and everything started tasting terrible, had taken one last night too but no effect then. Had no idea zinc would do that, also have had burned mouth syndrome for several yrs and thats been acting up so this is kind of scary. Hoping it will go away ??

  2. Gregor says:

    I have taken zinc lozenges many times before. Last night woke up with a sore throat
    took some and this morning my sore throat was gone but everything tasted bland, the bitter coffee and pineapple juice all bland.

    I did a test and I could taste salty and bitter and sweet and sour but all much less, especially salty. my nose still a bit blocked which I often have in the morning so my sense of smell is there but not sure if fully back ..

    I have taken before and never had an issue. What i noticed all had the issue when taking them at night . I think its when one takes them at night while lying down that it stays too long on one spot or some runs up the nose..that it does this.
    Concerning.. Will never take at night and if do will make sure its all dissolved before going to sleep. Right now trying to get the metallic taste out of my moth.
    Some sour fruit is already tasting almost normal. I suggest sour fruit because it will neutralize the zinc ions that kill the cold virus.

  3. elfie says:

    I love Cold EEZE for the amount of time it shaves off of the cold symptoms, but the temporary loss of taste is so annoying! I usually get my tastebuds back after 6 hours. This cold is so bad that my sense of taste is limited by my loss of the sense of smell already so I went ahead with a 4 lozenge in 24 hour regime. Not over the cold but my symptoms were reduced dramatically by today, already. I know it works better for some than others.

    I love “La Chèvre”, and hope to try your cheese some day. Sorry that you had that experience right before such a lovely meal.

  4. Alon Jonson says:

    You wrote this blog RE: “Cold Ease” 6 years ago, You are absolutely, correct about the loss of taste. This stuff has a terrible taste and everything one places in his/her mouth, taste horrible. I’m gonna check the box liner notes to see if there are warnings (ex: BEWARE THIS LOZENGER MAKES FOOD,CANDY AND EVEN JELLO TASTE BAD) I don’t recall being advised about a funny, horrible, nasty thing it does to the mouth and tongue of the consumer. This is my last purchase. That’s how bad it taste. In fact, a cold taste better. REALLY!!

    • You’re right, Alon…and I haven’t had a Cold Ease since! I agree…a cold does taste better! Lindsey

    • Jeannie L'amata di formaggio says:

      LINDSEY: Wrote this response a year ago but your blog was experiencing technical difficulties & I couldn’t post it. Let’s see if this time it works. Was DELIGHTED to see Murray’s Cheese Shoppe in NYC’s West Village is now carrying your cheese – congrats! I promised Lindsey that I would report back. When did I recognize the problem? Well it was 01/31/2016 that upon discovering the link between my “taste issues” and zinc lozenges I FREAKED out and all remaining lozenges were quickly disposed. I had been taking about ~2 or 3 a day, mostly at night for 2 weeks up to that point.
      It was on 02/12 (this past Friday) that I could say with confidence, my taste buds had come back. It’s solely serendipity that this blog is so graciously maintained by the Goat Cheese lady – and I love cheese. Because the lozenges made “salty” the only taste that seemed “normal” to me, in my despondency I went and dropped some big bucks at the Zabar’s Cheese department on Manhattan’s Upper West Side. As recently as Tuesday, the raw Machego still seemed “off” to me; the Dolce Gorgonzola bland, the Agour from the Pyrenees, “meh.” But by Thursday the joy was returning. On Friday I finally tried a glass of wine. It was a merlot ( NOT my choice) but it was presented to me as a gift from the donor’s homeland of Argentina. Well when I discovered that even a merlot could taste good – I knew “the buds were back in business.” On Valentine’s Day I enjoyed all the aforementioned cheeses plus brie and pecorino truffelato (aged goat with truffles.) TWO FULL WEEKS it took. I’m considering sending a note to the FDA. It was all too scary.
      Hang in there, have faith, spread the word and above all Buon Appetito!! And many, many thanks to Lindsey! hugs, Jeannie

      • Jeannie! I am so glad you updated us and SO GLAD your taste buds are back in action! What a disaster to not be able to taste cheese and wine! As far as my cheeses at Murray’s, not yet…but hopefully in the future! I’ll give them a call and check into it though! Thanks again for following up and glad your back in good taste bud health! Lindsey

    • Tricia says:

      Ditto for me! How is the possibility of losing your sense of taste not mentioned on the box? The last quick melt I took was over 30 hours ago & I still can’t even “taste” water. I’m very worried about this being permanent.

  5. JoeInMidwest says:

    I used cold-eeze lozenges around Dec/Jan, and have not felt the same since. I thought maybe the cold I had also had some serious flu effects, but, I have also lost my sense of taste and smell. Not totally, but food is just not the same anymore. It’s been over three months now, and I plan to see a doctor this coming week.
    I already have lost a lot of my hearing, and one of my hearing aides died (and they are too expensive to replace). My sight is much better after cataract surgery, so the only sense I have left that is still there is touch, but the bottoms of my feet and two fingers are kind of numb. And I am only 65 yo.

  6. Stella says:

    Dear Goat Cheese Lady,
    Same story here-foodie visiting Santa Fe, got a cold and used Cold Eze lozenges for a day.
    A week later I still can taste nothing and my tongue is burning! Scary!
    What have you learned?
    Thanks so much

    • Stella, Oh no!! Mine came back after a day, I didn’t have burning. Have you gone to see a doctor? I’m so sorry this is happening to you!!! Lots of times, when people comment here, they don’t return to tell us how they are doing, how it resolved, how long it lasted, etc…so I’ve only learned what people have posted here. Although I can’t help you with more knowledge, would you please return and give us all an update post as you heal to tell us how long, what worked, etc? That way your experience will help others. Good luck Stella, I hope you can taste again and your tongue stops burning soon! Lindsey

  7. Jeannie M McGuire says:

    Dear Lindsey, my gosh and THANK-YOU for being so dedicated by coming back to this chain of comments on zinc cold remedies and loss of taste. I’m a REAL FOODIE. Cooking is my Zen. I develop all my own recipes. I was taking the zinc lozenges, only at night for about 2-3 weeks. The first thing I noticed was my wine tasted “off.” Well after the 3rd bottle tasted “off” ( and none met the description of “wine god bad”) something clicked. I remembered the Zicam nasal spray had to be pulled from the market because people experienced permanent loss of smell. It’s been five days since I stopped using the lozenges and my taste isn’t fully returned. Wine-blech; citrus fruit- yuck; Hagen Daz vanilla ice-cream – bitter. Yesterday I was at Zabar’s on Manhattan’s Upper Westside at their cheese counter (Arguably one of the best cheese departments in the entire country) and it was sad.
    Commentators here on your blog have described better than i can.
    You give me hope when you say it was only temporary. I’ll keep you posted on my progress. Maybe some day your cheeses will arrive in Zabar’s or Murrays in NYC! Hopefully my tastebuds will be able to fully appreciate them! Again thank you for leaving this thread open!

    • Jeannie, You’re welcome! I never knew when I wrote it that it would connect with so many people! I hope you will update on how you’re doing, because, although it seems rare, when it happens, well…it sucks. And when your taste comes back, it’s awesome! Thanks for the vote of confidence in my cheeses being at Murray’s or Zabar’s sometime in the future!! First, I’ll have to visit NYC! I’ve never been there! Let us know how you’re doing! Lindsey

  8. Martini730 says:

    After using a Wegman’s zinc lozenge last night to preempt a sore throat, everything I taste is salty! Water tastes like I put sodium bicarbonate in it. I haven’t wanted to eat all day. I’ve never had this type of reaction before. Then again I don’t usually reach for the zinc. UMCKA is usually my homeo remedy of choice. We’ll stick with that.

    • Martini730, I hope your sense of taste came back to normal. Yuck. Lindsey

      • hvacr mike says:

        ugh. I just went through this in real time. I woke up in the middle of the night and one of my lymph nodes like behind the earlobe was a lil tough-feeling/puffy. this is always my bodys way of letting me know its getting ready to fight something off. lol. starting the night before last, everyone was coughing and sneezing. so last night, realizing i have a crazy work load right now (doing some overnights ontop of my reg schedule) i fig’d id take a cold eeze .. then another in the morning .. and another in the afternoon ..etc. before i went back to sleep, i got my nightly big tumbler of water and took the cold eeze. i didnt notice any metallic/sodium bicarbonate/milk of magnesia taste last night. so as usual, i woke up around quarter to 7 am with my mouth feeling pretty dry. then it hit me. i literally almost did a ‘spit take’ and was like ‘omg what’s wrong with this water!’ when i took a drink .. so i went out to my aunt and poured her a glass of water from our big brita filter carafe to make sure there wasnt something wrong with the filter and she said there was nothing wrong with it. i guess at this point im just sulking that i usually stay rl hydrated and eat good but now im so discouraged to. i generally treat my stomach good and eat a big variety of whole and less-processed foods. I was so disturbed by that taste that i dont even wanna eat or drink anything. the taste throws back memories of grade school and everyone getting stomach viruses and that nasty milk of magnesia stuff. lol.
        i wonder what vitamin water would taste like… with the electrolytes refined sugar interacting with the zinc and the taste buds =]

  9. SMB says:

    How has everyone fared with their sense of taste? Did it come back? It used the Zicam oral spray about 24 hours ago and lost most of my sense of taste within about 20 minutes — at least, that’s when I noticed it was all messed up. I can’t smell as well as I could before, either. My tongue has a lingering soreness and rough feeling, similar to the feeling you get after you’ve burned your tongue. I am very upset about this, as I am a real food lover and consider myself a foodie. A great deal of my life’s pleasure revolves around reading about, buying, preparing, and eating food, as well as food travel. Please tell me that you all recovered after a while!

  10. NorrinRadd says:

    Same thing happens with the oral mist version. Also with Zicam oral mist. But not always. Like Sammie, I’ve used them before with no problem, and they DO seem to be effective. But this time, while the stuff did abort the cold, I notice a distinct loss of taste, mainly in the center of my tongue.

  11. Stefanie says:

    Eek! I had 2 cold eeze lozenges yesterday and I realized while eating curry dinner last night my sense of taste is about 30%. Now it’s 8:21 am day two and no better. Did your sense of taste eventually return?!?!?! I’m pretty sad about the whole thing and there aren’t many others. Would you mind sending me an email to let me know?

  12. Sammie says:

    Lindsey, so true how you truly appreciate something once it’s gone. My boyfriend is sick and I felt like I was catching his cold/cough so I thought I’d be proactive and ward it off by spraying Cold Eeze before catching some z’s. Woke up in the morning and my breakfast didn’t taste right. I thought this was due to me just being sick. The day progressed and I couldn’t taste anything I ate and the following day the same thing. Finally, I decided to look this up online.

    Weird thing is that I’ve used Cold Eeze a couple times before and I didn’t have this problem. I really hope this is “temporary”. Makes me wonder why they don’t smack that warning clearly on the box. Shame on me for not doing my research before using the product, but STILL! I wouldn’t have used this knowing I could loose my sense of taste! Anyways, thanks for sharing. Looks like we’re not alone!

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