Unlike a diminished sense of smell which strikes with a blocked nose or sinusitis infection, people who have COVID-19 can feel indifferent to simple smells. Some go on to suggest that they find it hard to differentiate wine from gasoline, spices, milk and other related odours.
Now, one reason why coffee in particular has been given prime importance with COVID sniff tests is because of its distinct taste and smell. Researchers have found anecdotal evidence to showcase exactly how coffee, with its strong, distinct aroma can act as a loss of smell indicator.
According to experts, given how anosmia is a widely present symptom in COVID cases, global availability of coffee can make it an easier test to apply.
A Tufts University Professor, James Schwob, one of the lead researchers to make a case for the coffee test says that it could also act out as an early sign of when to call the doctor:
“One of the things that can be done pretty easily, pretty objectively by someone at home would be to take some ground coffee and see how far away you can hold it and still smell it,”
He also suggests that the same thing could be done with scents like rubbing alcohol, chocolate or shampoo.