Many Benefits of a Miracle Fruit

When you lick the miraculous fruit, at first, it gives a mild sour taste a bit like a grape. This later change subtly as it lingers in the mouth in a very interesting way and for the next 30 minutes or more, it gives a sweet taste to any food or drinks taken, even the sourest ones.

Miracle fruit, miracle berry, miraculous berry or sweet berry as it is called originated from West Africa. It is the bright-red, grape-sized berry that goes by different local names in different parts of the country.

Miracle fruits usually alter the way the palette perceives sour flavours temporarily by rendering them sweet and making the tongues’ taste receptors perceive sour food as being sweet.

This effect is brought about by miraculin, a glycoprotein molecule present in the fruit, with some trailing carbohydrate chains, which is used commercially as a sugar substitute. When the fleshy part of the fruit is eaten, the molecule binds to the tongue’s taste buds, causing sour foods to taste sweet. This sweetening effect lasts until the protein is washed away by saliva. That is, up to about an hour after taking the fruit.

The fruit pulp is traditionally used to sweeten palm wine; to improve the flavour of sour maize bread; and other concoction or medicines with unpleasant tastes.

Miracle fruit is a natural dieting supplement that would not stop its wonders just on your taste buds; it also gives a whole lot of nutritional values. It is a natural, healthy and totally harmless alternative to sugar and sweeteners. It is of proven advantage to people who need to avoid sugar intake like diabetics, people trying to lose weight or those who just choose to cut back on their sugar intake. In Japan and some other parts of the world, miracle fruit is popular among patients with diabetes.

A recent study conducted at the Mount Sinai Medical Centre, Miami, Florida, United States, also showed that cancer patients under chemotherapy who experience taste disturbances like feeling a metallic taste when eating can also use miracle fruit to regain the flavour of foods and stop the metallic taste.
In foods, miracle fruit is used as a low-calorie sugar-free sweetener. The shelf life of the fresh fruit is within two to three days. Freeze-dried pulps are available in granules and tablets, and these can last for 10 to 18 months. Due to the fact that heating de-natures miraculin, the pulp to be used for commercial purpose must be preserved without heating.

Miracle fruit is all-natural and there are no reported adverse side effects associated with the consumption of the fruit. Currently, attempts are being made to create a commercial sweetener from the fruit, with the hope of developing this for patients with diabetes.

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