Article from the Tropical Fruit News magazine of the Miami Rare Fruit Council International
by Bob G Cannon II
New Benefits from Miracle Fruit
Few growers of tropical fruits are unaware of the Miracle Fruit, Synsepalum dulcificum,
and its property of confusing one's taste buds. The small red fruit of
this African species are used locally to enhance the flavor of native
foods. Collectors and researchers throughout the world grow this plant
mostly as a curiosity. The fascinating principle of a fruit that turns
sour to sweet ensures this plant a place in many collections. Few can
resist the "Old Sweet Lime" trick where a visitor is given a miracle
fruit to sample (alone, they are nothing special) but no explanation,
shortly thereafter the unwitting visitor is given a "new, special sweet
lime" to taste. EuREKA! Good lime flavor but no sweetener needed, what
a great lime! Kinder-hearted trickster inform the person of what really
happened and send them away with a couple of miracle fruit of possible.
Some victims are given a "sweet" lime to take-home to the spouse -- and
For years Rare Fruit Council members have been
growing ,eating and distributing miracle fruit seed, RFCI founder
William Whitman has eaten hundreds at a time (the best way to clean any
fruit seed) and reports never having had an adverse effect.
20 years ago miracle fruit was slated for development as a sugar
alternative. The problem of use and storage were solved and plans
underway to see the product marketed. (Not as easy as you might think,
as to work its miracle, the active element needs to be eaten before the
sour or unsweetened food). Plants were being grown in some number to
supply the glycoprotein that serves to reverse sour to sweet.
glycoprotein is the chemical, contained in the fruit's juice, that
coats the tongue. One on the tongue the glycoprotein interferes with
the sour taste buds causing sour-tasting foods to become sweetened as
if by magic.
The full story of the attempt to commercialize
miracle fruit contains the appearance of industrial espionage, burglary
and government misuse of power. The true" story and all of the facts
may never be known but a good basic accounting of the fruit and these
events appears in Tropic Fruit News April 1992.
history it would be easy to think that the miracle fruit's story had
been told. Recent events have now produced what may be the most
beneficial if not the most useful application of miracle fruit. The use
of miracle fruit as an adjunct of cancer chemotherapy.
Kraujalis, a longtime member of the Rare Fruit Council International,
recently was diagnosed with cancer and underwent therapy. The good news
is that Ed appears to have won his battle with cancer.
interesting discovery he made was the use of miracle fruit to combat
the severe effects of chemotherapy. His letter, which is quite
enlightening, is reproduced here:
Miracle Fruit and Chemotherapy by Ed Krasujalis
As Ed says, please let us know if you have had experience with Synsepalum dulcifium
and relief of adverse effects from medications. We, and the research
community, need to know if miracle fruit can help patients who suffer
taste or nausea problems. (Yes, powerful anti-nausea drugs are
frequently given but they have their own side effects. In patients
where chemotherapy and the resultant effects has caused nutritional
problems could miracle fruit be of significant benefit?)
reader is undergoing medical therapy that has caused unpleasant taste
changes or nausea, speak with your doctor before trying miracle fruit.
It is time for the research establishment to conduct the necessary
tests and trails on S. dulcifium,
the University of Miami Medical School! Jackson Memorial Hospital in
Miami would be a good starting place as would several others.
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