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Magical fruit?

By Kim Atienza

Magical fruits do exist. Unlike in fairy tales, they do not, however, grant a person special powers.

One such “magical fruit” is the miracle berry.

The small red berry, scientific name, Synsepalum dulcificum, is a plant native to West Africa.

Its fruit contains miraculin, a substance that makes sour or acidic food taste sweet when eaten.

It may prove beneficial to diabetics, who are averse to using artificial sweeteners as it has low sugar content.

The miracle berries are also useful among cancer patients whose palate have become metallic due to chemotherapy.

Natives of West Africa have been using miracle berries as sweeteners since the 18th century, according to European explorer Chevalier de Marchais in 1725.

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Send your questions on anything and everything to Kuya Kim through my Twitter account @kuyakim_atienza using #AlaminKayKuyaKim.