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Miracle (or Magic) Fruit
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Yes, there really is such a thing as Miracle Fruit. You over there, stop smirking. Yes, you. You know who you are. Honest. I looked it up in Wikipedia, and you can, too.

The entry is titled (deep breath) "Synsepalum dulcificum" and it describes a plant whose berry has carbohydrate chains that cause the taste buds to perceive sour or acid as sweet. Munch that lemon!

In the 70's there was an effort to use it as a sweetener for use by diabetics and dieters, but the FDA classified it as a food additive. The FDA was accused of caving in to pressure from the sugar industry and refused to release its records. Our government at work.

It's popular in Japan for use by diabetics and there has been some interest by cancer patients to counteract the metallic taste caused by chemo.

There's a renewed interest in miracle fruit these days as the obesity epidemic has hit the headlines and finally been acknowledged as a major health concern. I recently came across an ad for a tea concentrate containing miracle fruit--just add half a dropperful to a cup of water. I'd love to try it, just out of curiosity, but the price is prohibitive.

Whatever happened to free samples? The cigarette companies used to have hawkers on street corners giving out free little boxes of cigarettes, no age limit. Little kids were grabbing them like candy.

Oh, but nowadays we have to be protected from ourselves. Check those shoe heels; there might be an explosive device.

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