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Miracle Fruit Benefits: Can It Help Cancer Patients and Diabetics?

Miracle Fruit Benefits: Can It Help Cancer Patients and Diabetics?

Synsepalum dulcificum, commonly known as miracle fruit or miracle berry, is a widely used sweetening agent that makes sour items taste sweet. It may be a sweetening agent, but miracle fruit is tasteless, and its sweetener property is similar to sugar. However, it is not considered as an additive and a natural and non-caloric sweetener. So what are the miracle fruit benefits?

Why is Miracle Berry Used By Diabetics and Cancer Patients?

Miracle fruit benefits low-calorie eaters. As a sweetening agent, it is recommended to eat before consuming other foods and drinks. For example, some developed low-calorie cakes for commercials come with citric acid ingredients. After eating a miracle fruit, a person can taste the sweetness of the cake despite having no sugar additive in the mix.

Sour foods can taste sweet with the miracle fruit due to its miraculin extract. Miraculin is a taste receptor that coats and contracts with sweet tongue taste buds. Hence, all acidic or sour foods will taste sweet for the next hour and a half. This helps cancer patients and diabetics as it can mask the sometime unpleasant tastes of the medicine.

Aside from Miraculin, the miracle fruit is also rich in Vitamin C, leucine, and flavonols. Some studies argue that the miracle fruit is not only sought after for altering taste; it also has antioxidant, antibacterial, and anticancer properties. Thus, miracle fruit benefits one’s overall wellbeing.

Miracle fruit plants often grow in West African and Florida, but have also been known to be grown in the Philippines.

Miracle fruit benefits: What are they?

For cancer patients

Miracle fruit benefits cancer patients who are undergoing chemotherapy as they lose their taste sensation due to the medications used to treat their condition. This side effect only lasts for a few months, but some do not regain their sense of taste afterwards.

In this case, miracle fruit is recommended to help cancer patients improve their taste. However, sweetness is the only flavor they may taste in every food.

For diabetic patients and those who want to lose weight

Some researchers also saw the potential of using miracle fruit as a medical application to end the obesity epidemic. We all know that one of the causes of obesity is the consumption of too many sweets. To address that problem, the miracle fruit can be used as aa replacement for artificial sweeteners due to its low-calorie properties. It can also help the insulin resistance of diabetic people as it can give them a chance to eat or consume sweet foods.

Moreover, the pulp of a miracle fruit benefits more with yogurt. According to a study, the fruit’s pulp has a higher anti-diabetic property than the standard drug for diabetes treatment known as acarbose. The mixture of miracle fruit pulp and yogurt shows much greater benefits.

For those undergoing chemotherapy

On the other hand, the antioxidant property of miracle fruit benefits those who take chemotherapeutic drugs. It can help enhance the effects of medication and also reduce the side effects of the drugs in the patient, including nausea, vomiting, development of abdominal or pelvic tumors, and mutagenesis.

Other miracle fruit benefits

Some reports also stated that the miracle fruit lowers alcohol levels and reduces hangovers. Aside from sour foods, bitter beverages, such as alcoholic drinks, can also become sweet when miracle fruit coats the palate before drinking.

What are the risks of using miracle fruit?

Miracle fruit benefits people with medical conditions, but risks are still present.

Here are some:

Most native people often use miracle fruit to sweeten their foods. However, it is also a concern since it is a fruit from plants with low calories. Thus, it may affect the calorie intake of people who often use this fruit to treat their health conditions.

In the 1970s, the Food and Drug Association denied the use of miracle fruit because it lacked scientific studies to back its beneficial claims. However, recent studies yield different, more positive results pertaining to the the beneficial properties of miracle fruit to our health.

When consuming miracle fruit, people may end up over-drinking acidic or sour drinks. This tendency may agitate the digestive system and may lead to some illnesses and complications, especially if a medical condition exists.

How to consume miracle fruit?

There are different ways of consuming miracle fruit. The most basic is to coat the mouth with the juices of the berry, letting it stay in the mouth before swallowing to take effect.

Another way to consume miracle fruit benefits is by using its foam. It is often used as a garnish in cocktails or in any dip. Miracle berries should be freeze-dried to create a foam out of it. Like its primary use, it should be partnered with sour foods and beverages.

Key Takeaways

Miracle fruit, also called the miracle berry, offers a lot of benefits to our health. Miracle fruit may benefit cancer patients, diabetic people, and those who are on a diet. Aside from that, people who love to attend flavor-tripping parties can enjoy new different experiences with sour foods as the miracle fruit can make sour foods taste sweet.

Talk to your doctor for any concerns about use of the miracle berry.

Learn more about Herbals and Alternatives here.

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Sources

Human sweet taste receptor mediates acid-induced sweetness of miraculin https://www.pnas.org/content/108/40/16819 Accessed July 5, 2021

Synsepalum dulcificum https://www.mskcc.org/cancer-care/integrative-medicine/herbs/synsepalum-dulcificum Accessed July 5, 2021

The clinical effects of Synsepalum dulcificum: a review https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25314134/ Accessed July 5, 2021

Nutritional benefits, phytochemical constituents, ethnomedicinal uses and biological properties of Miracle fruit plant (Synsepalum dulcificum Shumach. & Thonn. Daniell) https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7785844/ Accessed July 5, 2021

Molecular mechanisms of the action of miraculin, a taste-modifying protein https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/23466289/ Accessed July 5, 2021

 

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Written by Stephanie Nicole Nera, RPh, PharmD Updated 3 weeks ago
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