acim audio fruit berries, known as Synsepalum dulcificum, come from a slow growing plant that contains an active glycoprotein molecule called polyphenol with some trailing carbohydrate chains, called miraculin. The plant originated from the Tropical West Africa. When left grown in its natural habitat, it reaches up to 20 feet high. Once cultivated, it usually grows around 5 feet, but not more than 10 feet. The plant produces at least two crops per year. It grows as an evergreen plant and produces red berries after the rainy season is over. The fruit itself has low sugar content in spite of its mild sweet tangy taste.
The plant that yields miracle fruit berries, having originated from hot, wet tropical lowland, is intolerant of cold temperature, so it is relatively intolerant to frost and cannot be cultivated in countries with snow. This plant however can be placed indoors in containers to grow them. If placed outdoors in containers it is best to place them in the shade.
The plant’s hairy leaves are deep green in color with elongated edges and grow in a spire-like habit. The plant’s flowers are small (about 1/4 inch in size) and are colored white. They are produced in flushes through most of the months of the year. The edible part of the plant, the miracle berry, is a small, oval fruit that is bright red in color and ellipsoid in shape. It is approximately 2 to 3 cm long and is compared to that of the size of coffee beans. Every fruit contains a single seed.
It was Chevalier des Marchais who discovered and popularized miracle fruit berries. During his 1725 explorations in Africa, he came across the miracle berry in the native provinces of Tropical West Africa. He discovered the miracle fruit and its effect during one of his excursions when he saw that members of the local ethnic group each picked a berry and chewed it before they had their meal. When he asked the locals about it, they said that this plant that produces miracle fruit berries that, when eaten, cause sour and bitter foods such as lemon and lime to taste sweet.
In a study later conducted it was found out that when the fleshy pulp of the berry fruit was eaten the molecules of the fruit bind with the taste bud receptors. This was hypothesized to be caused by the trailing carbohydrate chain called miraculin. The miraculin in the miracle fruit berries acts by distorting the taste buds’ receptor to sweet substances making it responsive to acids thereby making sour and bitter foods to taste sweet for a period of 15 to 60 minutes.