Lucky for those of us who like a nice glass of wine or a strong cup of coffee there is still no machine that can match the human taste bud in separating the horrible from the divine. Rest assured that your favourite wine, coffee or herbal remedy, has likely been tested by an expert known as a supertaster.
Only about 25 per cent of the population are supertasters because they have more papillae, or taste buds, on their tongues, allowing them to work as wine and coffee tasters, chefs and even herbalists. Jim Strauss of Kamloops, B.C., is one of those supertasters.
At age 57, after a heart attack and facing bypass surgery and a lifetime of drugs, he used his supertasting skills to recreate a herbal remedy passed down through generations of his family, and taught to him as a child — a formulation that he hoped would heal his failing heart.
Nearly 30 years later, the remedy, which contains a complex combination of herbs including garlic, cayenne, and bilberry, has become a highly popular product in Canada, and numerous other countries.
“I continue to receive letters from all over the world from people whose lives have been improved after taking my family’s products,” says the retired Strauss who recovered from his heart problems without having surgery, almost 30 years ago.
Dr. Carolyn Dean, Canadian physician and naturopath, says there is merit to using blends of herbs that have been expertly matched by supertasters like Strauss.
“Supertasters can compete with the most sophisticated laboratory equipment in their ability to distinguish between herbal constituents,” says Dr. Dean. “When illness occurs, additional stresses are placed on the body’s natural healing process. To rebuild and strengthen the body’s healing process, specific nutrients should be re-absorbed into the body to replenish the drained resources.”
“Herbal foods and formulations can provide these nutrients in proper proportions to empower and strengthen specific body functions. Our experience has shown that certain herbs work better together than others, many acting synergistically for specific indications, improving each other’s effectiveness.”