European is Adapting the Laser-Etched Fruit Technology

Iron oxides and hydroxides are applied to lasered part of the fruit to enhance contrast and make it more visible to human eye (and perhaps to machine eye too). The chemicals were previously not allowed under European Law. Now, laser etched fruits are expected to land European fruit stalls this late June.

When was my last post regarding this laser technique to label fruits. It was over two years ago. It was last February 27, 2011, when it was still in the development stage. I hoped for its adoption and appearance in local stores. Two years have passed and the Europeans are finally adopting. Spreading to the rest of the world would not take another two years I hope.


Uses Health Benefits of Acacia / Rain Tree

acacia pod

In my previous post, I did some research if fruit of acacia tree can be eaten.  The answer is yes, it is edible. Though eating such is not enjoyable due to some stated reasons.

While doing my research, I found many useful information about acacia or rain tree. I listed all the beneficial things I found.  I also tried to find some side effects to avoid bias, found nothing though.

acacia pod

Here are the uses and health benefits:

1) Fruits are can be used as ruminant feeds.

2) The root decoction is used in hot baths for stomach cancer. I wonder how external application can cure internal disorder.

3) It is a folk remedy for colds, diarrhea, headache, intestinal ailments and stomachache.

4) Prevention of tuberculosis. The leaf alcoholic extract can inhibit Mycobacterium tuberculosis.

5) Fruit decoction is used as central nervous system sedative. Good to take if you are problematic or stress.

6) Leaf infusion is used as laxative. She is suffering from hard bowel movement. I would recommend it to her.

7) Chew the seeds for soar throat. The seeds are hard. You gonna suffer from toothache before relieving the  soar throat.

8) A fruit drink can be made from pulp. I wonder who are doing this kind of preparation. Pulp is difficult to separate from brittle skins.

9) Can be a good non-meat protein source. A fallen ripe pod has 12-18 percent protein content.

10)  The bark is a rich source of gum resin. Slice it and the latex will exude in few minutes.  I often stab acacia tree and watch the latex exudes (it was during my childhood years).

11) The boiled inner bark and fresh leaves are cure for diarrhea and stomachache.

Lanzones Benefits, Nutritional Value and Toxicity

lansones fruit

I used to hate eating lanzones / langsat. Latex keep on sticking on hand and mouth and the seeds taste very bitter. Now, I put a small amount of baby oil on my hands to counteract the stickiness of latex. Then I chew the flesh gently to prevent breaking of the bitter seeds.

I bet this fruit is not suitable for juice and jam processing. The bitter seeds are soft, even a slight pressure is enough to break it. My statement may not be true if someone can invent a technology for pulp extraction without seed breakage or a seedless variety is produced. The Longkong variety is reported to be almost seedless and and the peel has no latex. I hope they can make a real seedless variety like seedless watermelon.

lansones fruit

I cannot find any food use for lansones peel. According to report, it contain approximately six percent lansium acid, a toxic substance applied on arrow tip. Lasium acid can also be found in bark and can kill frogs by stopping heart beat. However, there are no reports about its affect to humans.

Analysis made in India stated that 100 grams edible portion contains the following nutritional information:

Moisture – 86.5 g
Protein – 0.8 g
Carbohydrates – 9.5 g
Fiber – 2.3 g
Calcium – 20.0 mg
Phosphorus – 30.0 mg
Carotene (Vitamin A) – 13.0 I.U.
Thiamine – 89 mcg
Riboflavin – 124 mcg
Ascorbic Acid – 1.0 mg
Phytin – 1.1 mg (dry weight)

Lansones has also the following medicinal uses:

  1. The dried peel is burned to produce an aromatic smells which drives away mosquitoes.
  2. The bark is astringent and that its decoction is used for treatment of dysentery.
  3. Bark powder is used to relieve scorpion sting.
  4. The mixture of powdered seeds and water are used for treatment of intestinal worms.
  5. Febrifuge – Any medicine that lowers body temperature to prevent or alleviate fever.
  6. The resin from bark was prescribed for flatulence (a state of excessive gas in the alimentary canal), for swellings and as an antispasmodic(a drug used to relieve or prevent spasms).
  7. The resin may be useful in the treatment of inflammation and colic (acute abdominal pain) of the gastro-intestinal tract.

Siling Labuyo Benefits, Hot Pepper


For those who have the guts to eat lots of siling labuyo, like Bicolanos. Cheers! Its good for you cause its a good source of vitamins and minerals.

No matter how many times I try, I can’t even chew a single hot pepper.

Here are the list of nutrients that can be found in hot pepper.  Nutrient value per 100g sili.

Nutrient                  Amount
Water                             86.0 g
Protein                          1.9 g
Fat                                  1.9 g
Carbohydrates          9.2 g
Iron                               1.2 mg
Calcium                        14.4 mg
Vitamin A                    700-21600 IU
Vitamin C                     242.0 mg
Energy Value 257.0 kJ

Medicinal properties of hot pepper includes:

  • Ingestion is believed to be wholesome for persons of phlegmatic temperament, being considered stimulating. Fresh chilli is an excellent promoter of ligaments.
  • It is a powerful rubefacient, a medicine for external application that produces redness of the skin. It relieves pain by counterirritant effect.
  • An effective gargle when mixed with vinegar.
  • A warm fomentation of both leaves and fruit is applied for rheumatic pains.
  • Leaves can be used as a dressing for wounds and sores.
  • A strong infusion of the fruit is applied as a lotion for ringworm of the scalp.
  • Cures stomach pain, gout, dyspepsia, and cholera.


Natural Dengue Mosquito Repellant – Another Use of Delectable Atis

madre de cacao

GMA 7 reported, the following plants might be effective in repelling dengue causing mosquitoes. Department of Science and Technology is conducting studies about plants’ potency.

Atis /Sugar Apple

According to BPI, atis is a favorite fruit of the Filipinos. It is very refreshing and may be eaten raw or made into an excellent ice cream. According to Burkill the fermented fruit seems to be used in the West Indies to make a kind of cider.

Sanyal and Ghose reported, the leaves, the unripe fruit, and the seeds (which contain acrid principle) possess vermicidal and insecticidal properties. The crushed seeds, in a paste with water, are applied to the scalp to destroy lice. The same is used as an abortifacient if applied to the uteri in pregnant women. The bruised leaves, with salt, make a good cataplasm to induce suppuration. The fresh leaves crushed between the fingers and applied to the nostrils cut shorts fits and fainting. The ripe fruit, bruised and mixed with salt, is applied as a maturant to malignant tumors to hasten suppuration. The unripe fruit is astringent, and is given in diarrhea, dysentery and atonic dyspepsia.


Citronella oil is popular as a ‘natural’ insect repellent. Its potency have been proven by research. Research also indicates that citronella oil is an effective repellent for body louse and head louse as well as cats.

The dried or fresh leaves of the citronella plant are treated by steam distillation and yield yellow oil with a pleasant, fresh, lemony-green smell. The oil is then mix with other carrier oil. You should experiment to find the formula that works best for you. Apply the repellent to skin every 30 to 60 minutes.

According to US Environmental Protection Agency,citronella oil has little or no toxicity when used as a topical insect repellent, with no reports of adverse effects of concern over a 60 year period. However, Citronella may irritate skin and cause dermatitis in certain individuals. It should not be used on the skin of young children under 3 years old.

Madre de Cacao / Kakawate

madre de cacao

This plant is effective as rat killer and a natural insect repellant. Tree bark is cook with rice and use as a rat bait. The young leaves are pound and mix with water. Leaf mixture work best for farm animals but I don’t think you would try to apply it on your skin.

All the plant mentioned above may be scattered to areas you want to protect against mosquitoes. This method is not yet proven by studies but there will be no harm in trying. Experiment and tell me if its really working.

Mangosteen Uses and Health Benefits


MANGOSTEEN (Garcinia mangostana Linn of the family Gutiiferae) is one of the most delicious and best flavored fruits in the world. It is one tropical fruit that is most ready accepted by the Western. It is a seasonal fruit that has a great export market. The editable portion of the mangosteen fruit is 1/3 of the whole fruit. The aril is about 25-30% of the fruit and contains 19.8% soluble solids, 4.3% reducing sugar, and 17.5% to total sugar. Analysis of the rind indicates that it is rich in pectin.

Uses and Health Benefits

Its composition taken from the 1990 edition of the Food Composition Table prepared by the Food and Nutrition Research Institute is as follows. The pulp, which is very light and soft and has an exquisite flavor, is best eaten fresh, preferably after chilling the fruit.


The pulp and seed, when boiled with sugar, make an excellent preserve or topping for ice cream or sherbet. The seeds have a delicious nutty flavor.

The leaves and bark, claimed to be medicinal, are used as astringent to cure aphtha or thrush. They are also used as a febrifuge or antipyretic while the pericarp is regarded as very effective in curing chronic intestinal catarrh.

The pericarp contains 7-15% tannin and it is used for dyeing. A decoction of the root may be taken to achieve regular menstruation. Leaf infusion is applied to wounds and a decoction of the pericarp may be administered to cure dysentery or simply used as lotion. Dried rind is used as an astringent. The seed
contains about 30% of valuable oil.

Mangosteen can cure diarrhea. Boil the required amount of seeds in two glasses of water for 15 minutes, or until only 1/2 of the liquid is left. Cool and strain. Divide the decoction into four plants. drink one part every 2 to 3 hours. Packed in sterilized bottles. The dosages are: a)adult 4 tsp, b) 7-12 yrs. old 2 tsp, c) 2-6 yrs. old 1 tsp, and d)children 7-12 years, use half of the adult dose.

information was provided by the Department of Agriculture.