Blueberry Bars

This recipe could be modified to use more standard ingredients, but as made, (trial one), it is gluten free, corn free, egg free, dairy free, and incorporates a number of healthy, nontypical ingredients, with some extra protein from almond meal.

Optional but healthy – fruit peel tea – could use boiling water instead.

Step one – make a batch of fruit peel tea – rough draft recipe/directions included towards the end of this document, before the reference section. (Foods & Phytonutrients that might benefit T-cells)

Dried fruit, soak in advance stage, takes the longest.

Add to one cup of the hot tea & let soak for about an hour, stirring occasionally – one cup dried blueberries, one cup almond meal.

Wet ingredients & the egg substitute

Add to one cup of the hot tea in a sauce pan & stir over low heat for a couple minutes – 3 tablespoons Gumbo File, 3 tablespoons Golden Flax meal; then add 1/3 to a 1/2 cup of Coconut oil, stir occasionally as the coconut oil melts and work it into the emulsified Gumbo File mixture; as it is mixed remove from the heat. Stir in 1 cup of coconut sugar or cane sugar, 1-2 teaspoons vanilla, 3 teaspoons lemon juice or apple cider vinegar.

*or you could use 6 tablespoons Golden Flax meal, or 6 tablespoons Gumbo File, however they each have health benefits & slightly different emulsifying power and flavor.

Combining the wet ingredients

Once the dried blueberries and almond meal have absorbed most of the hot liquid, add the emulsified sugar mixture and 3/4 cup applesauce or a milk equivalent would also work. Mix it all together thoroughly.

Dry ingredients – mix and wait to add until the dried fruit is thoroughly soaked and combined with emulsifier.

  • 2 cups Gluten Free Flour mix – corn free – or 2 cups brown rice flour
  • 1/2 cup Tapioca flour/starch (good source of resistant starch once cooked and chilled)
  • 1/2 teaspoon Baking Soda (Baking powder has corn starch so I don’t use it – and that is why there needs to be lemon juice or apple cider vinegar as an acid, to react with the Baking Soda)
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt, rounded

In a large enough bowl, combine the dry and wet ingredients together and stir thoroughly.

Pour the batter, (it should be fairly wet, but not as runny as a pancake batter, more like a wet cookie dough or muffin batter) into an oiled cookie sheet or jelly roll pan – a large flat pan with sides. Bake in a preheated 350’F oven for about 40 minutes. Let cool in the pan and cut into bars. Refrigerate in an airtight container. Resistant starch content is increased once a cooked starch is chilled. It is then still present even if the bars are served at room temperature. For best texture eat within a week or freeze some of the remaining bars.

Made ~ 48 bars, two or three would be a reasonable serving.

Revised recipe if it were more standard ingredients:

Soak 1 cup dried Blueberries and 1 cup Almond Meal in 1 cup of boiling water for about an hour.

Wet ingredients

  • 3 Eggs, whisk/fork mix
  • 1-2 teaspoons Vanilla
  • 1/3-1/2 cup Olive Oil, melted Coconut Oil or melted Butter
  • 1 cup Milk equivalent or Applesauce

Dry ingredients

  • 2 1/2 cups Whole Wheat Flour or your choice
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt, rounded
  • 1 Tablespoon Baking Powder

Mix wet and dry ingredients together, spread into a cookie sheet with sides, or jelly roll pan. Bake in a preheated 350’F oven for approximately 40 minutes. Let cool in the pan, cut into 48 bars, store in air tight container in the refrigerator. It is a moist recipe compared to cookies and wouldn’t keep as long at room temperature. Use within about a week or freeze some to the extra.

Disclaimer: Opinions are my own and the information is provided for educational purposes within the guidelines of fair use. While I am a Registered Dietitian this information is not intended to provide individual health guidance. Please see a health professional for individual health care purposes.

Zinc, cancer, and bitter taste receptors

Take home point – we need the food industry to stop taking bitter tasting, but cancer preventing phytonutrients out of our processed foods. People like bland, but that doesn’t make it good for us.

We also like sweet and protein rich foods. The crispiness on baked goods, chips, or grilled foods is a combination of sugar and protein. AGEs is an acronym for the glycated – sugar added proteins. Within our body they are associated with out of control blood sugar in diabetes and with aging. In our food supply – they taste delicious but may be cancer promoting. Acrylamide is one that has been more researched and some regulations to reduce the content in food have been passed. (10)

Extruded breakfast cereals and snack foods can have an excessive amount due to the high heat of the heated extrusion process – shaping the snack and cooking it at the same time. Both people and animals like this group of glycated proteins – sweetened protein, no wonder people & animals like it. (6) We need both calories and protein to survive, but too much of most things can become a problem.

When starchy foods are cooked at higher heat, sugar and proteins can combine into acrylamide (& other AGEs) which is delicious tasting, yet may be cancer promoting & genotoxic – harmful to our DNA. (5) “Acrylamide is a chemical that naturally forms in starchy food products during high-temperature cooking, including frying, baking, roasting and also industrial processing, at +120°C and low moisture.” (5)

The breakfast cereal industry is working on methods to remove the amino acid most linked to the formation of acrylamide; so that during the high heat processing of extruded grain based foods less acrylamide will be produced. (11) Nutritional flaw in the plan – that would also leave a lower protein breakfast cereal. Your homemade hot oatmeal or oven toasted granola would not have as much acrylamide as an extruded shaped cereal.

Podcast with more info about Advanced Glycation End Products, (AGEs) and aging: Advanced Glycation End Products. Podcast w/ Pankaj Kapahi. “What are advanced glycation end products, and why do they matter for your health?” – humanOS Radio (6)

Amino acids are the smaller units that make protein chains, many can activate bitter taste receptors.

We are still learning about taste receptors. Some amino acids are detected by sweet taste receptors. L-glutamate and l-aspartate, the potentially excitotoxic amino acids, are detected by the umami receptors, savory taste receptors (TAS1R1/TAS1R3). And many amino acids are detected by bitter taste receptors, (TAS2Rs), including “l-leucine, l-isoleucine, l-valine, l-arginine, l-methionine, l-phenylalanine, l-tyrosine, l-tryptophan, and l-histidine, exhibit a bitter taste [16]“. Vitamin B1 and B2 have been evaluated as quite bitter tasting, B3 and B6 somewhat bitter tasting, while the other B vitamins and vitamin A have been evaluated as mild. Vitamin C is sensed as sour. Taste receptors are grouped as sweet, salty, sour (acidic), bitter and umami. (12)

Bitter taste receptors are a group, and are found in various places within the body in addition to the tongue.

The bitter taste receptors are a group of approximately 25 variations (7) which include some that are responsive to a few specific bitter chemicals and others that are activated by many. Four are still unknown regarding the chemicals that activate them. (12)

It has been shown that some TAS2Rs detect only a few bitter molecules, whereas others are broadly tuned to detect numerous bitter compounds [23]. To date, 4 TAS2Rs have been qualified as orphan receptors; that is no bitter compounds that are capable of activating them have been identified.” (12)

Bitter phytonutrients commonly found in many whole food herbs and spices may help prevent cancer, likely because bitter taste receptors are found in many areas of the body in addition to the tongue. On the tongue they are connected to nerves going to be brain and act as their name suggests – taste receptors. In the other locations of the body where they are prevalent they can perform many different actions.

The different types of bitter taste receptors are not all equally found on the tongue, many are found in greater concentration in other areas of the body. Some types may be more prevalent in some areas of the body than others. (7)

Within the intestines bitter taste receptors that are activated by bitter tasting phytonutrients signal our brain that we are satisfied now, we found enough food to eat. They also are involved with reducing insulin resistance leading to more stable blood sugar levels and less risk of glycated hemoglobin, a risk factor measured in diabetes, that is associated with aging and other health problems. Bitter phytonutrients from citrus peel bioflavonoids have been found helpful to reduce Metabolic Syndrome and improve some digestive problems. (Bitter taste receptors post)

Within the kidneys bitter taste receptors help us remove excess calcium from the circulating blood which might help protect against renal disease if there is chronically too much calcium and too little magnesium available. (Kidney Appreciation Day post, see the addition)

Zinc is needed to make Bitter Taste Receptors

Background info included in the last post – we need zinc to make taste receptors for sweet, bitter or protein flavors.

Our taste receptors can also be affected by what our mother ate while she was pregnant with us. What a woman eats regularly while she is pregnant can affect her child’s taste preferences later in life. More calories from fats in mom’s typical prenatal diet can lead to there being more sweet taste receptors on the tongue for baby. “Recent research indicates that the diet of a mother could directly impact the taste buds of her offspring, affecting food preferences.” (4)

We can also adjust our taste preferences by limiting sweet foods in our diet and our taste receptors will become more sensitive to sweet tastes, or by eating more bitter tasting foods we can become more used to the bitter flavors – acquiring a taste preference for some. Too much would signal we are satisfied.

Deficiency of both zinc and bitter taste receptors is associated with breast cancer cells.

Receptors are like specialized machines on the outside of cells which interact with the interior of the cell, telling it what might be going on in the surrounding extracellular fluid – are we hungry or well fed? Do we need to get a jacket because it feels cold? Is there a lack of bitter nutrients and we feel sick so we should forage for that herb that seemed to be so satisfying and helpful the last time I felt this way?

Yet we need adequate zinc in order to be able to make taste receptors. Zinc deficiency is linked to breast cancer. (1) One of the odd places where bitter taste receptors are located is the mammary tissue – milk producing cells within the breasts. It has been found that breast cancer cells have fewer bitter taste receptors on their membrane surface than cells of healthy breast tissue. (2) Zinc deficiency leads to a lack of the mRNA that is needed within a cell for it to make the specific protein that forms a taste or odor receptor. Surface receptors are made within the cell and relocated to the cell membrane.

What does the bitter taste receptor do for the mammary tissue that helps protect it against cancer? They may be promoting anti-inflammatory pathways and chemicals that help identify damaged DNA or cells and remove them safely before they start to grow into a tumorous cell.

Many plant nutrients are found to help protect against cancer, (3), but also, probably not coincidentally, are bitter in taste, so the food industry has been removing them from processed food in order to increase consumer appeal. “Dietary phytonutrients found in vegetables and fruit appear to lower the risk of cancer and cardiovascular disease.” (3)

Protection against low oxygen, hypoxia, and oxidative stress reduction may also be part of the anti-cancer benefit provided by bitter taste receptors.

Retinoic acid, a metabolite of vitamin A caused an increase in the bitter taste receptors on pre-cancerous neuroblastoma (NB) cells. NB cells are immature brain cells that contain cancer stem cells and generally only causes cancer in early infancy and childhood. Having more bitter taste receptors led to fewer tumorous cells forming from the NB cells treated with retinoic acid, and there was also a reduction in the movement of the cells which would help prevent spread of cancer. (7)

The presence of more bitter taste receptors was found to help reduce risk of cancer metastasis, the migration to other areas of the body and invasion of other tissue areas. Increased metastasis/movement of cancer cells may be more of a risk in the presence of low oxygen levels, hypoxia. Hypoxia has been linked to increased movement of cancer cells. (7) (Hypoxia is also a problem in symptomatic COVID19).

Furthermore, expressions levels of HIF-1α-downstream genes were affected, with VEGF and GLUT1 up-regulated under CoCl2-induced hypoxic conditions, and the same genes were down-regulated following over-expression of TAS2R8 and TAS2R10 (Fig 6B). These results suggest that TAS2Rs contribute to the regulation of hypoxia-related gene expression.” (7)

The increase in bitter taste receptors and suppression of metastasis may have been due to a reduction in an enzyme MMP-2 which breaks down extra cellular matrix (the gelatinous fluid, or glycocalyx that surrounds all of our blood vessels and other organs, and fills spaces in between). Increased MMP-2 and less extra cellular matrix protection allows more invasive metastasis of cancer cells. (7)

Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) are a group of 23 enzymes involved in extra cellular matrix and are dependent on adequate zinc availability. They also are involved with “control of expression and activation of chemokines, growth factors, and cellular receptors,” and therefore have a role in normal development, and in inflammatory diseases and cancer. (14)

Zinc has antioxidant properties and deficiency of the trace mineral is associated with increased oxidative stress and decreased MMPs which may increase risk for excess collagen and development of fibrosis – scar tissue like formation in the areas of inflammation. (15)

Within the lungs bitter taste receptors can help thin mucus (extra cellular matrix), cause increased motion of the cilia lining airways to move it up and out of the lungs, through more opened airways – provided we include bitter tasting nutrients in our diet. (Bitter taste receptors post)

Phytonutrients that have been shown to have anti-cancer benefits and activate certain bitter taste receptors include allyl isothiocyanate, (7) , an organosulfur found in mustard, radish, horseradish, wasabi, and other cruciferous vegetables. (13) Quercetin and naringenin, found in citrus peel and other plant foods, have also been found to provide anti-cancer benefits against several types of cancer including NB cells “[24, 26, 27].” (7)

Are AGEs always bad? – confusingly, no. Some may activate, some may inhibit bitter taste receptors.

AGEs may activate or inhibit Bitter taste receptors too, throughout the body, depending on the type of glycated protein (AGE-Advanced Glycation End-Products) which may be why some are aging & cancer promoting but not all, or not always.

AGEs may be cancer promoting in some cases but not others because of their roles as bitter taste receptor (T2R) ligands – some AGEs may activate, while others may inhibit bitter taste receptors -“In this study, we identified AGEs as novel T2R ligands that caused either activation or inhibition of different T2Rs.” (8) “Bitter taste receptors (T2Rs) are expressed in several tissues of the body and are involved in a variety of roles apart from bitter taste perception.” (8)

So the sweetened protein, potentially bitter taste of acrylamide may be inhibiting or possibly activating bitter taste receptors found in different areas of the body in ways that may affect cancer risks.

Coffee, has a varying amount of acrylamide depending on how it is prepared. Overall the beneficial antioxidants and other phytonutrients seem to give an anti-cancer effect to coffee, rather than being cancer promoting due to the acrylamide. The Coffee Acrylamide Apparent Paradox: An Example of Why the Health Impact of a Specific Compound in a Complex Mixture Should Not Be Evaluated in Isolation (9)

Reference List

  1. Kaczmarek K, Jakubowska A, Sukiennicki G, et al. Zinc and breast cancer risk. Hered Cancer Clin Pract. 2012;10(Suppl 4):A6. Published 2012 Dec 10. doi:10.1186/1897-4287-10-S4-A6
  2. Dupre, D.J., Martin, L. and Nachtigal, M. (2017), Expression and Functionality of Bitter Taste Receptors in Ovarian and Prostate Cancer. The FASEB Journal, 31: 992.2-992.2. doi:10.1096/fasebj.31.1_supplement.992.2
  3. Adam Drewnowski, Carmen Gomez-Carneros, Bitter taste, phytonutrients, and the consumer: a review, The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Volume 72, Issue 6, December 2000, Pages 1424–1435,
  4. Mother’s diet may affect child’s taste buds,
  5. Acrylamide,,
  6. Ginny Robards, The Role of Advanced Glycation End Products in Aging and Disease. Podcast with Pankaj Kapahi. Sept 18, 2019,, via Tweet by
  7. Seo Y, Kim YS, Lee KE, Park TH, Kim Y. Anti-cancer stemness and anti-invasive activity of bitter taste receptors, TAS2R8 and TAS2R10, in human neuroblastoma cells. PLoS One. 2017;12(5):e0176851. Published 2017 May 3. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0176851
  8. Jaggupilli A, Howard R, Aluko RE, Chelikani P. Advanced Glycation End-Products Can Activate or Block Bitter Taste Receptors. Nutrients. 2019;11(6):1317. Published 2019 Jun 12. doi:10.3390/nu11061317
  9. Astrid Nehlig and Rodrigo A. Cunha, The Coffee–Acrylamide Apparent Paradox: An Example of Why the Health Impact of a Specific Compound in a Complex Mixture Should Not Be Evaluated in Isolation. Nutrients. 2020 , 12, 3141; doi:10.3390/nu12103141 Published 14 October 2020 via Tweet by
  10. David Acheson of The Acheson Group, FDA Issues Guidance on Reducing Acrylamide. May 31, 2016,,
  11. E. J. M. Konings, P. Ashby, C. G. Hamlet & G. A. K. Thompson (2007) Acrylamide in cereal and cereal products: A review on progress in level reduction, Food Additives & Contaminants, 24:sup1, 47-59, DOI: 10.1080/02652030701242566
  12. Delompré T, Guichard E, Briand L, Salles C. Taste Perception of Nutrients Found in Nutritional Supplements: A Review. Nutrients 2019, 11(9), 2050;
  13. Zhang Y. Allyl isothiocyanate as a cancer chemopreventive phytochemical. Mol Nutr Food Res. 2010;54(1):127-135. doi:10.1002/mnfr.200900323
  14. Xu X, Wang Y, Chen Z, Sternlicht MD, Hidalgo M, Steffensen B. Matrix metalloproteinase-2 contributes to cancer cell migration on collagen. Cancer Res. 2005 Jan 1;65(1):130-6. PMID: 15665288.
  15. Cao, J., Duan, S., Zhang, H. et al. Zinc Deficiency Promoted Fibrosis via ROS and TIMP/MMPs in the Myocardium of Mice. Biol Trace Elem Res196, 145–152 (2020).

Zinc – big news, CoV and other illness related.

Zinc deficiency can cause a lack of taste and smell and the reason zinc effects the presence or absence of bitter taste receptors on the tongue suggests it would also effect the number of bitter taste – or other types of taste receptors – in any location of the body. Zinc is needed to tell the cell’s genes* to make the RNA and proteins needed to form the taste receptors which then can implant at the cell membrane surface – ready to sense a taste of food on the tongue. (4)

*”Zinc-dependent amidohydrolases,” for example, are proteins involved in “DNA replication and repair” and are involved in epigenetic control of gene’s “histone acetylation and methylation,” – turning the genes on or off by having methyl groups added – like putting the cap back on the toothpaste tube – will the gene or won’t it be used to encode a strand of RNA? RNA is then used as a pattern for the cell to make proteins whether bitter taste receptors, or other proteins – whatever the DNA/RNA pattern has encoded for a chain of amino acids to be joined together into a long protein chain. Once the straight chain of protein is made various amino acids may have a bend or an electrically active zone causing the protein to fold into a complex shape – such as a membrane receptor. (See Table 3, 10)

Taste sensations & other symptoms of zinc deficiency in older people:

In older people, for whom zinc deficiency may be an increased risk, loss of taste sensations, or altered taste (metallic or other changes in perception of the taste may be a side effect of prescription medications or other causes) are due to: “drug use (21.7%), zinc deficiency (14.5%) and oral and systemic diseases (7.4% and 6.4%, respectively).”  (5)

Zinc administration improves taste in 50–82% of patients suffering from taste disorders (a common symptom of zinc deficiency). Effects of zinc administration do not appear immediately, and therapy should be continued for at least three months.

Zinc deficiency is known often to accompany severe physical disabilities, liver cirrhosis, chronic hepatitis, chronic inflammatory bowel diseases, type 2 diabetes mellitus, chronic kidney disease, cardiac insufficiency, short stature, and is also more common in the elderly and professional athletes [6,7,8,9,10,11,12,13,14,15].

– Excerpts from an article based on “the Japanese Society of Clinical Nutrition recently issued…Japan’s Practical Guideline for Zinc Deficiency 2018…” which focuses on the role of zinc deficiency in intestinal inflammation of inflammatory bowel disease and the nitrogen metabolic disorder common with liver cirrhosis. (6)

(Kodama, et al., 2020) (6)

Lack of taste sensations from eating that is due to zinc deficiency, and lack of taste receptors on the tongue, can usually be fairly quickly reversed by providing adequate zinc in the diet or by supplementation, (3), possibly a little taste sensation being restored within days of increased zinc intake. How quickly the taste receptors are made may also depend on other individual factors such as protein intake and general health.

Excess copper in the diet may also be a factor in zinc deficiency, because zinc and copper share transport proteins (2) which is how a limited supply of trace minerals is stored in the body. Otherwise they might cause damage due to being electrically active – able to attract or donate electrons; or they are involved in enzyme and signaling roles which might cause too much cellular activity, or the wrong messages. Zinc is involved in the process of apoptosis the immune cell killing and safe removal of infected or damaged cells. (1)

Which taste receptors are formed first and where on the tongue may also vary after zinc intake is increased by diet or supplementation; the sweet and bitter taste receptors may be restored earliest. (3)

Bitter and sweet tastes may work in balance in a healthy diet – bitter taste receptors help regulate appetite and blood sugar levels. “Bitter taste receptors influence glucose homeostasis.” (5) Glucose is blood sugar, bitter taste receptors are involved with reducing insulin resistance and may help prevent Type 2 diabetes and Metabolic Syndrome.

Background info for new readers: the ability to taste sweet and bitter may have impacts on health throughout the body – bitter taste receptors and other types of taste receptors are found in other areas of the body besides the tongue. They sense the environment in the case of sweet or sour – the body wants to have enough blood sugar but not too much, and the same thing with acidity – just the right range of pH is needed for health. If we get too acidic it is more likely to promote cancer. Too alkaline is less likely to occur in typical health scenarios.

Chronic kidney disease may also involve a problem with bitter taste receptors, or lack of them. “Bitter taste receptors could affect kidney function via Ca2+ intake. Alkaloids such as phenylthiocarbamide stimulate these receptors and cause an increase in Ca2+ intake.” (7) Excessive calcium within a brain cell can over-activate it, and even lead to cell death, while in the kidney maybe it would be helping health by removing excess calcium.

Some of our immune cells also may have taste and odor receptors. The taste receptors identified included the types that detect bitter, sweet, and umami (protein flavor). (8) These sensory receptors on a white blood cell (leukocyte) would not be sending nerve signals to the brain in the way taste buds or olfactory sensors in the nose are connected to nerve signals connected to the brain. They might be involved in patrolling our internal environment and detecting if our levels of blood glucose, bitter chemicals and amino acid supply is adequate – or they might be performing some function for us such as modifying the immune cell’s response based on the levels of bitter, sweet, or umami tasting chemicals that were detected in the surrounding fluid filled environment of a blood vessel. Leukocytes are the type of white blood cell that can detect, kill, and remove an infected cell or an infectious pathogen. White blood cells are our front line offensive team against pathogens. (They need magnesium in order to be able to kill the pathogen – but that is a different story.)

Physiology can have many ways to do something, but also tends to stick with the same design – if zinc is needed for cells to make taste receptors on the tongue then it is probable that it also would promote taste receptors in whatever cell types that have taste receptors.

Bitter taste receptors are far more sensitive, 10,000 times more sensitive than sweet, so a tiny amount of a bitter tasting chemical can activate them. Bitter taste receptors lining the intestines will send a satiety, “I’m full now,’ signal to the brain if enough are activated by bitter tasting phytonutrients in the meal or snack. Bitter taste receptors in the lungs if activated by enough bitter tasting phytonutrients (or bitter tasting medications such as quinines perhaps) will cause the lung cells to open the airways wider, increase the production of thin mucus and increase the motion of hair-like cilia lining the airways to move the mucus up and out with a coordinated wave like motion. More info: Bitter taste receptors in the lungs & Hesperidin’s decongestant properties.

This is not done, part one maybe.

Disclaimer: This information is provided for educational purposes within the guidelines of Fair Use. It is not intended to provide individual guidance. Please seek a health care provider for individualized health care guidance.

Reference List

  1. Haase H, Rink L. The immune system and the impact of zinc during aging. Immun Ageing. 2009;6:9. Published 2009 Jun 12. doi:10.1186/1742-4933-6-9 “There are remarkable parallels in the immunological changes during aging and zinc deficiency, including a reduction in the activity of the thymus and thymic hormones, a shift of the T helper cell balance toward T helper type 2 cells, decreased response to vaccination, and impaired functions of innate immune cells. Many studies confirm a decline of zinc levels with age. Most of these studies do not classify the majority of elderly as zinc deficient, but even marginal zinc deprivation can affect immune function.” — “On the cellular level, zinc is essential for proliferation and differentiation, but zinc homeostasis is also involved in signal transduction [5,6] and apoptosis [7]. Cells depend on a regular supply of zinc and make use of a complex homeostatic regulation by many proteins [8], but the plasma pool, which is required for the distribution of zinc, represents less than one percent of the total body content [1]. Despite its important function, the body has only limited zinc stores that are easily depleted and can not compensate longer periods of zinc deficiency. Additionally, during infections pro-inflammatory cytokines mediate changes in hepatic zinc homeostasis, leading to sequestration of zinc into liver cells and subsequently to hypozincemia [9]. Alterations in zinc uptake, retention, sequestration, or secretion can quickly lead to zinc deficiency and affect zinc-dependent functions in virtually all tissues, and in particular in the immune system.
  2. Levenson C.W., Tassabehji N.M. (2007) Role and Regulation of Copper and Zinc Transport Proteins in the Central Nervous System. In: Lajtha A., Reith M.E.A. (eds) Handbook of Neurochemistry and Molecular Neurobiology. Springer, Boston, MA.
  3. Kitagoh H, Tomita H. [Healing process of taste receptor disturbance]. Nihon Jibiinkoka Gakkai Kaiho. 1995 Feb;98(2):267-80. Japanese. doi: 10.3950/jibiinkoka.98.267. PMID: 7707185. Abstract in English, article in Japanese. “Patients with taste receptor disturbance were treated with zinc dosage, […] With respect to differences in the recovery process of the four primary tastes, a tendency for the sweet and bitter taste qualities to recover earlier than the others was observed in the simultaneous improvement type.”
  4. *less zinc, fewer bitter taste receptors Sekine H, Takao K, Yoshinaga K, Kokubun S, Ikeda M. Effects of zinc deficiency and supplementation on gene expression of bitter taste receptors (TAS2Rs) on the tongue in rats. Laryngoscope. 2012 Nov;122(11):2411-7. doi: 10.1002/lary.23378. Epub 2012 Oct 15. PMID: 23070743.
  5. Imoscopi, A., Inelmen, E.M., Sergi, G. et al. Taste loss in the elderly: epidemiology, causes and consequences. Aging Clin Exp Res 24, 570–579 (2012).
  6. Kodama H, Tanaka M, Naito Y, Katayama K, Moriyama M. Japan’s Practical Guidelines for Zinc Deficiency with a Particular Focus on Taste Disorders, Inflammatory Bowel Disease, and Liver Cirrhosis. Int J Mol Sci. 2020;21(8):2941. Published 2020 Apr 22. doi:10.3390/ijms21082941
  7. Liang J, Chen F, Gu F, Liu X, Li F, Du D. Expression and functional activity of bitter taste receptors in primary renal tubular epithelial cells and M-1 cells. Mol Cell Biochem. 2017 Apr;428(1-2):193-202. doi: 10.1007/s11010-016-2929-1. Epub 2017 Feb 24. PMID: 28236092.
  8. Malki A, Fiedler J, Fricke K, Ballweg I, Pfaffl MW, Krautwurst D. Class I odorant receptors, TAS1R and TAS2R taste receptors, are markers for subpopulations of circulating leukocytes. J Leukoc Biol. 2015;97(3):533-545. doi:10.1189/jlb.2A0714-331RR
  9. Wessels, I.; Maywald, M.; Rink, L. Zinc as a Gatekeeper of Immune Function. Nutrients 2017, 9, 1286.
  10. Itika Arora, Manvi Sharma, Liou Y. Sun,Trygve O. Tollefsbol, The Epigenetic Link between Polyphenols, Aging and Age-Related Diseases. Genes 2020, 11(9), 1094;

Covid related references, section to be written

  • ZINC IS KEY TO HCQ PROTOCOL SEPTEMBER 21, 2020, Editorials 360, The group given zinc with hydroxychloroquine had less mortality, discharged sooner, less likely to need a ventilator compared to the group given hydroxychloroquine but no zinc sulfate: “The docs discovered that those that obtained zinc sulfate have been discharged residence extra often and have been much less prone to want a ventilator. General, members of this group had decrease danger of mortality because of the virus and decrease possibilities of needing hospice or the ICU. They concluded, “This examine gives the primary in vivo proof that zinc sulfate together with hydroxychloroquine could play a task in therapeutic administration for COVID-19.”
  • Adam Drewnowski, Carmen Gomez-Carneros, Bitter taste, phytonutrients, and the consumer: a review, The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Volume 72, Issue 6, December 2000, Pages 1424–1435, phenolics, such as quercetin, are the most common bitter compounds in immature apples and other fruit (17).
  • The Cure for Malaria Could be in Your Backyard,, Quinine, which comes from the bark of a cinchona tree, was first isolated as an antimalarial compound in the 1800s, though there is evidence that bark extracts have been used to treat malaria since the 1600s. …native to Peru.
  • Quinine in Tonic Water: What Is It and Is It Safe?,, is still in tonic water, which is consumed around the world as a popular mixer with spirits, such as gin and vodka. It’s a bitter beverage, though some manufacturers have tried to soften the taste a little with added sugars and other flavors.
  • Samer Singh, Rakesh Kumar Singh, Assessing the Role of Zinc in COVID-19 Infections and Mortality: Is Zinc Deficiency a Risk Factor for COVID-19?, medRxiv preprint doi: this version posted June 14, 2020. a CC-BY-ND 4.0 International license “Zinc is essential to good health and immunocompetence. Its deficiency is generally associated with a negative impact on overall health, increased susceptibility to disease, and infections [9-12].” “A negative correlation between the Zinc deficiency prevalence estimate for the countries and the reported cases of COVID-19 was consistently observed at all three time-points analyzed that covered pre infections peak, i.e.,8 April 2020, and post infections peak, i.e., 12 and 26 May 2020 (see Table 2). The Zinc deficiency of the populations also negatively covaried with adverse outcomes (mortality) per million population and the correlation seemed to better with the passage of the current wave of COVID-19 infections.
    • I am not sure about the ‘negative correlation’ if wording issue or if there were less illness with zinc deficiency. Infection causes zinc to be sequestered, so maybe the sicker people get the more zinc is sequestered. I haven’t read the full paper yet.

Covid-19 info page added to a new site

Apologies for not getting more progress done on my book project. I have added a summary page with Covid-19 information and links for more information to a new website,, and a copy to 19 information.

Some of the information is still in research phases, however it is a novel – new virus so everything about the infection and illness and slow recovery or chronic phases is also new – still in research phases. Please read with caution and common sense. Megadoses of foods or supplements of nutrients or phytonutrients can be a health risk and may not be necessary.

As described in the book excerpt in the last post, many phytonutrients are helpful as modulators – helping increase a low response or to reduce an overactive response which means taking more will likely not cause any more of an effect than taking some.

The new website is still in preliminary phases – my goal is to have a site that combines themes from my other sites –

  • is focused on how technology plus human effort could help our planet and ocean health.
  • is focused on the interconnectedness of peace and adequate housing, food, water, and biodiversity, along with connectedness between social groups. Humans are designed for social groups, isolation can be unhealthy.
  • is in a book format with a focus on why policy is important and what might be involved in developing policies that are more likely to be effective, considering human nature – we all have foibles and quirks and some of it is instinctual. Recognizing that our instincts are unspoken, yet real, can help in developing policies that work around some of those human quirks. The blog associated with this site,, is basically a more condensed copy of – my first draft blog – here is where my work tends to start and then gets more organized elsewhere.
  • predated the more detailed book/site.
Graphic, sunrise with a Venn Diagram showing an overlap of "Peace is Happiness" "Peace is a healthy Environment" Peace is Health & Wellness" "Family & Friends" "Sense of Purpose" "Diversity" "Peace"
Peace may require adequate resources, community, and a healthy environment.

The planet is home for all of us, and all of life, without it we have no home.

Peace and love to you all.

Disclaimer: This information is provided for educational purposes within the guidelines of Fair Use. It is not intended to provide individual guidance. Please seek a health care provider for individualized health care guidance.