The Cilantro Gene

The Cilantro Gene
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Why are there such polarizing opinions about the taste of the fresh herb cilantro (also known as coriander leaves)?

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One sign of changing U.S. demographics is that salsa has replaced ketchup as America’s #1 table condiment, one of the popular ingredients of which is cilantro–one of the most polarizing and divisive food ingredients known. Some people love it; some people hate it. What’s interesting is that the lovers and the haters appear to experience the taste differently. Individuals who like cilantro may describe it as fresh, fragrant or citrusy, whereas those who dislike cilantro report that it tastes like soap, mold, dirt, or bugs. I don’t know how people know what bugs taste like, but rarely are polarizing opinions about flavors so extreme. Maybe it’s genetic.

Different ethnic groups do seem to have different rates of cilantro dislike, with Ashkenazi Jews scoring highest on the cilantro hateometer. Another clue came from twin studies, which show that identical twins tend to share cilantro preferences, whereas regular fraternal twins do not have such a strong correlation. Our genetic code is so big, though–containing about three billion letters–that to find some cilantro gene you’d have to analyze the DNA and cilantro tastes of like 10,000 people, and obviously genetic researchers have better things to do–or maybe not.

Here we present the results of a genome-wide association study among 14,000 participants who reported whether cilantro tasted soapy, with replication in a distinct set of 11,000 people who declared whether they liked cilantro or not. And lo and behold, they found a spot on chromosome 11 that seemed to match. What’s there? A gene called OR6A2, which enables us to smell certain chemicals like (E)-2-decenal, a primary constituent of cilantro and also the defensive secretions of stink bugs. So maybe cilantro does taste like bugs! But cilantro lovers may be genetic mutants that have an inability to smell the unpleasant compound.

That may actually be an advantage, though, since cilantro is healthy stuff. In fact that’s the justification to do these kinds of studies–to see why some people don’t like the taste of healthy foods.

Are the cilantro haters really missing out on much, though? Mother nature has been described as the oldest and most comprehensive pharmacy of all time, and cilantro, called coriander around most of the world, is one of nature’s oldest herbal prescriptions, credited with anti-microbial, anti-oxidant, anti-diabetic, anti-anxiety, anti-epilepsy, etc., etc., properties. But these are all from preclinical studies, meaning on cells in a test tube or lab rats, studies like the anti-despair activity of cilantro in mice, testing animals placed in a despair apparatus.

Finally, though, a human study, on the anti-arthritis potential of cilantro. There was a study performed in Germany of a lotion made out of cilantro seeds, showing it could decrease the redness of a sunburn, showing it had some anti-inflammatory effects, though not as much as an over-the-counter steroid cream, hydrocortisone, or a prescription- strength steroid cream. Well, if the cilantro plant is anti-inflammatory, let’s give it to some people with osteoarthritis and see if it helps. They gave them about 20 sprigs of cilantro daily for two months, and reported a significant drop in ESR in the cilantro group, a nonspecific indicator of inflammation. How did the patients do clinically, though? They didn’t say, but did report a rather remarkable decrease in uric acid levels–a 50% drop, suggesting that huge amounts of cilantro may be useful for those suffering from a different arthritis, called gout.

To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video. This is just an approximation of the audio contributed by Katie Schloer.

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Images thanks to Angela Redmon via Flickr and Psylab.

One sign of changing U.S. demographics is that salsa has replaced ketchup as America’s #1 table condiment, one of the popular ingredients of which is cilantro–one of the most polarizing and divisive food ingredients known. Some people love it; some people hate it. What’s interesting is that the lovers and the haters appear to experience the taste differently. Individuals who like cilantro may describe it as fresh, fragrant or citrusy, whereas those who dislike cilantro report that it tastes like soap, mold, dirt, or bugs. I don’t know how people know what bugs taste like, but rarely are polarizing opinions about flavors so extreme. Maybe it’s genetic.

Different ethnic groups do seem to have different rates of cilantro dislike, with Ashkenazi Jews scoring highest on the cilantro hateometer. Another clue came from twin studies, which show that identical twins tend to share cilantro preferences, whereas regular fraternal twins do not have such a strong correlation. Our genetic code is so big, though–containing about three billion letters–that to find some cilantro gene you’d have to analyze the DNA and cilantro tastes of like 10,000 people, and obviously genetic researchers have better things to do–or maybe not.

Here we present the results of a genome-wide association study among 14,000 participants who reported whether cilantro tasted soapy, with replication in a distinct set of 11,000 people who declared whether they liked cilantro or not. And lo and behold, they found a spot on chromosome 11 that seemed to match. What’s there? A gene called OR6A2, which enables us to smell certain chemicals like (E)-2-decenal, a primary constituent of cilantro and also the defensive secretions of stink bugs. So maybe cilantro does taste like bugs! But cilantro lovers may be genetic mutants that have an inability to smell the unpleasant compound.

That may actually be an advantage, though, since cilantro is healthy stuff. In fact that’s the justification to do these kinds of studies–to see why some people don’t like the taste of healthy foods.

Are the cilantro haters really missing out on much, though? Mother nature has been described as the oldest and most comprehensive pharmacy of all time, and cilantro, called coriander around most of the world, is one of nature’s oldest herbal prescriptions, credited with anti-microbial, anti-oxidant, anti-diabetic, anti-anxiety, anti-epilepsy, etc., etc., properties. But these are all from preclinical studies, meaning on cells in a test tube or lab rats, studies like the anti-despair activity of cilantro in mice, testing animals placed in a despair apparatus.

Finally, though, a human study, on the anti-arthritis potential of cilantro. There was a study performed in Germany of a lotion made out of cilantro seeds, showing it could decrease the redness of a sunburn, showing it had some anti-inflammatory effects, though not as much as an over-the-counter steroid cream, hydrocortisone, or a prescription- strength steroid cream. Well, if the cilantro plant is anti-inflammatory, let’s give it to some people with osteoarthritis and see if it helps. They gave them about 20 sprigs of cilantro daily for two months, and reported a significant drop in ESR in the cilantro group, a nonspecific indicator of inflammation. How did the patients do clinically, though? They didn’t say, but did report a rather remarkable decrease in uric acid levels–a 50% drop, suggesting that huge amounts of cilantro may be useful for those suffering from a different arthritis, called gout.

To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video. This is just an approximation of the audio contributed by Katie Schloer.

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Images thanks to Angela Redmon via Flickr and Psylab.

Doctor's Note

This reminds me of the video Pretty in Pee-nk about the phenomenon of “beeturia,” pink urine after beet consumption, seen in some people.

The flavor compound in tarragon may not be as benign in large doses. See The Safety of Tarragon.

For those who don’t mind the taste of bugs, I have some nutritional info: Good Grub: The Healthiest Meat and Bug Appétit: Barriers to Entomophagy.

As an Ashkenazim myself, I’m excited to have narrowly escaped a cilantro-less existence!

If you haven’t yet, you can subscribe to my videos for free by clicking here.

164 responses to “The Cilantro Gene

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  1. Off Topic – I’m embarsassed to mention this, but I hope I’m amongst friends. I consume about 400gms of beans per day (soya, black beans, red kidney beans, and also chickpeas and lentils). I’ve been a vegan for less than a year, but I’ve noticed a considerable increase in the production of love-puffs generated throughout the day. I’ve tried soaking the beans in baking soda prior to cooking, but this has not worked. I cook with a teaspon of ginger, this hasn’t worked, neither has fennel seeds. Can any of you recommend a product that could help alleviate my symptons (without reducing bean consumption) as I thought my symptons would decrease with time (8 months vegan now), but if anything they have increased. My apologies in advance for mentioning this off topic, but I’m guessing I’m not the only one in this position.

    Thanks

      1. Yes – just read it again – I would rather avoid medication, I think I will try ?alpha-galactosidase as it doesn’t appear doesn’t appear to have any side affects (I’m not diabetic) – a natural source of it appears to be yeast – does anyone know if that applies to all types of yeast?

    1. Instead of cooking with the fennel, try toasting it with some dill, cumin, and coriander and nibble the mix after eating. It helps my digestion and freshens my breath. Also, a bit of asafetida (found at Indian markets) in your cooking may help, particularly with lentils. And I know it sounds odd, but try eating sprouted lentils, they really helped my gut adjust to eating beans (constantly). I know it may be imaginary on my part, but my flatulence really decreased after I started nibbling on them every week.

        1. How did you go?

          All that stuff you describe 2tsaybow is often in indian cooking interestingly enough and used together I think. Try different cuisines veganchrisuk for a while and see how you feel?

      1. Had you told me that before I discovered your profession was the third, (possibly second) leading cause of death across the pond I may well have believed you…………. :-)

            1. Those guys weren’t around when I needed a valve job, and not having read nutrition facts I got a surgeon. That was 14 years ago. Next time I’m sure I can find an herb. I’ll ask Mercola

    2. Try chewing thoroughly. Actually better to eat whole beans because you have to chew them than to eat pureed beans, like humus. I always doubted whether this could help, but I find it does.

    3. I agree it tends to get better with time (personally and professionally speaking) but there are other things that might be contributing if your symptoms have been increasing rather than getting better… Maybe something else you’re eating along with the beans, like onions, broccoli, or more wheat products? Some people are sensitive to those foods and have trouble breaking them down. Just a thought!

      1. Yes – that’s certainly part of the reason – I eat one red onion, 2-3 cloves of garlic, at least 7 broccoli florets, about 10 brussel sprouts minimum, a handful of nuts (peanuts/walnuts/pecans), 100gms each of spinach/kale each day – all goes into the pressure cooker with the other ingredients…..also, dried chilli seeds, Italian herbs and other spices.

        1. veganchrisuk: Dang. Sure sounds healthy to me!

          I think you have gotten some great replies/ideas so far. One idea I had was to focus only on small beans for a while. I’ve heard that say lentils can create less of a whirlwind. So, my idea is not to cut down on bean volume (although as one person suggested, ***maybe*** that is a good idea???? – hard to believe given the big benefits we know come from beans), but to change up the bean type for a while just to see if that makes a difference.

          I’m not personally a fan of the standard say, red lentil. I hate the mushy texture. But I’ve become a big fan lately of the black beluga lentils. They come out as just tiny little beans with a wonderful mouth-feel (in my opinion). The green french lentils are similar in texture, just happen to be green. But I like the black ones because I think they may have that stuff that is good for the eyes. (I can’t remember the details. It starts with an “a” I think and is impossible for me to pronounce or spell. It’s in one of the NutritionFacts videos. As you can see, I could never be Nutrition Director. ;-O )

          That’s one idea. Another idea I have may be something I am completely making up,. but here you go: try using a slow cooker instead of a pressure cooker. I’m personally a big, huge fan of pressure cooking. But I think I remember reading somewhere that you might get better body results post-eating beans if you slow cook them instead.

          Finally, I suggest trying multiple ideas, not just one. In other words, maybe your body is super-sensitive to beans. So, while soaking beans in baking soda water may be plenty sufficient for most people, you may have to implement several ideas before you find a combination that is strong enough to fully get rid of the starches that cause gas and thus will work for you. I don’t know if this last idea has any scientific validity. But it seems worth a shot since you are committed to eating such healthy foods and yet quite understandably, would rather not have the world know about it. :-)

          Good luck! If you find a combination that works for you, please let us know. I’m sure other people would benefit.

          1. I eat the red lentils, as they were shown to be the most nutrutious, taste/texture or aesthetics are not something I take into account, I just try to consume as many nutrutious antioxidant rich foods/drinks as my body will allow in a given day.

            Re the slow cooker – I did buy one, but I returned it, just tooooo slow a cooker for me (I know the clues in the name).

            I’ve consumed less beans today and supplemented brown rice – there was an almost instantaneous effect whereby I estimate a reduction from a category F5 to an F3 on the Fujita scale – maybe that should be a reduction from a B5 to a B3 on the Beaneater scale…… :-)

            1. http://www.rebeccawood.com/recipes/beans-legumes-dried/ Add seasonings to aid digestibility. Cook beans until softened and then add 1 teaspoon salt per cup of dry beans. The herbs asafetida, cumin, epazote, fennel, ginger, and winter savory enhance bean digestion. I also add a 2-inch strip of the seaweed kombu per cup of dry beans; a natural source of glutamic acid, kombu tenderizes, enhances flavor and adds invaluable vitamins, minerals, and trace minerals.

            1. Harriet Sugar Miller: re: “I’ve read that slow-cooking does not destroy some of the harmful lectins–the ones in kidney beans, for example.”

              Huh. I’ve never heard that. I’m certainly no expert, but I wouldn’t be surprised if low-temperature cooking destroyed less lectins compared to high temperature cooking. The question for me would be whether the difference is significant or not. And by significant, I mean : whether the lectins that are left in slow cooked beans cause any harm to a human. I would be surprised if slow cooked beans were really (as in real life, full human studies) less healthy than higher temp cooked beans. It seems to me that the opposite would be true since I’ve heard that high pressure cooked beans might have a bigger effect glycemic-index wise.

              I’ve never had reason to fear lectins personally. The following Plant Positive video doesn’t address slow vs fast cooked beans, but the information about lectins I think helps answer my questions about whether the lectins in slow cooked beans would be something to worry about:
              http://plantpositive.com/blog/2012/3/24/tpns-24-in-defense-of-beans.html

              This is what I mean: “On page 91 of The Paleo Diet, Loren Cordain tries to blame beans for rheumatoid arthritis because of their lectins.

              Here is the paper he published to make the same point.

              Now if you are really concerned about lectins, you can read this helpful blog post on the subject. The blogger gives us a particularly nice little quote I included here.

              If Cordain is right that beans cause rheumatoid arthritis, you might expect it would be easy to find epidemiological evidence of this since some countries eat so many beans. These would be poor countries. Unfortunately for Cordain, the parts of the world where bean consumption is highest have the lowest rates of rheumatoid arthritis.”

              Here is another Plant Positive video that addresses lectins:
              http://plantpositive.com/blog/2012/3/24/tpns-22-23-thin-gruel-on-grains.html

              And a quote of interest:

              “Cordain actually published an article called “Whole Wheat Heart Attack.” Haven’t you heard that whole wheat causes heart disease?

              Probably not. His idea is based on the hypothesis that lectins in grains hurt your arteries, but only fellow Paleo promoter Staffan Lindeberg will join him out on this limb.

              Search “whole wheat atherosclerosis” and with the exception of Cordain’s article, it looks like it’s a rather positive story for whole wheat. That last one found no relationship between whole grains and inflammation. Notice it appears no one has cited Cordain’s article. Why won’t anyone buy into his hypothesis?

              Probably because there is a consistent inverse association between whole grains and heart disease, as stated in this study of studies.

              Actually, whole grains seem to lower your LDL cholesterol.”

              ———-
              Thanks for your post. It is interesting to know that lectins might be yet one more difference between slow vs fast cooking.

                1. For the info on cooking kidney beans, see page 254/phytohaemagglutinin (PHA) here:

                  http://www.fda.gov/downloads/Food/FoodborneIllnessContaminants/UCM297627.pdf

                  According to Dr. George Grant, University of Aberdeen, PHA can also cause bacterial overgrowth of the small intestine.

                  Here are dietitians Brenda Davis and Vesanto Melina (authors of “Becoming Vegan”) with advice on how to cook beans: http://zesterdaily.com/cooking/healthy-way-good-fortune-new-years/

                  1. I meant to also say: The information on cooking kidney beans is very interesting. I haven’t heard of this before and wonder how much of a problem it really is. But it sounds like a good idea to at least be aware of the potential problem. So, thanks again!

                1. Wilma: I don’t think it is the lectins that are good for you. It’s just that with normal cooking, lectins usually aren’t something to worry about. Here’s what Dr. Greger says:

                  “Modern paleo advocates…argue that lectins naturally present in these starchy foods are harmful to human health. Consuming too many lectins can cause significant gastrointestinal distress. However, because legumes and grains are almost always consumed in a cooked form—and lectins are destroyed during cooking—eating beans and grains doesn’t result in lectin overload. Sprouting also reduces lectin levels in plants, although not as effectively as cooking. Generally, pea sprouts, lentil sprouts, and mung bean sprouts are safe to consume, as are sprouted grains, which are naturally low in lectins. Most larger legumes contain higher amounts and should be cooked.”
                  from: http://nutritionfacts.org/2014/09/23/will-the-real-paleo-diet-please-stand-up/

                  1. I meant to add: You may be thinking of phytates, which are often demonized by paleo/Westin Price advocates, but which science shows are probably good for us.
                    http://nutritionfacts.org/?s=phytates

                    (re: “wackos” Let’s not do any name calling. It’s just not necessary and actually is against the rules of this site. Thanks!)

                    1. You are correct, I was thinking of phytates and truthfully I don’t know how they differ from lectins. Dr. McDougall says: “Phytic acid actually has many beneficial health effects—you won’t want it out of your diet. It acts as a powerful antioxidant and has been shown to reduce blood sugar, insulin, cholesterol and triglycerides.14
                      Phytic acid is linked to a reduction in heart disease, diabetes, obesity, and other chronic diseases in people.”
                      13) Slavin JL, Martini MC, Jacobs DR Jr, Marquart L. Plausible mechanisms for the protectiveness of whole grains.
                      Am J Clin Nutr. 1999 Sep;70(3 Suppl):459S-463S. Review.
                      14) Slavin J. Why whole grains are protective: biological mechanisms. Proc Nutr Soc. 2003 Feb;62(1):129-34.

                      Sorry about the wacko comment, I stand corrected.

    4. There’s a spice that can be bought at Indian markets called Asfetida that you put just a pinch in with the beans while they’re cooking and it helps with your issue.

        1. Asafoetida stinks to high heaven. It smells like a man-fart! In other countries, it’s name translates to devil’s dung. I bought some once and it stunk up the kitchen so bad – even while it was stored in a sealed plastic bag in the cupboard! This probably “works” because you burn out your fart sensors in your nose by smelling asafoetida all day, so you can’t smell your own farts anymore.

          1. ReluctantVegan: Very interesting reaction. I bought some asafoetida to use in some veggie burgers some time ago. I thought the smell was a pleasant, onion-y smell.

            It’s so interesting how differently humans react to the same food.

    5. 400grams of legumes may simply be too much. I assume you mean dry weight. That is 1400kcals and 100g of protein. Do you believe that a ton of protein will turn you into the hulk? It’s that life stock supporting myth that many people still believe in, after changing to a plant based diet.

      I have found that legumes are best combined with at least 50% rice, but if i were in need of 2800kcals and had nothing but rice and lentils, i would rather eat 75% rice and 25% legumes.

      Do you think the protein is satiating? I found that brown rice, unlike white rice, is as satiating as lentils, so the ratio of rice to lentils is irrelevant in that regard.

      I have found that brown rice with paradina lentis, both cooked for 25 mins, is considerably more easy on digestion than a meal with comparable amounts of any other legume i have tried. I have since drastically reduced bean consumption and stick to lentils.

      I am from europe and i believe that lentils are a traditional food in my genetic line, but other beans are not, if that matters at all.

      Okay, the argument can be made that red lentis and white rice would be even more easy to digest, but i reject this degree of processing, because it is severly messing with my blood sugar on most days.

      My past experience with beans is that i would often undercook them, which would drastically increase climate destabilisation.

      As a former nut lover, i like al dente legumes, but al dente does not work well with beans that i have tested. With paradina lentils it’s no problem.

      Generally much farting comes from food combining.

      Brown rice and lentis go well together, but white rice and beans not so much, they are too different in terms of what efforts it takes to deal with them.

      My memory is not good enough to give accurate examples of bad food combining from the past but i can give an example of good food combining.

      For the whole winter i was beginning the day with one or two meals of 3 red’n’yellow apples or sometimes bananas, at noon i eat brown rice with paradina lentils (my idea of what a satiating portion is has come down to 150g), 3 hours later i eat 400g cooked vegetables, perhaps with 10g of flax seed or 10g of coconut meat.

      I found that adding something like 40 grams of ground flax seeds to a rice and legume meal would drastically sabotage digestion.

      However i enjoy 4 or 5 walnuts along with such a meal.

      Starting the day with low GI raw meals like 3 apples per meal is ideal for weigh loss, because burning fat is optimized in the night and until noon or until interrupted by large portions of low GI or small portions of high GI foods.

      While my stool is rather out of shape and a bit soggy, my digestion has improved from this steady routine, which shows in how i have less hunger and cravings, feel less concerned with food, feel clean inside, when waking up in the morning and never experience bloating.

      Gut flora needs a long time to adapt and consistent habits help a lot with creating a stable fauna.

      1. No, 400gms is the cooked weight, so you can roughly reduce the protein content down by half. As for the comment re brown rice, this very evening I decided to eat 400gm of brown rice with blueberries and cinammon, something I haven’t eaten for a while. I’ve got a fancy Japanese Zojurushi rice cooker that makes Gaba brown rice. When I started eating, my stomach was churning over and I was very bloated with wind, but within a few minutes these feelings reduced, and so did my air pollution – how strange and what a coincidence that you mentioned it.

        I think you may be right, I’d like to consider reducing my bean intake, or just add more rice – unfortunately I’ve got 25KG of soya beans on the way to me this week that I’ve already paid for….

        1. You can make your own soy milk (I’m hoping they are organic and not gmo). Also they will keep for a long long time.

      2. HOLEY MOLEY – WOULD NOT LIFE BE A LOT EASIER IF YOU CHUCKED A T-BONE STEAK ON THE BARBIE WITH A TOSSED SALAD AND A BAKED SPUD – THIS IS NOTHING SHORT OF INSANITY – PSYC MD ..INVESTIGATE !!! THIS

    6. I took a blood test to find what foods I am intolerant to, not allergic, just intolerant. One of the foods was wheat. I took 90% of the wheat I eat out of my diet, No problem with “love poofs”.

      1. It is a good thing you caught on to that. Most people who have an intolerance have no idea that they exist and there are so many signs and symptoms like digestive tract distress, itchy skin, and headaches. It’s always a good idea to keep track of foods that can trigger discomfort with a food journal. That way you can pinpoint possible issues!

    7. Hi veganchrisuk,
      Do you take any probiotics? They may be able to help, and here’s a brief explanation of why: Most people do adapt to eating beans over time, but there are variations in how well someone’s body will turn on (upregulate) the production of the enzyme needed to digest the complex carbohydrates in beans. Also, some of these carbohydrates are attached to proteins (glycoproteins) and fats (glycolipids), making it even harder for the body to break them down. The undigested components make their way to the intestines, where bacteria ferment them, and produce the dreaded gas.

      So, here’s where variations in producing certain digestive enzymes comes into play. The enzyme needed to break down some of these stubborn little molecules is alpha-galactosidase, and it is what we call “inducible.” Inducible means it isn’t produced in very large quantities if you don’t eat a lot of beans. However, over time, as you eat beans, the body will turn up the production of the enzyme. Unfortunately, for some people, it’s easy to “out eat” the body’s ability to produce enough alpha-galactosidase to handle the load. Chalk it up to genetics. Some people just have a better ability to produce this enzyme when they present the body with a load of tough-to-digest components found in beans.

      The recommendation to chew your beans very thoroughly is a great one, because some alpha-galactosidase is produced in saliva. The pancreas also produces some, but of course, there isn’t much you can do to spur your pancreas to make this enzyme beyond what it’s genetically capable of. This is where probiotics come in.

      Some bacteria can produce alpha-galactosidase to augment what your body is producing. This means that the tough-to-digest carbs will be more likely to be digested, instead of fermented. Beano operates on a similar principle – it provides extra alpha-galactosidase.

      For probiotics, the strain of bacteria with the most evidence for helping with alpha-galactosidase production is Lactobacillus fermentum. You can find products on Amazon that have this probiotic strain, though be sure you read each label carefully; I have found that a search for this term will pull up some product results that do NOT have this particular bacteria in them. Also, I have found a couple of products that have the word “gas” in the supplement name (yep, they exist), and these seem to either contain L. fermentum, or other species that, anecdotally at least, may help cut down on gas production related to eating beans. Good luck!

      1. Hi Susan

        Thankyou very much for taking the time to answer in such detail. I was very much trying to avoid taking any supplements – I read somewhere today that yeast provides alpha-galactosidase, can you confirm this, and if so which variety……….

        1. Hi veganchrisuk,

          There is a non-pathogenic yeast strain (Saccharomyces boulardii), which a 1996 study found increased enzyme activity of lactase, alpha-glucosidase, and alkaline phosphatase in the intestinal tract of healthy human volunteers. Non-pathogenic means “non-disease-causing” in healthy individuals. S. boulardii is readily available in supplemental form, but that means you’d need to take a dietary supplement, which you’ve indicated isn’t an option for you.

          I am not aware of any dietary form of yeast (such as nutritional yeast
          or brewer’s yeast) that would provide any measurable amount of
          alpha-galactosidase activity in the human body. If I can think of anything else that may help, without the need to take a dietary supplement, I will certainly let you know!

      1. Hi Marlon – I had considered the evening meal option – with regard to the soaking of the beans, maybe I should start throwing away the water they are soaked in rather than using it in the cooking process. Most “experts” advise that you do this, but I think it is such a waste to pour away all those antioxidants and nutrutents…. :-(

          1. There is – if you do not soak them they take 40-45mins to cook – if you soak them and use the same or clean water then they only take 5-10 mins to cook (less energy used, reduction of cost so better for the environment) – but from a strictly wind generating perspective I will experiment and see if the extra soaking/cooking in clean water helps……

    8. I’m not sure, but to me 400 grams of beans sounds like a lot – almost a pound. So, maybe back off on the beans until you can find an amount that doesn’t cause you problems. (I believe it is Jack Norris, RD, who noted that as long as you stick to a variety of whole foods and eat enough calories, you will eat enough of every amino acid to get all the protein you need). Another possible factor might be swallowing air, which contributes to gas accumulation in the GI tract. This is common with rushed eating and gulping liquids.

        1. Protein is in almost everything. I’m a triathlete, sometimes training 2-3 times per day, and I don’t worry too much about protein. Do you have any problems with soymilk? I try to limit myself to 5 servings (of total soy( per day, but it is so much higher than almond or rice milk, which have almost no protein. I also eat grains, which are high in protein (bread, pancakes,etc. White rice has less protein than brown, but still has 7%). You may find that lentils and/or tofu are easier to digest. When I started with tofu, I started with 1/2 serving and gradually increased it.
          When you are talking about getting enough protein, it really means you have to get enough calories. If you get enough calories and stick to mostly whole foods, you will get enough protein. (This from RD Jeff Novick, but you may wish to consult an athletic-specialized vegan RD for an opinion on nutrition for your sport (powerlifting vs. running). You may like the website/book The No Meat Athlete. I have another book: Vegan Power, but I haven’t read it…its on my stack of must-reads. I hope you find that helpful!

      1. Less than a year ago, almost every meal I ate had a mother and a father – it’s going to take a while before I can accept comments like this. You may be right, who know’s, but how can you be so sure, my body may be saying go back to eating meat and fish, or eat more nuts and seeds….

    9. I don’t know your diet but I know that being vegan doesn’t mean that the diet is healthy. Soluble fibre (probiotic) is what feeds the beneficial gut bacteria and may help crowd out methane producing bacteria. Increasing green leafies has been proven to do more for improvement of gut flora than eating yogurt. Pleas look into recommended amounts. I believe that 3 cooked cups per day is recommended. That would be about 4-5 bunches of spinach. An amount most would find ridiculous. An entire prewashed bag of lettuce cooked down probably amounts to about half a cup cooked. Not much and it’s claimed as 3 servings.

      1. 100gms of kale/100gms of spinach minimum per day – I now buy a 450gm bag of spinach which I make last for three days so on average it’s about 150gms of spinach per day now……surely that’s enough.

    10. I have recently tried lacto fermentation of pressure cooked beans. After 2-3 days of fermentation I freeze them for future use. GI gas production has been largely eliminated.
      I also have made sauerkraut and include it in salads. And made soy milk kefir to drink once daily.
      The different probiotics reduce gas an aid digestion.

      1. Thanks for the info – I have to admit that I had to look up lacto fermentation as I had never heard of it – looks like a very good idea that I will be experimenting with.

        I also cook and freeze my beans, then add the frozen beans to my meals and cook in the pressure cooker for 1 minute.

        Do you re-cook your beans after fermentation or do you eat them as they are from the fridge – I’m guessing they do not need to be re-heated due to the salt solution….

    11. Have you tried soaking in plain fresh water overnight or for at least 8 hours? I noticed that when the beans are soaked for at least 8 hours a film appears on top of the water. I believe this is the release of the chemical that makes them gassy. Before cooking rinse one more time really well, then place beans in a pot with the appropriate amount of fresh cool water. You can add a piece of kombu to the pot while cooking. Kombu helps to tenderize the beans and also adds minerals. I remove the kombu after cooking but you can eat it if you like. Hope this helps good luck!

      1. Scientific proof and studies that have professional looked at this? I yet to find anything credible, but would
        welcome reading anything you provide.

        1. This may seem a little “off topic,” but research does show that cilantro can bind and remove mercury from aqueous environments. That does not mean aqueous environments in the body. It refers to removal from the environment, in a way that suggests it may be useful for environmental remediation purposes (I was an environmental engineer in a former life :-). One study from 2005: “Removal and preconcentration of inorganic and methyl mercury from
          aqueous media using a sorbent prepared from the plant Coriandrum sativum.” (J Hazard Mater. 2005;118(1-3):133-9).

          From these findings (and from other research as well), unscrupulous medical practitioners made the leap to, “use cilantro to detox the body from heavy metals.” I’ve not seen any good research to support this.

          I have come across one rat study showing that cilantro seeds (coriander) alleviate “lead-induced oxidative stress” in the rats’ brains. But humans aren’t rats, and the research “trashbin of history” is rife with over-enthusiasm about animal study results that never panned out in humans. And, who knows, maybe it’s the fact that cilantro/coriander is an excellent antioxidant source and contains other potent phyto-nutrients (beyond antioxidants). That may be the reason coriander can alleviate oxidative stress in the brain (and body).

          It does point to the fact that active components of cilantro/coriander may cross the blood brain barrier in humans. Maybe the nightmares are nothing to do with toxins, but it is simply some bioactive constituent of cliantro that doesn’t agree with your brain chemistry!

          I’m with Val… I love cilantro too and eat it often. I plan to continue to do so. Perhaps AnnWezz, you’ll stick to daytime cilantro consumption only. I do think it’s smart to stick to locally grown cilantro if possible, or at least grown in the US. There are regulations that would make it less likely (though not impossible) that cilantro grown here has been grown in heavy-metal contaminated soils. As this study out of Iran (http://tinyurl.com/opdhbfd) shows, if the soils are contaminated, the cilantro will likely be as well.

        2. I dont have one but you may find some if you look at Andrew Cutler PHD chemist work and probably at Dr Klinghardt but i dont like Klinghardt method because it is not very much science based like Cutler~

    1. Yeah, I’ve also heard and read that cilantro “pulls heavy metals out of our bloodstream”…but as far as foolproof data that supports it? I love cilantro anyway…I eat it all the time…have not had much luck GROWING it but hell, it’s a GREEN herb…so it’s gotta be beneficial!

  2. This anti despair activity sounds interesting. When I’m coming down from feeling up/normal I tend to switch my focus to comedy.
    Probably instinctively to keep the misery away as long as possible, a fight against the inevitable probably and a pretty exhausting one at that actually.

    First hit to down was a very tiring session at my psychiatrist 3 weeks back, anger and other behh, comedy comedy comedy, till that stops working.
    Then it only takes the slightest of pushes. And yesterday that happened when my dentist brought up carnival and how she couldn’t join this year.
    That make me think back, of how long ago has it actually been since the last few times I enjoyed an evening out with my girlfriend.
    And that was the push into the dark pit, unrecoverable darkness.

    I’m so very tired, so incredibly tired, it will just never stop will it.
    Well today will be the first fight my way back routine, egg timer on 20 minutes and just will myself up to do an exercise till my legs can’t carry me anymore. Goddamn it.

    If there is anyone with more on anti despair I’m all ears and would be grateful, seems a temporary thing though in my experience.

    1. Having issues with depression at various times in my life I can tell you one thing….that mentally…once you give into negative thoughts…you are digging a hole that you will HAVE to eventually dig yourself out of…one step or claw at a time.

      In my part of the world…where the sun still shines…women are notorious for wanting men to want something maybe they don’t really need.

      The price of freedom is really….eternal vigilance….meaning that you have to stay on top of things for the most part….lest some lead you astray.

      The clue to happiness is probably realizing that you need to allow yourself to experience the joys of life DIRECTLY without intermediaries.

      To paraphrase a saying….”men need women like a bicycle needs a fish”?

      So now…if you aren’t totally confused…you’ve probably seen the light? LOL

      1. I’ve lived in similar conditions as the monkeys have in the link for 3 years, and I’m showing the same behavior.
        A good week is when I get to see a few friendly faces at my dentist or supermarket. Even if I do encounter kindness I don’t know how to interact with it anymore. If I would be offered a talk over a coffee at lunch the next day I’d most likely be unable to sleep because I’d feel to exited. You talk women, but can you imagine even the thought of a sexual encounter would do to me? That whole dimension of inter-human relations is just gone, all I have left are the memories of my former girlfriend 5 years separated now. I can probably count myself lucky that I have only the fondest of memories of her, and every time I think of her in any way I can still feel her warmth. Any new emotion in this regard to me is lacklustre in comparison. All very troubling, a bit beyond a mere mild depression.

        1. “That whole dimension of inter-human relations is just gone, all I have left are the memories of my former girlfriend 5 years separated now. And I can probably even count myself lucky that I have only very fond memories of her, when I think of her in any way I can still feel her warmth.”

          Shouldn’t you just let go all that? :)

          The reason of suffering is clinging. Is not what happened to you what makes you feel bad (in that situation in your life and any other), but the fact that you keep holding it.

          This is a complex topic and we would need a lot of time, but I’ll try to go fast to the basics.

          As Lee Smolin (the theoretical physicist) explains the universe is not made of things, just processes. Everything is a process.

          Which means everything is in constant flux, so it is impermanent — Inevitably, trying to hold to anything will make you feel bad, because it will change no matter what. Yourself, every person you know, every situation in your life, perhaps a fleeting moment of happiness, and the bad moments too, all will pass away.

          We’ll experience everything that is inconstant, as stressful. Trying to hold to it, to hope for permanence where there is none, will only lead to unhappiness.

          Only by letting go, to see things for what they are (just processes) and observe it from a neutral viewpoint as much as possible you’ll gain detachment and be free of them. I know is far easier to say than done, but here some small point from where to start.

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NMYJoY5gPKg
          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fixvb3s25Uk

          I can suggest reading material if you are interested.

  3. I wonder how this fits into the gene discovery about cilantro: I love fresh cilantro, but dried cilantro tastes like the smell of vomit to me.

  4. I had my genetic testing done with 23andme and I had a couple genotype markers that put me at “slightly higher odds of disliking the taste of cilantro”….I can’t say that I’ve actually had it all that much so hard to tell if it’s accurate.

    1. Did they hand over your full data in addition to their interpretations of it? Like if you wanted to submit your data to another group of geneticists, they could give you newer up-to-date info?

      1. Well they give you a profile of a number of traits, inherited conditions, etc that show genetic predispositions. The data I was given was fairly recent, couple of months old.

        I don’t know if I could hand the data directly to other genetic teams but there are some apps out there that allow me to share my data with them, so they can perform some tests on the data that weren’t covered by the initial provider.

        I thought it was an interesting exercise.

  5. What about some love for Jerusalem artichoke (sunroot, sunchoke, earth apple or topinambour)? I recently found a higher quality version of this root plant than is normally available in the supermarkets and found them to be quite delicious cooked. Then I tried them raw and almost became addicted to them. So crunchy and tasty. John McDougall lists them as a go-to starch food. However, I’ve stopped eating them because they cause huge gas. Any solutions to this? Evidently, they are high in inulin, which as the Wikipedia article states on inulin, is notorious for causing gas. What’s a civilized human to do?

    1. Tobias: I don’t have an answer to your question, but I wanted to thank you for your post. I had heard of Jerusalem artichoke’s before, but I really had no idea what they are. Your post prompted me to look up that Wilipedia article. Very interesting stuff. Now I want to try it – but maybe only on the weekend. ;-)

      1. I continue to eat the sunchokes despite the fact that I’ve promised myself not to… for said reasons. But I don’t eat as many and this seems to help but unfortunately not entirely. Bear in mind that I don’t like the ones I buy in the regular supermarket. They are too course. I only started to enjoy them because I found a more delicate variety sold at Jean-Talon Marché in Montreal, which is a massive food market. These are just under an inch in diameter and the cracks on the outer flesh have some red coloring. If not for the gas, I would eat these as a major staple. Now it just two or three per day.

        1. Tobias: re: ” I only started to enjoy them…” That’s a really great tip. We have a farmer’s market in my smallish city. I’m going to see if they carry them this summer (the only time our farmer’s market exists). It’s a good tip because I know that size, time of harvest etc can really make a difference in a food. So, now I know that if I don’t necessarily like the first one I try, I might consider trying again. Thanks again.

  6. i wonder what it means if i used o think cilantro tasted like soap when i was a teenager, but now i love it and eat it regularly in pretty large quantities. i guess liking cilantro can be an aquired taste, like coffee. if i have the genetic marker to taste the soapy aspect of cilantro, how was i able to get over that? weird!

    1. Maybe the gene stopped being expressed as much or at all. Like my head-hair hormone genes that used to make hair grow there…

      Maybe that’s part of the reasons adults like a lot of things kids don’t like. Evolutionarily, maybe kids have to be more careful what they eat. And with the adults, it doesn’t matter so much anymore…

    2. I absolutely love the smell of cilantro. I don’t like the taste of it, unless it comes in Vietnamese fresh vegetable rolls or vietnamese pho (I’m lucky, there is an asian restaurant near me that has a vegan menu, including this famous vietnamese soup). I think that if I eat it more regularly, I’ll probably like it more, especially if I learn how to cook with it properly. I find that even a little too much can destroy the taste of a whole pot of soup. :(

  7. I have several children who all love cilantro save one. My husband and I both think it’s delicious. How is it possible that one child of a large brood of cilantro lovers with cilantro loving parents hates it with a soapy passion? Gene studies boggle my mind.

  8. Everybody seems to like peppermint because it’s everywhere -candy, gum, toothpaste, mouthwash, ice cream and on and on.. I never liked the taste of peppermint, not even as a kid. I can’t even stand the thought of the flavor and smell of peppermint. I’m in my 50s now and about four years ago, I found that I have Gilbert’s syndrome. Guess what? The class of defective enzymes (UGTs) is responsible for getting rid of peppermint from the body.

    1. Don’t know if this is helpful, but I no longer test as high bilirubin (Gilbert’s) since I began eating a lot of cruciferous vegetables and curcumin supplements. According to my naturopath, both help to supply the missing enzyme. Isn’t that interesting??

      1. Eileen: Thank you so much for the tip. I knew about sulforaphane in crucifers (The challenge is eating enough of them raw everyday.) but not about turmeric. Can you please tell me how much turmeric a day you take? You said “curcumin supplements”. Is it whole turmeric or the extract? Can you also please tell me the brand you use? (Doctors say that Gilbert’s is symptomless and inconsequential, which is not my experience.)

        1. I am glad this was helpful! I was astonished to begin getting totally normal bilirubin counts out of the blue! It has stayed normal. Not sure if I am allowed to give a product name here for the curcumin. The supplement says it contains turmeric root extract 1000 mg along with bioperine (pepper) extract of 5 mg. I take one tablet either 2 or 3 times each day, I also do a lot of broccoli and broccoli sprouts. They seem to be keeping the Gilbert’s under control.
          (The supplement is available at Whole Foods under the brand name Vibrant Health.)

          1. Eileen: Thank you so much for the information. I’m intrigued by pipeline because it’s a known UGT inhibitor, which should aggravate Gilbert’s. Maybe the inhibitory effect of pipeline is outweighed by the longer presence of curcumin.

    2. My mother hates peppermint. Not sure if she has ever had her bilirubin tested, but I also find it too peppery. She likes hot, spicy food, but I can’t handle it at all. I really wish they made toothpaste watermelon flavored, or anise flavored, or heck, fennel might even be nice. I actually bought some that was cilantro flavored and since I’m not so good with the taste of cilantro (love the smell though), it made me gag so I stopped using it after about the 3rd try.

    1. I’m with you Allison – Love the fresh flavor of cilantro! Funny – I also think stink bugs smell bad at all. I get it though – I can’t stand the smell or taste of beets. They taste like dirt to me, and I can’t imagine how anyone could eat them. Different strokes for different folks!

      1. there are newer cultivars of beets that are free(er) of geosmin, the source of the earthy flavour…and some have even higher amounts of the red antioxidants. betalains are a whole nother class of antioxidants unto themselves so eat yor beets! a touch of vinegar gives a nice lift. boil whole, then peel and slice.

        1. So good to know! Thanks – I usually just pass them by in the produce dept, but I’m going to stop and do a smell test now, and hopefully try them again :)

    1. Not European. Dr. Greger wrote “Ashkenazim.” There’s a big difference; although we Ashkenazim settled in Europe, only a tiny minority of Europeans are Ashkenazim. I suggest you read the Wikipedia article on Ashkenazim at a bare minimum.

      1. Only 14% of Ashkenazim dislike cilantro aka Chinese parsley or in Hebrew/Arabic kuzbara. In Yemenite Jewish cuisine it accompanies almost every meal in the form of hhilbei (a soup dip of fenugreek, lemon juice, red pepper & kuzbara, either cooked or whipped) with soup garnered with hhawaij (cumin, black pepper, turmeric & cardamom). Good to know that coriander is from kuzbara, I didn’t know that. In Hebrew “kuzbara” means both “cilantro” & “coriander.” 1 Ashkenazi, 2 Ashkenazim. 1 Cohen, 2 Cohanim.

    1. I love cilantro too so we must be “genetic mutants!” Have you seen this video Nitrates In Vegetables? This is another great video that speaks about how cilantro contains nitrates, which reduces blood pressure and is protective of cardiovascular disease.

  9. As an interesting aside I’ve also heard that one reason for differences in taste preferences is attributed to the number of certain taste buds. Apparently some people have a higher concentration of the taste buds for bitter or sour. Apparently this makes them more sensitive to foods which are bitter or sour. These are the people who don’t like Broccoli or cabbage, and members of the cruciferous family of plants in general. I’m not making this up, I read about tests which were conducted some years ago which discovered differences in the types and concentrations of taste buds. The researchers lumped people in to three rough groups. The first were called super-tasters, the second average tasters, the third were dubbed, non-tasters.

    The names are pretty descriptive and self-explanatory. This kind of test was often used in high school biology classes to demonstrate differences in people’s perceptions. A very bitter substance was placed on a strip of paper and various people were asked to taste it. Some were highly sensitive and found it over whelming. Others didn’t taste it at all, and most found it slightly bitter. I am curious to know if there is a correlation between the genetic findings for Cilantro and these previous findings on taste buds.

  10. the list of stuff I hated is very long. If you want to learn to like something I suggest you grow some. Once you’ve raised up a little sprig to maturity you wont be able to resist a chomp. thats the magic moment…for me at least.

  11. I enjoyed cilantro for many years but suddenly experienced the soap taste that I’d heard others complain about. This lasted for a few months and now I’m back to enjoying cilantro. I can’t really say what precipitated this change in taste and subsequent reversal, my only thought is that at the time cilantro began to taste soapy to me I was consuming a high raw vegan diet loaded with leafy greens. Once I began eating more cooked foods the soapy taste went away.

  12. The first few times I tasted cilantro I thought it tasted like soap or chemicals and did not like it. For whatever reason, I decided to add a little to a Spanish rice and beans recipe I liked to make for pot luck contributions, and it seemed to add magic! I was hooked!
    This zucchini season when inundated with blessed freebies, I finally found something super easy I love! Instead of baking zucchini bread and muffins galore, make some really easy and healthy probiotics! It sounds scary if you’ve never done it, but it is really safe because of the way the microbes preserve the food! Just grate up a bunch of zucchini into a big bowl, a few carrots are great too, sea salt it to taste, and season with fresh diced garlic, jalapenos, plenty of cilantro, cumin seeds, the juice and zest from at least one lime, and some grated fresh turmeric is pretty nice too! With really clean hands, mix it all up really good, and squeeze and bruise the grated zucchini so it starts releasing it’s juices. Let the flavors meld for a while so you can taste it for salt and spices before putting it into jars. (If you have any other veggies or seasonings you think would work, feel free! I love to experiment with flavors and will often make each quart jar an entirely different flavor! Just keep in mind fermentation usually enhances potency.) Once you are happy with the flavors, ladle the mix into a canning jar or a special fermentation jar, leaving about 1 1/2 inches of head space for the expansion that will happen when fermentation begins. (Some people use a starter, but I never find it necessary. I suggest looking online for more details, if you are interested! Here’s a great place to start… http://www.wildfermentation.com/whats-so-wild-about-fermentation/) In average house temps, in few days you should see some bubbling starting, and should “burp” your jars daily to let some of those microbe farts out! LOL! In about 5-7 days you will have some awesome pro-biotic magic salsa/chutney-like stuff to use on anything and everything you could imagine! Now you can refrigerate it to slow the fermentation to a crawl, and it will keep almost indefinitely. Just don’t heat it above 115 F or you’ll kill the little beasties you worked so hard to make! Fermentation is a lost art, but it is fun, easy and addictive, so good for you, and will save you a ton of moolah!

  13. I loathe cilantro (to me it smells like a washcloth that’s been used for six months without being laundered and it doesn’t taste nearly as nice) but am able to eat and enjoy dried coriander, which is the ground root of the plant. That seems a good way to get at least some of the nutritional benefits of cilantro without dry-heaving and rinsing my mouth with vinegar.

  14. The soap taste question kind of skews these results. For example 21 percent of East Asians report disliking cilantro but only 8.4 percent think it tastes soapy. I’m with them. When I’ve been asked the soapy question in surveys I’ve had to reply no, even though I hate cilantro. Rosemary tastes soapy to me but I don’t mind it. Cilantro tastes genuinely rancid.

  15. I actually have some Cilantro and it actually does have a fishy smell to me as well as a weird taste. I never have used it, and someone else who lived with me must have bought it. I use mainly Cumin seed, garlic powder, turmeric, curry powder, chili powder, red and black pepper and Italian seasoning as seasonings. I also used fresh garlic in my beans as well.

  16. It’s strange – I used to hate straight cilantro but now I love it. I can taste the soapiness, but now I find it compelling, almost addictive. Learned response?

  17. About 20 yrs ago, I thought cilantro tasted like sucking on a wet washcloth. Then since I became vegetarian about 10 yrs ago, I love cilantro and always ask for a big pile on my Mexican food!

  18. This is the first article I’ve seen on osteo-arthritis (OA) on this website. Yeah! Please tag it!
    The thing with science is when you discover something, it raises more questions. In particular, I was wondering if there would be any differences between vegetarians/vegans on a cilantro-free diet and/or cilantro eating diet.
    I was also wondering what the compliance level was like – 20 stalks a day is a huge amount! How did people managed to eat that much?

      1. Don’t really like taking supplements but with chronic daily migraine I’m desperate. CoQ10 and magnesium are recommended by the migraine community. Where can I find unbiased information about them? Especially since magnesium supplements are poorly absorbed what is better and best? What about this Magnesium carbonate and citric acid (when water is added, ionic magnesium citrate forms.)? Have been getting stiff neck as part of the migraine and don’t sleep well either.

      2. Thanks! I’m sure this will help others in the future. I’m just reading Rethink Food: 100+ doctors can’t be wrong by Shushana Castle and Amy-Lee Goodman. There’s a couple pages on OA, in case others are looking to learn more about diet and OA. Basically, avoid animal products, go for green veggies and peaches, apples, cantaloupe and apricots. Would love to see the source for that, however (perhaps it is in the “notes” for the chapter, I haven’t checked yet).

  19. When I was in my teens, I saw cilantro in the store (actually, I smelled it walking by, and sniffed until I located it and read that it was cilantro). I had never had it before (that I knew of). I thought it smelled like a very pleasant soap, so I bought some to put in my bath water. I also rubbed it on my skin before drying off to keep the nice smell on me. [Yikes – I didn’t know some people thought it smelled like dirty washcloth or stink bug juice!!!] I didn’t know how to cook with it till decades later. I eat it all the time now (and don’t bathe with it anymore). I love its flavor and smell!

  20. When you don’t throw away the soaking water that has all of the God-given protein-digestant inhibitors in it, you will always get gas. The little beans, seeds, nuts, and grains all have this natural protection against insects, birds and other hungry organisms chowing down on them. This not something we need to ingest. Your plants will appreciate the soaking water.

  21. Funny thing, I was just telling a friend that I LOVED cilantro but I thought coriander tasted like detergent sort of..but somehow still like it. Strange I get the soapy reference for the seed but not the plant.

  22. On topic cilantro: I first didn’t like it and it tasted soapy to me (19 years ago). Now I love it and it tastes fresh and citrusy. I guess my genes didn’t change . . .. It took a few times trying, I think my taste had changed in less than a year.

  23. 23 and me said I have the gene that makes cilantro taste like soap, but it doesn’t to me. I wonder what turned off the gene.

  24. You have it backward. The people who don’t like cilantro lack the ability to smell and taste the fresh, herby flavor that cilantro-lovers enjoy. I love cilantro. Interestingly, we had a stink bug invasion in our house a couple of years ago, and one night as I was going to sleep, I was really perplexed as to why my bedding smelled like…coriander. I mentioned it to my husband, and he said that’s the smell that “stink” bugs emit to defend themselves. So obviously I am picking up on the chemical and I do enjoy the flavor of cilantro. (And maybe stink bugs.)

  25. I just read in an article by Dr. Greger that cilantro might help decreasing gout symptoms as it lowers uric acid in the body dramatically. Does this also apply to ground cilantro seeds one can purchase or just the fresh green leafs of cilantro?

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