A tray with chocolate. Photograph: Sia Kambou/AFP
MADRID: One of the side-effects of chemotherapy in cancer patients is dysgeusia, an impaired sense of taste that can leave a patient's favourite foods, such as chocolate, with no flavour at all.
The Michelin-starred Spanish pastry chef Jordi Roca suffers from a rare neurological disease that affects his voice and throat. It made him wonder: what if he totally lost his sense of taste?
His friend, the chef Orio Blanes, has been living with dysgeusia for two years, and that also inspired Roca to create the "The Sense of Cocoa" experience, now a documentary.
"It was as if the dessert had a heartbeat ... the heartbeat of the life I'm fighting for.
Roca's project worked with patients with cancer and other ailments and with a group of neuroscientists and neuro-Gastronomy experts to create a cocoa flavour that the patients experience through their own memories.
"It was as if the dessert had a heartbeat ... the heartbeat of the life I'm fighting for," said Susana Quevedo who was deeply moved after eating Roca's white chocolate dessert.
Quevedo, 50, has been diagnosed with ovarian cancer and was one of the seven patients who got to taste the chocolate desserts Roca created.
The challenge faced by the chef was to help the patients reconnect with chocolate flavours they had lost, via "other aural, visual and tactile sensations," he said.
When the youngest participant, Marian Torres, thinks about chocolate, she remembers her first years at school. Roca concocted a dessert using distilled water and pencil tips and put them alongside sounds of playtime, to help her flash back to those moments.
"It reminded me of the joy of eating chocolate and sharing it with my friends, which was such a simple and comforting time," she said.
Talk of the global population reaching 10 billion by 2050 has been around for some time. Yet, this statistic actually hides the real source of this growth, and its implications. Only two regions — sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia — will contribute the lion’s share of this new headcount. Indeed, elsewhere
Read on to find out what's veganism, and how shifting to a vegan diet and discipline can do a world of good.
Bad breath, also referred to as halitosis, may result from poor hygiene or eating food with strong odours. Read on to find out how you can easily reduce or prevent it.
A Hong Kong bakery is doing its part to support the city's pro-democracy protest movement by making mooncakes with a message.
Men may be more likely to victim-blame women who are sexually harassed because they have more empathy with the perpetrators, a new study suggests.
In her new cookbook, “Every Day Is Saturday,” Sarah Copeland’s goal is to bring a weekend-cook mentality to weekday meals.