ABOUT SUGAR and My Sister

by Remedios Dorio


No doubt about it, sugar is sweet.

In our everyday life, we just don’t mind the taste of foods we eat, in the sense that for us, it is sour, when it is sour; salty when it is salty; or sweet when it is sweet.


My sister, she was about three years old then, have a nice crazy notion about some things. One time she was with our father near a small fishpond when she saw a tilapia swimming near the bank of the pond. She told it to our father that answered her to drove the fish in the middle, but she answered that she wouldn't do it because the water in the middle of the pond was depth and that the fish will drown. Until now we have laughed at her for that but really that cute answer of her was very logical to a child’s mind because our parents always reminding that we must not come into the deep water because it’s dangerous. One could be drowned.


Talking about sugar and my sister.


Our mother bought a brown sugar for she will make ‘bukayo.’ Bukayo was a sweet delicacy made of coconut flesh cooked in brown sugar with kalamansi. My sister never had seen yet how a sugar looked liked, so seeing the brown sugar, she asked our mother what it was. Our mother answered her that it’s sugar. She asked again if sugar were a food that can be eaten and when our mother answered yes, she asked if she could try it. She tried one teaspoon of the brown sugar and was amazed. ‘Sugar is sweet!’ she exclaimed. Then she asked again, ‘Why sugar is sweet?’  


No one in the family could explain to her why sugar was sweet, indeed.


The truth was our taste is in our tongue.


Our tongue was composed of papillary cells. In every center of our taste, sit, ten to sixteen taste cells which all connected to our nervous system. The center of our taste can be divided into four groups, and each group reacted to either sweet, salty, bitter and sour.


The taste of our drinks or foods depended to what cells in our tongue they prickled. The tongue is divided into four taste areas. The sweet area is on the point of the tongue; the bitter area a little behind; the sour to both sides; while salty taste is all over the tongue.


Onions have no taste at all, we just smells it.


Foods have no taste when we have a cold or a fever. Taste and smell works together.