A natural compound that blocks the taste of bitterness could slash the quantities of sugar and salt that lace processed foods today, thus helping the fight against obesity and cardiovascular disease.

The claim is being made by a US biotech company, Linguagen, which has just received a patent for its discovery, the British weekly New Scientist reports.

Processed foods are stuffed with sweeteners, fat and salt that aim at making a product more palatable, partly by masking bitter flavours. One tin of soup, for instance, can contain half a person’s recommended daily intake of salt.
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