Guanabana, better known as Soursop is known to be effective in treating cancer, improving respiratory illness, reducing inflammation, relieving pain, healing wounds and many more.
The English name Soursop is not much appealing to the ear but its nutrients are very much efficient to the human body. Offlate, the fruit has gained much fame due to its amazing cancer-fighting property.
You can enjoy a lot of health benefits and keep a variety of chronic health conditions at bay if you consume guanabana (Graviola)in your daily diet. So, let’s learn about the health benefits of Guanabana.
What Is Guanabana?
Guanabana or Soursop is the fruit of Annona muricata, an evergreen tree. It is typically found in the tropical regions of America.
It widely grows in high humid and warm winter season. The fruit can’t survive temperature below 5 degrees. In extremely low temperatures, it becomes dry.
The flavor of it is a combination of tomatoes and lettuce. It’s a citrus flavor fruit with a creamy banana texture. Nowadays, it is promoted as an alternative cancer treatment.1 The size of the fruit is long around 2 feet with an oval shape.
The fruit is rich in Vitamin C, fiber content, and antioxidants.2 Due to it’s antioxidant it is said to be a major cancer-fighting fruit. However, the pharmaceutical industry has not yet taken it as a medicine for cancer.
Health Benefits Of Guanabana (Graviola )
From centuries in South America and Southeast Asia, the tree is used for its medicinal properties. Almost all the parts of the tree the bark, the root, the leaves, the seeds, and the fruit have some or other medicinal property.
Our ancestors are using it from the time when there was no pharmaceutical industry. The tree was used to fight against cardiovascular diseases, liver issues, respiratory diseases, arthritis, fever, sleep disorders, cough, and a few more diseases.
For few decades, the Guanabana fruit is used to fight cancer. It is a popular natural therapy to attack cancer safely and effectively.
Some of the major benefits of the fruit are discussed below:
1. Guanabana A Natural Remedy For Cancer
It attacks the cancer cells safely and effectively. Not only this, the fruit also diminishes the symptoms of cancer like hair fall, nausea, weight loss etc. The fruit comes without any side-effect. So, you can consume it along with your medical treatment too.
Not only the fruit but also the stems and roots of the Guanabana tree can destroy the cancer cells. The same was investigated in 1970 by the National Cancer Institute. The research of this institute, however, was never published due to unknown political reasons in the medicinal industry.
But later in 1976, Guanabana was proved to be a potent cancer killer by around 20 famous laboratory tests. Another study states a compound in the leaves of Guanabana is selectively cytotoxic for the pancreas, colon, and lungs cancer cell lines.3
Thus, the fruit can efficiently kill and target the malignant cancer cells. it can treat around 12 kinds of cancer like colon, breast, lung, pancreatic, and prostate cancer.
2. Protects Immune System
It protects and strengthens the immune system. A strong immune system fights better with diseases. It works by increasing the levels of immune cells.
3. Gives A Boost Of Energy
The fruit is also effective in giving you a surge of energy. With an energetic body, you can have a better outlook on life. It is efficient in abolishing fatigue, weakness, and is also a mood-enhancer.
4. Is A Powerful Anti-oxidant
Oxidative stress is the major cause of an array of health issues. The human body gets loaded with the free radicals with time and thus suffer from oxidative stress.
A study done showed the high concentration of antioxidants in guanabana leaves, fruits, and the peel can eliminate the free radicals and reduce the reactive oxygen species.4 The overproduction of free radicals can cause DNA damage and cell death which eventually is harmful to health.
The Antioxidant activity in guanabana are brought about by the presence of polyphenol, carotenoid, tannin, and anthocyanin content.
5. Respiratory Health Benefits Of Guanabana
The fruit works as it has natural anti-inflammatory properties.5 This can help to clear the airways, relieve the chest congestion, and soothe the irritated throat.
Moreover, it is more off an expectorant that can give you a speedy recovery against these ailments by clearing up your nasal cavity and respiratory tract.
6. Can Relieve Stress
The tea prepared from Graviola fruit can help you relieve your stress significantly. It is used for ages for the same. The benefits of guanabana are brought about by the presence of mind-soothing and anti-inflammatory properties.
7. Guanabana An Excellent Pain Reliever
The fruit also has analgesic properties. It can help you get rid of any kind of the pain in your body be it internal or external as a result of injury or wound.6 In addition o this the sedative action act as anti-pain signals to help you get rid of the pain feeling.
8. Gastrointestinal Benefits Of Guanabana
Guanabana fruit or Graviola has lots of Vitamin C which can be effective to cure a variety of gastrointestinal issues. You suffer from gastric issues when your body has lots of toxins and salts in your body.
The Guanabana aids in removing these toxins from your body. In addition to it, it also has the ability to remove the parasites and the harmful bacteria’s from the gut that cause itching, irritation, and swelling of the colon.
9. Skin Benefits Of Guanabana
For skin benefits, you can utilize the seed from the Gravilo fruit. Make a powder from the seeds and use it as an astringent.
This will not only reduce your fine line, wrinkles, and blemished but also slow down the progression of the skin-aging process.
However, you need to apply it in a paste form over the affected areas to maintain the healthy glow and charm on your face.
Alternatively, you can also buy soursop oil(guanabana oil) from the market and use it direct for getting a healthy skin.
It does so as it has anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties that fight against skin-infecting microorganisms.
10. Can Heal Wounds
The stem and bark extract of guanabana can have the ability to heal any sort of wound. The application of the leaf extracts of guanabana is even effective against rat wounds.It works as it has antioxidative, anti-inflammatory, and wound healing agent.
11. Can Cure Depression, Anxiety, And Stress
The fruit and the leaf extracts have shown anti-depressive effects in rats. However, the human intervention studies about the same are still on-going.
It is seen that the phytochemicals present in the guanabana fruit and stem have the power to bind to the receptors of the brain responsible for mood, behavior, thinking, and memory. Moreover, it also stimulates the secretion of brain functioning enzymes.7
A study done using guanabana stem bark extract on a rat gave positive outcomes against depression. Even the Guanabana leaf extracts had sedative and antidepressant properties.
12. Health Benefits Of Guanabana To Control Parasites
The fruit is anti-parasitic in nature. It is commonly used in America to prevent parasitic infections.
Mostly the tea made from the Guanabana plant is used to clean the gut and the intestine and thereby prevent any sort of parasitic infections.
13. Guanabana Can Reduce Inflammation
The pulp and skin of the guanabana is highly effective in reducing inflammation. In a study done on mice it was found that it acts on inflammation by reducing the chemical mediators of inflammation that are COX and nitric oxide.8
In another study done using Guanabana leaf extracts and tea, it was found that it can reduce short-term and chronic inflammation in mouse cells.
This was brought about by altering the nitric oxide, TNF-α and IL-1β receptors responsible for inflammation.
14. Can Help Maintain Blood Sugar Levels
A study was done on the rat to find out the effect of guanabana on the blood sugar levels. It was found that the guanabana leaf extract can decrease the blood glucose levels by increasing the functioning of insulin.
Further, the anti-diabetic effect increases the anti-oxidation levels in the liver which reduces the oxidation of fat and protect the pancreatic cells.
All these properties were seen to maintain weight too. It was also seen that these properties were brought about by the phenols in the guanabana leaf extract.
So, to protect your blood sugar levels consider consuming a tea prepared using guanabana leaf extracts. However, never replace or substitute your medication with this.
Mechanism Of Action Of Guanabana
Guanabana has a powerful agent called Annonaceous acetogenins. They are phytochemical with anti-tumor and pesticidal agents. These phytochemicals are present in the bark, twigs, leaves, and fruit.
When tested on animal models, the fruit showed anti-diabetic effects as it has antioxidants, and protective pancreatic beta cells to improve the glucose metabolism.9
Additionally, the fruit act as an anti-inflammatory and analgesic agent by inhibiting the cyclogenesis(harmful cells) and opioid receptors.
Guanabana is proven in several studies for its benefits against a number of viruses, parasites, and bacteria in test tubes.
However, there is no human study done as of now to prove its efficiency. Several studies on rodents have shown positive results of Guanabana.
Laboratory studies suggest the effect of the fruit on several types of cancer cells. The fruit has a powerful chemical called acetogenins which the is an active ingredient that fights against cancer cells.
However, when taken in excessive amounts substances from the fruit can damage the nerve cells and can even cause some neurological effects resembling Parkinson’s disease. Although, it’s a very rare condition.
How To Use Guanabana To Get Benefits Of It :
Guanabana is a fruit from an evergreen tree. It’s not only the fruit that can be consumed for health benefits but also the leaves, the barks, and the roots. If you really want to enjoy its benefits, you should try to consume all the parts of the tree in different forms.
To start with you can consume the fruit. Guanabana has a good delicious taste. You can consume it as it is or you can even sprinkle some black salt to enhance the taste.
Next, the important part is the leaves. Try making a tea from the leaves of the tree. The tea is a powerhouse of antioxidants. For this, select a few dried or fresh leaves. Slice the leaves into small pieces.
Next, in a pan take one and a half cup of water. Put the leaves in the water and keep it for boiling for good 15 minutes. After boiling cover and steep for 30-45 minutes.
At last, strain the water and drink it like a tea. You can even add local honey to enhance the taste. Avoid adding white sugar as it will diminish the effect.
In the same manner, you can consume the bark of the tree. The bark of the tree has antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-malarial properties.
For this remedy, scoop it around a 2-4 inch bark from the tree. Boil the bark in a glass of water. Cover and let it steep for good 40 minutes. Strain the mixture and consume it as it is. Add honey or stevia for taste.
Alternatively, if you don’t have the access to fruit, there are many guanabana supplements available in the market that you can consume to enjoy its health benefits.
When consuming in any form on a regular basis try consulting your doctor. It is just a precautionary step.
Safety And Considerations When Taking Guanabana
Guanabana is said to have no side-effects. Nevertheless, it’s dependent on the body. It can show a different response to different people. However, until now no negative response or side-effect is reported with Guanabana consumption.
If you suffer from low blood pressure issues, severe cardiac issues, or you are pregnant you should avoid it. Alternatively, you can eve ask your doctor before consumption. If you are someone who takes high medicine dose regularly consider consulting a doctor first as it might react with the medicines.
Guanabana is a nutrient-rich food. An overdose of any food item may prove harmful same is with Guanabana. Guanabana if taken in large amounts can cause nausea and vomiting.
Try to consume low to the moderate amount when taking it as a supplement. Moreoff, if you develop an allergic reaction to consumption immediately stop the use and consult a doctor.
Till now, no cases have been reported which show ill effects of the fruit. Rarely people develop mild symptoms only when taken in an inappropriate manner.
When Should You Not Take Guanabana?
You should not consume Guanabana if you suffer or are on the following things:
- You are on blood pressure medications. The consumption might increase the effects.
- You are on diabetic medicines. The consumption might increase the effect.
- You suffer from liver or kidney disease. This is because the fruit can cause toxicity in the kidney and liver with regular use.
- You are on nuclear imaging. The fruit can reduce the tissue uptake of radiopharmaceuticals used for diagnosis or treatment. This will not harm your body but might disrupt the results of nuclear imaging.
- You have a low platelet count. The fruit can further reduce your platelet count.
Nature has the cure for everything. It has a variety of healing substances to maintain healthily and reverse the array of diseases. However, now we are too much dependent on the modern medicine and have totally forgotten the old age remedies.
The modern science is providing all the luxurious ways of treating a disease or a disorder. Along with the luxuries, comes an array of side-effects too. We are so engrossed in the modern medicines that we don’t care about its side-effects in the longer run.
Perhaps, now it’s the time to be less dependent on the modern world instead go to our roots. Here going to our root means trying the holistic ways of treating and calming our body. Nature is the best method for preventing and curing diseases.
Guanabana may not be suitable for everyone as everybody react differently to different things. But, it certainly can’t be bad for the individual who suffers from life-threatening diseases like cancer, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s disease.
Guanabana is a proven fruit to fight all these fatal diseases. If you wish for good health than you should surely give a try to this fruit. Till now, it is the best natural medicine for cancer.
References [ + ]
|1.||↑||Mishra S., Ahmad S., Kumar N., Sharma B.K. Annona muricata (the cancer killer): A review. Glob. J. Pharm. Res. 2013;2:1613–1618.|
|2.||↑||Gavamukulya Y., Abou-Elella F., Wamunyokoli F., AEl-Shemy H. (2014). Phytochemical screening, anti-oxidant activity and in vitro anticancer potential of ethanolic and water leaves extracts of Annona muricata (Graviola). Asian Pac. J. Trop. Med. 7, S355–S363.|
|3.||↑||Rady I., Bloch M.B., Chamcheu R.-C.N., Banang-Mbeumi S., Anwar M.R., Mohamed H., Babatunde A.S., Kuiate J.R., Noubissi F.K., El Sayed K.A., et al. Anti-cancer Properties of Graviola (Annona muricata): A Comprehensive Mechanistic Review. Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity. 2018.|
|4.||↑||Ong H., Norzalina J. Malay herbal medicine in Gemencheh, Negri Sembilan, Malaysia. Fitoterapia. 1999;70:10–14.|
|5.||↑||De Sousa O.V., Vieira G.D.-V., de Pinho J.D.J.R., Yamamoto C.H., Alves M.S. Antinociceptive and anti-inflammatory activities of the ethanol extract of Annona muricata L. leaves in animal models. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2010;11:2067–2078.|
|6.||↑||Jaramillo-Flores M., Hernandez-Sanchez H. Thermal diffusivity of soursop (Annona muricata L.) pulp. J. Food Eng. 2000;46:139–143.|
|7.||↑||Pélissier Y., Marion C., Kone D., Lamaty G., Menut C., Bessière J.-M. Volatile components of Annona muricata L. J. Essent. Oil Res. 1994;6:411–414.|
|8.||↑||Rupprecht J.K., Hui Y.-H., McLaughlin J.L. Annonaceous acetogenins: A review. J. Nat. Prod. 1990;53:237–278.|
|9.||↑||Kim G., Tran N., Choi E., Song Y., Song J., Shim S., et al. . (2016), Immunomodulatory efficacy of standardized Annona muricata (Graviola) leaf extract via activation of mitogen-activated protein kinase pathways in RAW 264.7 macrophages. Evid. Based Complement. Altern. Med. 2016, 1–10.|