Health Benefits of Muricata

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Annona muricata is known in many Spanish-speaking countries as guanabana. In English speaking countries, this large, spiny, green, tropical fruit is known as soursop or Custard Apple, and is also known as graviola in Portugal and Pawpaw in Brazil.

Regardless of what you call it, this large, soft, prickly green covered fruit can grow to more than 6 kilograms (12+ pounds). Inside, the flesh has a distinct creamy, sour pineapple and sweet strawberry flavor, a unique sweet and sour taste. Muricata is native to the Philippines, tropical Asian countries including Indonesia and Malaysia, and areas with high heat and humidity like South America, the Caribbean and the jungles of the Amazon.

Annona muricata is known for it’s refreshing juice, use in smoothies or sorbets and its tasty raw flesh. When eaten fresh and raw, muricata has many medicinal and health benefits. It is low in calories but high in fiber and vitamin C, numerous B vitamins like niacin, riboflavin and thiamine as well as phosphorus, calcium and traces of beneficial iron. Muricata also contains fatty acid compounds called acetogenins with potential antineoplastic (anti-cancer) and antimicrobial activity. [1]

The published study Potential Benefits of Annona muricata in Combating Cancer found that muricata “offers an alternative (to) chemotherapy and radiotherapy, especially for terminally ill patients. The benefits of using A. muricata suggest that this plant-based complementary and alternative medicine provides potential treatment options against cancer.”

This study and similar research suggests that muricata and muricata extracts effectively search for and destroy the malignant cells in 12 types of cancer, including lung, colon, prostate, breast and pancreatic cancer without harming the body’s healthy cells and tissues. Unlike chemo, the patient undergoing chemotherapy must endure a variety of gastrointestinal and musculoskeletal symptoms including nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, fatigue, fever, constipation, or diarrhea during the treatment. Muricata could possibly eliminate or reduce the need for chemo.

Additional health benefits of muricata include:

Muricata leaves can be added to your bath water to help reduce fever by lowering the body temperature. A poultice made from crushed leaves can be used to treat skin eruptions such as eczema, mouth ulcers or herpes. The same poultice can help relieve symptoms of arthritis and rheumatism when applied to the affected area. Applied to wounds, the poultice will reduce scarring and promote healing due to the plants antibacterial properties.

Extracts and teas made from muricata roots and bark have been used to aid diabetics by enhancing natural insulin production and lowering blood sugar levels. Muricata has a soothing sedative effect that helps promote a good night’s sleep.

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