The graviola fruit, also called the soursop, Evo, Guyabano, and Brazilian pawpaw, is a fruit typically found in areas with high humidity. These are places that maintain warmth year-round, such as Mexico, Cuba, and northern South America. The fruit also has other nicknames, most commonly the custard apple, due to its super-smooth texture. This particular fruit comes from the Annona muricata, which is an evergreen tree. Although the plant does best in temperatures hot all year, some have been grown in southern Florida and southeast Asia. The graviola tree usually averages six meters when fully grown.
While many people eat graviola fruit on a regular basis, there are some concerns that it may have unwanted side effects. More research is being carried out into these.
What is graviola good for?
Graviola is considered to be something of a ‘miracle fruit’ in the places where it is grown and consumed regularly, on account of the excellent nutritional and health benefits that it offers. As well as being a tasty snack that has a lot of vitamins, it has also been shown to help fight inflammation, infection, boost the immune system and help to stave off fevers and infections. The fruit is high in vitamin C in particular, with a typical 3.5oz serving containing 34% of your recommended daily intake of the vitamin. Vitamin C helps to repair your cells and can boost your immune system, helping to fight off infections.
The fruit also has a high antioxidant level. These antioxidants can fight against the damage caused by free radicals in your body, which can cause heart disease and diabetes. Consuming graviola may boost your antioxidant levels and prevent or reduce symptoms of these illnesses, as well as improving brain function and stabilizing mental health.
The fruit is not the only part of the graviola tree that has been used medicinally. The roots, bark, and seeds of the graviola have been used as well. It has only been recently that scientists have begun to back up the medicinal value of soursop with evidence. With its rising popularity, more studies have been conducted to determine the health benefits of gaviola fruit. Natural News has published articles about the graviola tree fruit stopping the spread of breast and pancreatic cancers. A lot of people use graviola for cancer. It’s been shown that graviola extracts can help to fight and kill cancer cells related to liver and breast cancer. There have also been more recent laboratory tests which have shown graviola pulp extract to have an impact when fighting prostate cancer cells in mice, although clinical trials in humans are awaited following the animal study.
Graviola is not a cure for cancer and you shouldn’t buy graviola capsules just for the sake of fighting a cancer diagnosis, although the fruit does have other benefits which may help you alongside other cancer treatments if you are suffering.
There are some other health benefits too – the fruit has been known to lower blood sugar levels and to help lower blood pressure. With that in mind, it’s important that anyone taking medications for these conditions already speak to their doctor before eating the fruit, otherwise they may cause themselves health problems.
The properties of the graviola fruit are what have helped put it on the top of health lovers’ “must have” lists. In addition to the medicinal benefits of soursop, it can be turned into a variety of foods. There is soursop ice cream, soursop juice, soursop fruit bars, and more. Its taste has been described as a cross between a pineapple, strawberry, and banana.
This fruit is also being looked into for the purpose of fighting viruses and parasites. Does it make sense now why they call it the “healing fruit?”
Is graviola safe to eat?
A lot of people who grow graviola in tropical areas eat it on a regular basis or use graviola leaf extract as a medicinal herbal supplement. Generally, it’s believed that graviola is a safe fruit to eat. The flesh of the edible fruit is what you should consume, but the seeds do contain some toxic elements and you have to make sure you discard of those fully before you eat the fruit.
There is some concern that the fruit may not be completely safe when eaten. Some studies have shown that there is a potential link between consuming graviola fruit regularly and motor disorders of the brain, namely Parkinson’s Disease. University studies have declared it safe to eat and nutritious but it is worth bearing these concerns in mind.
How do you eat graviola fruit?
Graviola fruit can be eaten raw and has a smooth texture. If you are eating the fruit then you must remove the seeds first as they are toxic – they are even crushed to make a poultice used against head lice, so you don’t want to be eating them. You can scoop the flesh straight from the fruit. Due to its softness it isn’t really a fruit that you can cube or cut into easy-to-eat slices.
A lot of people use graviola as a topping for yogurts or oatmeal. It’s also popular as a drink, either as fresh juice or made into a smoothie. If you have a south or central American food store near you, you might be able to buy the fruit fresh, although if ordering online then graviola juice tends to be the option to go for.
Graviola leaves are also made into a tea, which you can drink and enjoy many of the same health benefits as the fresh fruit.
How does graviola fruit taste?
Soursop or graviola has a taste that is sometimes described as being between a strawberry and an apple, with a little bit of a citrus kick thrown in. Despite the soursop name, the fruit is not sour but sweet, and it has a creamy texture that isn’t too far from a banana. Because of that rich, smooth texture it is great when added to smoothies or desserts
How do you know if graviola is ripe?
Soursop is green when it is growing, and starts to turn yellow as it ripens, although it will never lose that green color completely. Ripe graviola is also a little softer to the touch – it should have a little bit of give when squeezed or pressed. If it isn’t showing signs of yellowing and is very firm, it’s best to leave it a little longer to ripen further.
Is soursop banned in the US?
There are some false reports that soursop is banned in the USA, but that’s not the case. Soursop isn’t commonly available to buy but international supermarkets and grocery stores will often stock it, and you can buy graviola juices and supplements online to be shipped to your home.
Are there any side effects?
There are some concerns about links between soursop or graviola and Parkinson’s Disease, but these have not been proven so far.
One thing you do need to watch for is the tendency of graviola to lower blood sugar levels. While this can be useful, it’s important that anyone on any kind of diabetes medication consults with their doctor before consuming graviola.
The same applies to the fruit’s ability to lower blood pressure – anyone taking medication for hypertension may find that graviola amplifies the effect and causes health problems.
The tea made from graviola isn’t recommended for regular consumption and should be avoided by small children or anyone who is pregnant.
Graviola vs soursop – any differences?
There are no differences between graviola and soursop fruit. The tree and fruit are both called graviola while soursop is just the name sometimes used more commonly in North America.