Soursop may be the most famous cancer-fighting fruit you have never heard of. Also known as guanabana and graviola, the spiny green fruit is well known in the Caribbean and South America, where it grows on a tall evergreen tree.
The tree thrives in tropical climates and does less well as the weather cools. It can be found in south Florida, but it does better the closer it is to the equator. It is grown around the world in tropical climates, in equatorial South America, Africa and Asia. Fresh soursop is available online.
The creamy, custardy insides of the fruit is deliciously sweet and some say a combination of mango and strawberry. Yet is has apparent mystical healing powers, as do its stems, bark and soursop leaves. Soursop leaves can be made into tea and is said to help cancer patients survive and ultimately beat their disease.
They are harvested from many places in the Caribbean, including Puerto Rico, Jamaica and Grenada and the Virgin Islands.
Scientists have shown soursop/graviola contains phytochemicals that are good at killing resistant cancer cells. These are lab tests that have isolated the chemicals. However clinical trials have not yet been conducted (there’s no profit in it for pharmaceutical companies) to prove it is a definitive anti-cancer tool – or as some call it – an all natural cure for cancer.
Soursop is also known as a good anti-inflammatory agent and helps soothe intestinal upsets and is used by indigenous people, where the tree grows wild, as a treatment for dysentery. It also can help with insomnia. The guanabana seeds, while toxic to eat, can be pulverized into a paste that can sooth skin irritations.
There are many fruit and tea products made from soursop – see them here.