Soursop, also known as graviola, is the fruit of Annona muricata, a type of tree native to tropical regions of the Americas. This prickly green fruit has a creamy texture and a strong flavor that is often compared to pineapple or strawberry. Soursop is typically eaten raw by cutting the fruit in half and scooping out the flesh. Fruits range in size and can be quite large, so it may be best to divide it into a few portions.
A typical serving of this fruit is low in calories yet high in several nutrients like fiber and vitamin C. A 3.5-ounce (100-gram) serving of raw soursop contains
- Calories: 66
- Protein: 1 gram
- Carbs: 16.8 grams
- Fibre: 3.3 grams
- Vitamin C: 34% of the RDI
- Potassium: 8% of the RDI
- Magnesium: 5% of the RDI
- Thiamine: 5% of the RDI
Soursop also contains a small amount of niacin, riboflavin, folate and iron. Interestingly, many parts of the fruit are used medicinally, including the leaves, fruit and stems. It is also used in cooking and can even be applied to the skin.
Research has also unearthed a variety of health benefits for soursop in recent years.
Some test-tube and animal studies have even found that it may help with everything from alleviating inflammation to slowing cancer growth. Although most research is currently limited to test-tube studies, some studies have found that soursop could potentially help eliminate cancer cells.
One test-tube study treated breast cancer cells with soursop extract. Interestingly enough, it was able to reduce tumour size, kill off cancer cells and enhance the activity of the immune system Another test-tube study looked at the effects of soursop extract on leukaemia cells, which was found to stop the growth and formation of cancer cells
However, keep in mind that these are test-tube studies looking at a strong dose of soursop extract. Further studies need to look at how eating the fruit may affect cancer in humans.
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