Soursop popularly known as aluguntugui, is the fruit of Annona muricata, a broadleaf, flowering, evergreen tree. The exact origin is unknown. It is native to the tropical regions of the Americas and is widely propagated. It is in the same genus, Annona, as cherimoya and is in the Annonaceae family.
Aluguntugui is adapted to areas of high humidity and relatively warm winters; temperatures below 5 °C (41 °F) will cause damage to leaves and small branches, and temperatures below 3 °C (37 °F) can be fatal. The fruit becomes dry and is no longer good for concentrate.
The flavour of the fruit has been described as a combination of strawberry and pineapple, with sour citrus flavour notes contrasting with an underlying creamy texture reminiscent of coconut or banana. It is widely promoted (sometimes as “graviola”) as an alternative cancer treatment. There is, however, no medical evidence that it is effective.
See how soursop is medicinal to the body
1. Anti-cancer properties
It contains annonacin, which is a neurotoxin that is classified as acetogenin. Studies reveal that the presence of annonacin in soursop makes this fruit effective for inhibiting the growth of cancer cells when compared with chemotherapy and Adriamycin. Regular consumption of soursop is therefore highly essential for preventing the onset of cancer attacks
2. Boosts the Energy Level
The presence of fructose in soursop makes this fruit an excellent source of energy. Fructose is a monosaccharide (simple sugar) that acts as a building block of complex carbohydrates.
3. Boosts the Immune System
Soursop fruit is an excellent source of natural products such as annonacin, acetogenins, muricapentocin, gentisic acid, annocatacin, anonol, annocatalin, linoleic acid, annohexocin, gigantetronin, caclourine, annomuricin and anomurine, which are all essential for boosting the immune system thereby helping to fight against disease causing agents.
4. Anti-oxidizing Properties
It is an excellent source of vitamin C thus acts as a great antioxidant for promoting good health and slowing down the ageing process.
5. Prevents Osteoporosis
Soursop is a rich source of calcium and phosphorus, which are essential for maintaining strong bones and for preventing osteoporosis.
6. Aids Digestion
It is an excellent source of dietary fibre thus very good for facilitating easy digestion of food.
7. Culinary Purposes
The white pulp of the soursop fruit can be used for preparing smoothies, syrups, soft drinks, beverages, sherbets, candies, ice creams and juices. Soursop leaves can be used for tenderizing meat.
8. Nutritional Values of Soursop
Soursop is an excellent source of calcium, vitamin C, vitamin B1, vitamin B2, sodium, protein, potassium, pectin, glucose, fructose and dietary fibre, which are essential for promoting good health.
10. Maintains Healthy Heart
Soursop contains vitamin B1 and B2 that are essential for facilitating blood circulation thereby contributing to the maintenance of a healthy heart.
11. Treatment of Gastrointestinal Problems
The fruit and leaves can be used for treating gastrointestinal diseases such as stomach pains, diarrhoea.
12. Antibacterial Properties
It contains phytochemicals that are antibacterial in nature thus have been proven effective for treating bacterial infections such as fever, cold etc.