Guanabanas and paw paws
The long, prickly fruit comes from the graviola tree, an evergreen native to Mexico, the Caribbean, and Central and South America. It’s also known as custard apple, guanabana and Brazilian paw paw. Practitioners of herbal medicine use soursop fruit and graviola tree leaves to treat stomach ailments, fever, parasitic infections, hypertension and rheumatism. It’s used as a sedative, as well.
But claims of the fruit’s anti-cancer properties have attracted the most attention. A study published in the Journal of Medicinal Chemistry in 1997 suggests that soursop compounds tested on breast cancer cells in culture were more effective than chemotherapy in destroying the cells. But, without clinical trials, there is no data to support the claim.
Links to other disorders
Most studied are soursop’s fatty acid derivatives called annonaceous aceteogenins. The predominant acetogenin is annonacin, which, because of its toxicity, likely would not be studied in clinical trials.
When used orally, soursop is classified as likely unsafe, said Kellman, citing two studies. Eating the fruit could lead to movement disorders similar to Parkinson’s disease, according to a case-control study in the French West Indies. In addition, a study suggests tea made for the leaves and stems of graviola is associated with neurotoxicity.
In general, some cancer patients use herbal supplements to relieve their symptoms and to treat their cancer. Herbal supplements, though, are not a substitute for mainstream cancer care. What’s more, using herbal supplements while undergoing chemotherapy could reduce the efficacy of chemotherapeutic agents due to possible herb-drug interactions.
Scientists Find Anti-Cancer Compounds in Guyabano Fruit
Scientists have isolated six compounds from the guyabano fruit (scientific name, Annonamuricata Linn.) which are known to fight cancer, diabetes, heart ailment and tuberculosis.
Writing in a recent issue of the Silliman Journal, the researchers identified the following six compounds from the guyabano fruit which are known to have significant medicinal effects: beta-sitosterone (1), beta-sitosteryl fatty acid ester (2), beta-sitosterol (3, ) alpha-amyrin (4), beta-amyrin (5), and squalene (6).
“To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report on the isolation of 1-6 from A. muricata,” wrote Consolacion Y. Ragasa, Oscar B. Torres and Geneveve Soriano of the Chemistry Department and Center for Natural Sciences and Ecological Research, De La Salle University Manila, and Chien-Chang Shen of the National Research Institute of Chinese Medicine in Taipei, Taiwan.
The researchers collected the A. muricata fruits from Painaan, Rizal, and had them authenticated at the Bureau of Plant Industry in Manila.
After a series of laboratory tests identifying the six compounds, the researchers then cited earlier studies on the compounds’ medicinal properties:
Beta-sitosteronewas reported to fight high blood sugar, irregular heartbeat and tuberculosis.
Beta-sitosterolwas shown to have inhibited the spread and induced the destruction of colon and breast cancer.
- Alpha-amyrinand Beta-amyrinwere reported to have anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties.
- Squalenewas reported to suppress colonic cancer cells and to protect the heart by its ability to prevent the build up of lipid.
In their review of the literature, the authors cited other anti-cancer substances found in the guyabano plant: “The bioactivities of A. muricata are varied, but the commonly isolated compounds are acetogenins which are known for their anticancer properties.”
The substance called annohexocin, an acetogenin fromguyabano leaves, showed “significant inhibitory effect against six human cancer cell lines: lung, breast, colon, pancreatic, kidney and prostate.”
Similarly, the substances muricoreacin and murihexocin C, also found in the leaves of the guyabano plant, “exhibited significant cytotoxicities against six human tumor cell lines,” specifically prostate and pancreatic cancer.
Moreover, annomuricine and muricapentocin “showed significant cytotoxicities” against six types of human tumors, specifically pancreatic and colon cancer lines.
In their own earlier work, the authors reported that they had isolated three acetogenins from guyabano (cis-annoreticuin and sabadelin from the pulp,and annoreticuin-9-one from the seeds) which worked against six types of human tumors in the pancreas, prostate and lungs.
Their latest report was published in the Silliman Journal, Vol. 54, No. 1, January to June, 2013.
The Silliman Journal is the official research publication of Silliman University (since 1954). It comes out semi-annually and enjoys exchange arrangements with more than 200 academic/research journals in the Philippines and abroad. It has been recognized by the Philippine Commission on Higher Educationas one of the top internationally refereed academic journals in the country.
Let’s look at the guyabano cancer testimonials:
How Soursop Healed My Wife
(Qld. Australia)In 1994 I planted a soursop tree because I like the fruit. I use the young leaves for cooking instead of using bay leaves. In December 2010, my wife had an operation to remove the entire left breast and 3 lymph nodes because of cancer.
A month after the operation we visited the oncologist who told my wife there was no cancer in her body. However, they wanted to give her chemotherapy to make sure the cancer would not return. I told them that there was no way I would put my wife through hell. Thus, there would be no chemotherapy or hormonal treatment for my wife.
Out of frustration I just typed “a natural cure for cancer” into my computer, and up came soursop. It is referred as fruit, seeds, leaves, bark and roots which can be used by boiling 10 leaves of the sour sop in 3 cups of water until just 1 cup remains. Drink 2 cups a day regularly. The signs of the cancer dying can be seen within 3 weeks.
As the leaves of the sour sop fall during winter, we collect them all and boil a couple of handfuls in 3 liter of water which rapidly boils for 45 minutes. Drink 4 cups a day.
My wife visits the clinic regularly for tests and scans. The results are very good. 15 months have passed and no signs of cancer.
For those who have or know someone that has cancer can use the leaves as an alternative cancer treatment. It is affordable and can be grown in your own backyard.
Use it for healing cancer instead of paying big money for chemotherapy that can kill you. The sour sop has no known side effects. I planted 3 more trees during the middle of last summer.
They have many leaves which will help other cancer victims in my area. I am spreading the words about sour sop for healing cancer.
I hate conventional treatment because they make a huge profit from cancer patients who are vulnerable and weak.
Nicole Kristmann says:November 26, 2012 at 5:27 am
AMAZING RECOVERY OF BLADDER CANCER! I have fought stage 4 bladder cancer with my father for 2 years. We were getting ready to have his bladder removed before the cancer spread in his body. My brother sent Graviola leaves from the British Virgin Islands. After much convincing to my 78 year old non-believing father, he agreed to take them for 6 weeks prior to the biopsies required for the surgery. He took the tea and ate a plant based diet. We had the biopsies done. When we went for the results the surgeon, urologist and GP were all there asking what we did. There was not a trace of cancer in his bladder or his body. This works!!!!
Paul H. Williams, Gleaner Writer
DISCOVERY BAY, St Ann.
CANCER IS a scourge for which there seems to be no wholesale antidote. It attacks and kills just about anyone. No respecter of race, politics, religion and social status it is. It has decimated familial ties and relationships, and even attempted to destroy the love affair between Ray and Yvonne Kirlew of Discovery Bay, St Ann.
Diagnosed with lymphatic cancer (Hodgkin’s lymphoma) in late 2002, Yvonne went through an agonising period of chemotherapy which twisted and wracked her being with pain and nausea, in its efforts to kill thecancer cells. It was killing her instead, and so she planned her own funeral. But Ray was determined that the woman he loves was not going to leave him, and he nursed her back to good health. By December 2004, it seemed that Yvonne was cancer-free.
The Gleaner told their story in a two-part instalment in July 2007, and we also updated readers in January last year with the news that the cancer had returned between December 2008 and March 2009. Yvonne got ill again, and the dreaded chemotheraphy was suggested. Around the same time, Ray got an email about the cancer-curing properties of the soursop tree. He did some further research, and was mesmerised by what he read. Not having any empirical evidence, he set out to make the leaves and bark of the soursop tree into a concoction that would kill Yvonne’s cancer cells.
After much encouragement from Ray, Yvonne drank the potion. She got sicker initially, and refused to drink any more, but Ray urged her on. After a month of being on the dose, Yvonne’s health improve tremendously. Tests in September 2009 to determine when chemo-therapy would commence showed that the movement of the cancer cells had stopped. Amazingly! More tests were done, and up to Monday, January 18, 2010, when The Gleaner reported that ‘Raymond Kirlew ‘cures’ wife cancer with soursop leaves’, Yvonne, who gets tested regularly, but had no cancer.
There were many sceptics, some of whom said it was a matter of time before the cancer cells return. Some readers even questioned Ray’s wisdom, or lack thereof, for administering the soursop concoctions to his wife, despite the fact that he is not a medical doctor. But now, Ray is saying since the story broke, many people, including medical doctors themselves, have contacted him seeking advice on how to prepare the potion.
“Everyone who has called me regarding this soursop treatment, I have never ever asked for a penny, nor have I got a penny, and was not expecting any. I know for a fact that this thing has saved my wife, and whosoever wants to know how to make it, I would be happy to give them that information,” Ray said.
He has even told the story of a woman, known personally to him, who had lung cancer and was sent home to die because the cancer had spread to other organs. She is now living her life cancer-free after drinking the soursop potion. Another gentleman who was suspected of having a tumour in his brain is now doing well too. Some of those who refused to drink the concoction, Ray said, are now dead.
Ray and Yvonne have no regrets. They are convinced that Yvonne is alive because of the soursop tree, which bears that ‘jucky-jucky’ fruit that gives us that after-Sunday dinner belch. But what does Yvonne have to say to people who are still of the view that she is using a concoction not prescribed by doctors or approved by the authorities?
“I would say to them that the same way chemotherapy is used in treatingcancer patients, it was more than likely discovered by people who were trying to find a cure. By testing these treatments over a long period of time, people were healed, even temporarily … . I am one of the lucky ones, I think, because I tried something that may not have been proven, may not be in the medical books, but I tried it and it works for me.”
And it seems to have work wonders for Yvonne in other ways. “I also had a problem with my blood pressure. I have a tendency to have high blood pressure, and whenever I take the soursop drink, my pressure is down … . I am convinced that the soursop helps to kill the cancer cells, lower my blood pressure, and to repair the damaged nerves,” she said. The chemotherapy that she went through in 2003 had damaged some of her nerves, and thus she was having problems with her coordination.
It is almost 10 years since Yvonne, whose mother, father and brother had died of cancer, was diagnosed, and almost two years since she had started drinking the soursop concoction. Very recently, she went to New York to do some more tests. A week before she left, she was feeling pain in some major lymph nodes. So, she was a bit nervous upon leaving the island. Well, she is back, with a clean bill of health, and the pain is gone.
She still has the dress she had planned to spend eternity in. It’s in her closet, still clean, still stylish, but she has no plan to wear it anytime soon. And even so, it might just be too small, she said.