Graviola: Snapshot


Extracts of Graviola have been shown to be effective against some viruses, bacteria, and parasites in test tubes. Laboratory studies have also shown Graviola to be effective against some types of cancer cells. It contains chemicals called acetogenins, which are thought to be the active ingredient. However, there are no human trials testing Graviola against cancer.

Botanical Name

Annona muricata

Part Used

Leaf

Common Names

Soursop, Graviola, Brazilian Paw Paw, Corossolier, Guanabana, Guanavana, guanaba, anona de broquel, Toge-Banreisi, Durian benggala, Nangka blanda, Nangka londa

Brief History

Graviola has a long, rich history of use in herbal medicine as well as a long recorded indigenous use. In the Peruvian Andes, a leaf tea is used for catarrh, and the crushed seed is used to kill parasites In the Peruvian Amazon the bark roots and leaves are used for diabetes and as a sedative and antispasmodic. Indigenous tribes in Guyana use a leaf and/or bark tea of Graviola as a sedative and heart tonic. In the Brazilian Amazon, a leaf tea is used for liver problems, and the oil of the leaves and unripe fruit is mixed with olive oil and used externally for neuralgia, rheumatism and arthritis pain. In Jamaica, Haiti and the West Indies, the fruit and/or fruit juice is used for fevers, parasites, as a lactagogue, and diarrhea; and the bark or leaves are used as an antispasmodic, sedative, and nervine for heart conditions, coughs, grippe, difficult childbirth, asthma, asthenia, hypertension and parasites.

Constituents

Acetaldehyde, Amyl-caproate, Amyloid, Annonain, Anomuricine, Anomuricinine, Anomurine, Anonol, Atherosperminine, Beta-sitosterol, Campesterol, Cellobiose, Citric-acid, Citrulline, Coclaurine, Coreximine, Dextrose, Ethanol, Folacin, Fructose, Gaba, Galactomannan, Geranyl-caproate Glucose, HCN, Isocitric-acid, Lignoceric-acid, Malic-acid, Manganese, Mericyl-alcohol, Methanol, Methyl-hex-2- enoate, Methyl-hexanoate, Muricine, Muricinine, Muricapentocin, Muricoreacin, Myristic-acid, P-coumaric-acid, Paraffin, Potassium-chloride, Procyanidin, Reticuline, Scyllitol, Stearic-acid, Stepharine, Stigmasterol, Sucrose, Tannin, Xylosyl- cellulose

Therapeutic Properties

anticancerous, antitumoral, antimicrobial, antiparasitic, hypotensive (lowers blood pressure)

Vitalist Properties

Temperature: Cool

Moisture: Dry

Therapeutic Indications

cancer (all types), broad-spectrum internal and external antimicrobial to treat bacterial and fungal infections, internal parasites and worms, high blood pressure, depression, stress, and nervous disorders

Primary Uses

Cancer

In a 1976 plant screening program by the National Cancer Institute, graviola leaves and stem showed active toxicity against cancer cells. Thus far, specific acetogenins in graviola and/or extracts of graviola have been reported to be selectively toxic in vitro to these types of tumor cells: lung carcinoma cell lines; human breast solid tumor lines; prostate adenocarcinoma; pancreatic carcinoma cell lines; colon adenocarcinoma cell lines; liver cancer cell lines; human lymphoma cell lines; and multi-drug resistant human breast adenocarcinoma.

Researchers in Taiwan reported in 2003 that the main graviola acetogenin, annonacin, was highly toxic to ovarian, cervical, breast, bladder and skin cancer cell lines at very low dosages saying; “. . . Annonacin is a promising anti-cancer agent and worthy of further animal studies and, we would hope clinical trials.”

An interesting in vivo study was published in March of 2002 by researchers in Japan, who were studying various acetogenins found in several species of plants. They inoculated mice with lung cancer cells. One-third received nothing (the control group), one-third received the chemotherapy drug adriamycin, and one-third received the main graviola acetogenin, annonacin (at a dosage of 10 mg/kg). At the end of two weeks, five of the six in the untreated control group were still alive, and lung tumour sizes were then measured. The adriamycin group showed a 54.6% reduction of tumour mass over the control group—but 50% of the animals had died from toxicity (three of six). The mice receiving annonacin were all still alive, and the tumours were inhibited by 57.9%—slightly better than adriamycin—and without toxicity. This led the researchers to summarize; “This suggested that annonacin was less toxic in mice. On considering the antitumor activity and toxicity, annonacin might be used as a lead to develop a potential anticancer agent.”

Dosage (Divided Daily)

Dried Powder: 3,000 – 6,000mg

Dried Extract: 1,000 – 3,000mg (20:1)

• Tincture: 6 – 12mL (4:1)

Contraindications

Women who are pregnant or breastfeeding should avoid Graviola use

People with low blood pressure should avoid Graviola use

Side effects

Large dosages can cause nausea and vomiting.

Long-term use may modify bowel flora

Interactions with other drugs

Avoid combining with ATP-enhancers like CoQ10.


Buy Graviola Loose Powder or Capsules
Dried Graviola Powder

 Bibliography
  1. Herbalpedia (2013)
  2. Taylor, L. (2005). The healing power of rainforest herbs: a guide to understanding and using herbal medicinals. Garden City Park, NY: Square One Publishers.

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