Graviola is promoted as an alternative cancer treatment. There is not enough reliable evidence that graviola works as a treatment for cancer.
- Graviola is the fruit from trees in the rain forests.
- Claims that graviola can treat cancer are not backed up by research.
- It can cause nerve damage leading to symptoms that are similar to Parkinson’s disease.
Graviola comes from a tree in the rain forests of Africa, South America, and Southeast Asia. It is a common food there.
Its scientific name is Annona muricata. It is also known as custard apple, cherimoya, guanabana, soursop and brazilian paw paw. The active ingredient is a type of plant compound (phytochemical) called annonaceous acetogenins.
People use graviola pulp in juices, smoothies and ice cream.
People in Africa and South America use the bark, leaves, root, and fruits of the graviola tree. They treat infections with viruses or parasites, rheumatism, arthritis, depression, and sickness. We know from research that some graviola extracts can help to treat these conditions.
In laboratory studies, graviola extracts can kill some types of liver and breast cancer cells. These cells are resistant to some chemotherapy drugs. A more recent study showed that graviola pulp extract has an effect on prostate cancer cells in mice. But there have not been any studies in humans. So we don’t know whether it can work as a cancer treatment or not.
Many sites on the internet advertise and promote graviola capsules as a cancer cure. But reputable scientific cancer organisations do not support them.