What is Soursop – Health Benefits and Nutrition Facts
Soursop is an unusually shaped fruit that is famous for its tasty flavor and amazing health benefits. It provides a good amount of nutrients, fiber, and vitamin C with very low calories. Here is an article with all you need to know about soursop benefits, side effects, and nutrition facts.
What is Soursop?
Soursop is also known as graviola. It is a green-colored, unusually shaped fruit that is native to the tropical regions of America. It belongs to the custard apple family. It has ridges present on the outside and juicy flesh inside. This green fruit has a strong flavor and creamy texture.
Soursop resembles strawberry or pineapple in terms of flavor and appearance. The juicy white flesh of the fruit has small black seeds that are inedible as they are toxic in nature. The skin of soursop is also inedible and contains prickles that can be broken off easily.
The soft and juicy flesh inside the soursop is nutritious and has a sweet acidic taste. It has a creamy texture due to which it is often used in ice creams, beverages, and other creamy sweet foods.
Nutrition Facts of Soursop
Soursop is rich in nutrients. According to USDA, one cup serving (225g) of soursop contains the below-mentioned nutrients (Source).
- Calories – 148
- Carbohydrates – 37.9g
- Sugars – 30.5g
- Fiber – 7.4g
- Protein – 2.3g
- Fat – 0.7g
- Potassium – 626mg
- Vitamin C – 46.4mg
- Sodium – 31.5mg
Soursop is not a rich source of protein. A 225g serving of soursop contains around 2.3 grams protein.
Soursop contains a remarkable amount of carbs, and they are due to the naturally-occurring sugars. A single serving has 38-gram carbs and around 7 grams of fiber. The best part is that this fruit has a low glycemic index.
Vitamins and Minerals
Soursop is loaded with micronutrients. It is a rich source of vitamin C and is highly beneficial to support the immune system. It also contains potassium, which helps in rapid workout recovery and blood pressure regulation.
Soursop also contains iron, niacin, folate, and riboflavin in small amounts. Many parts of this fruit are popularly used for medicinal purposes. It is used for the purpose of cooking and can also be applied to the skin.
Health Benefits of Soursop
Soursop is popularly known for its health benefits. For instance, graviola tea that is made from leaves is used to treat infections that lead to cold symptoms. It is one of the famous soursop leaves benefits.
Below mentioned are some common health benefits of soursop.
Rich in Antioxidants
Soursop is loaded with antioxidants that contribute to most of the reported health benefits. Antioxidants help in neutralizing harmful compounds known as free radicals. These compounds lead to cell damage.
Various studies present evidence that antioxidants can help in lowering the risk of various diseases, including diabetes, heart disease, and cancer (Source).
Antioxidants present in soursop helps in preventing damage to cells. It also contains various compounds that act as antioxidants, including tangeretin, quercetin, and luteolin.
Further research is required to analyze the benefits of antioxidants present in soursop.
Helps Fighting Bacteria
Various test-tube studies present evidence that soursop contains certain antibacterial properties that might be effective in fighting strains of bacteria that lead to different diseases. However, more study is required in this regard.
In certain test-tube studies, soursop was found effective in killing different types of bacteria, including the ones that cause tooth decay, yeast infections, and gingivitis.
It is essential to keep in mind that these results are attained from test-tube studies. More studies are required to understand the antibacterial effects of soursop in humans.
Soursop is an amazing source of antioxidants, which help in combating inflammation. It also helps the body to repair cell damage.
Some animal studies present the evidence that soursop and the components present in it might help in fighting inflammation.
Inflammation is the immune response of our body to injury. It is important to understand that the evidence is presented through animal studies, so more research is required in this regard.
Might Kill Cancer Cells
Some test-tube studies show that soursop can help in eliminating cancer cells. Certain studies show that soursop fruit, tree’s roots, leaves, and bark contain the potential to combat non-malignant diseases and cancer.
However, there is a lack of human data that supports the claim. More studies are needed to evaluate the effects of soursop in combating cancer in humans.
Helps in Stabilizing Blood Sugar Levels
Certain animal studies have shown that soursop helps in regulating blood sugar levels. They show that it can remarkably reduce the levels of blood sugar. However, more human studies are needed to find the benefits of soursop for controlling blood sugar levels in humans.
Encourages Digestive Health
Soursop contains high fiber content, which might help in promoting digestive health. The juice of soursop can act as a diuretic and help clean the gastrointestinal tract by flushing out the excess sodium present in the body.
Adverse Effects of Soursop
Soursop offers a wide range of health benefits. However, you should avoid consuming soursop if you have any of the below mentioned.
- You have kidney disease
- You have liver issues
- You have the problem of diabetes.
- You are taking medicines to reduce hypertension.
How to Prepare
Soursop is used as a popular ingredient in sorbets and ice creams due to its creamy texture. It is famously used in South America and can be consumed in a wide range of ways.
The juicy flesh of soursop can be used in smoothies. It is even used to sweeten food items that are baked.
Due to its naturally sweet and strong taste, it is often consumed raw.
When buying soursop fruit, choose the ones that are soft and allow it to ripen for some days before eating. In order to consume it, cut it lengthwise, remove the seeds, and take out the flesh and enjoy it.
Always keep in mind to avoid the seeds of soursop as they are shown to have neurotoxin, annonacin, and might contribute to Parkinson’s disease.
Animal and test-tube studies present evidence regarding promising results associated with the potential health benefits of soursop. However, more studies are needed to prove these benefits to humans.
Soursop is yummy, versatile, and can be an amazing addition to your food. When it is combined with a healthy lifestyle and balanced diet, this fruit renders impressive health benefits.