What if I told you there is a food that has the ability to treat certain types of cancer, kill off parasites, help relieve pain, and taste good all at once? Sounds too good to be true, right?

The first time I heard about a soursop was actually at a Spanish paella restaurant in Tegucigalpa, Honduras. Weird, huh? I read “jugo de guanabana” on the menu (which means soursop juice in Spanish), and I asked the waiter about it. I ordered a glass and felt the freshness and juiciness with every sip. It was a hot day and the juice was exactly what I needed. 

As the nerdy person that I am, I pulled up my phone and instantly Googled “what is soursop?” I began to read about its high antioxidant content, its cancer curative skills, and culinary capacity. Suddenly, that underrated tropical fruit became really familiar to me. 

Health Benefits Of Soursop  

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Lissane Kafie

1. Antioxidant Benefits

The soursop has phytonutrients (high in antioxidants) that help fight diseases and even tumors by neutralizing free radicals in the body. These antioxidants help prevent you from getting sick. The best way to receive them is by eating the foods that have them. Win, win, am I right?

2. Cancer-Fighting Capacity 

The cancer-fighting capacity of soursop is again linked to its antioxidant benefits. The main reason that the soursop fruit has cancer-fighting skills is due to the acetogenins unique to the Annonanaceae family (fancy way of saying the soursop family). Studies have shown that the acetogenins present in the fruit are important compounds in cancer prevention. And, yes, you can get all these benefits by consuming the soursop fruit. 

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Lissane Kafie

3. Anti-Inflammatory Abilities

A home remedy that’s believed to treat arthritis, joint pain, or muscle pain is rubbing a concoction of soursop leaves on the affected area. It is believed that soursop aids in relieving inflammation, healing, lessening pain, and improving flexibility in certain areas. Soursop tea is also believed to be a great anti-inflammatory herbal remedy. As I was researching this, I just imagined an 80-year-old version of me talking about soursop home remedies with my grandchildren. It was kinda creepy. 

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Lissane Kafie

4. Skin Health

Nobody wants wrinkles, am I right? Soursop is also believed to help reduce wrinkles and stretch marks. Its rich vitamin-C content plays an important role in anti-aging, thus becoming a great skin treatment and anti-aging component. Also, because of its high antioxidant content and ability to fight free radicals, this fruit is great for avoiding the signs of aging. Eat up! 

Its Use in Recipes

For the most part, the soursop fruit is used to make juice, popsicles, ice cream, or sorbet. (A big glass of "jugo de guanabana" or a cup of "nieve de guanabana"—aka soursop juice and soursop sorbet—are crucial on a hot summer day in Honduras). It's also great for making desserts such as soursop mousses, pies, tarts, and cakes. You can also eat it up freshly cut, or freeze it for later use if you prefer. 

If all these health benefits of soursop and its extraordinary culinary potential aren't enough to convince you to eat this underrated tropical fruit, then I don't know what will. After trying it out, you'll never wonder what is soursop again in your life.