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How Camu Camu or Myrciaria dubia benefits were found?

Camu Camu or Myrciaria dubia is a wild plant of the Amazonian rain forest of Peru. Purplish red-skinned Camu Camu is the largest berry with yellowish pulp. The vitamin C content of this fruit is highest than any other natural source. This natural vitamin C source is now exported from wild sources for commercial medicinal and dietary supplement preparations.

In 1996, Gary Null, a well-known nutritionist, and the researcher had described many medicinal benefits of this herb. His 'Clinician’s Handbook of Natural Healing 'published in 1998, had mentioned several health benefits, such as the strengthening of immune functioning, healthy eye, skin, and gum can be obtained by Camu camu intake. According to Null, among nineteen mood-boosting herbs, Camu Camu is in the second position. Not only high vitamin C, but other phytonutrients also work together and exerts multiple medicinal properties. [1]

What are the phytochemicals present in Camu Camu or Myrciaria dubia?

The fruits are fibrous due to the presence of pectin and starch in it. Flavonoids, lignans, phenolic acids, stilbenes, and tannins are the different present in this fruit. Other significant compounds include a variety of organic acids, such as malic acid, citric acid, and isocitric acid. The fatty acid content of this fruit includes linoleic, oleic and stearic acid. Camu Camu fruits also have twenty-one volatile components. The mixed form of anthocyanin content is also evident in Camu Camu fruit. [2]

Phytochemical Present in Camu Camu | HealthSoul

What is the Mode of action of Camu Camu or Myrciaria dubia health benefits?

High vitamin C containing Camu Camu fruit juice has potent antioxidant properties. It reduces the free radical burden. It also has a strong anti-inflammatory effect, which is effective to reduce C reactive protein levels in blood plasma. Not only vitamin C, but other phytochemicals like proanthocyanidins, ellagitannins, and ellagic acid, which all are polyphenols derivatives are also responsible for its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant property. The researcher also found that casuarinin and stachyurin are two phytochemicals along with other tannins composition also responsible for its antioxidant properties. An animal research study reported that the ingestion of Camu Camu can prevent genotoxic damage due to its strong antioxidant properties. [3]

Phenolic acid, flavonoids, and tannins present in Camu Camu fruit are effective to inhibit α-amylase and α-glucosidase enzyme activity, which are responsible for carbohydrate digestion. Thus, it is effective to manage type II diabetes and associated cardiovascular complications. [4]

Camu Camu has potent antioxidant properties as it follows diverse mechanisms like improving antioxidant capacity in blood plasma, increases different antioxidant enzymes like catalase, glutathione peroxidase, and superoxide dismutase activities in the liver. It also reduces acid reactive substances to induces the antioxidant effect. [5]

Camu Camu fruit extract blended with fish supplement significantly improves immunological response by increasing the number of white blood cells, lysozyme activity within 5 weeks of treatment, which overall improves the immunological effect of the body. [5]

What are the different forms of Camu Camu or Myrciaria dubia?

Camu Camu is a very sour taste fruit. Most of the people unable to intake this fruit due to its unpleasant taste. Usually, commercially available puree, juice, and pulp of this fruit are sold out by mixing with other fruit juice or sweetening agent to improve its taste.  

Camu Camu powder form is available as dietary supplements. This powder can be mixed with other food items like salad preparation, fruit smoothie preparation, etc. to mask the taste of this fruit. Camu Camu extract is also available in the market or online shopping option. [6]

Different Forms of Camu Camu | HealthSoul

Camu Camu Uses

Infection Control

Streptococcus mutans and Streptococcus sanguinis are two strains of bacteria that are widely found in oral flora during oral infection. Experts expected that Camu camu fruit pulp can be a promising toothpaste ingredient to protect against these bacterial strains due to its antibacterial property. An experimental trial also showed the efficacy of Camu Camu against these bacterial infections. [7]

The strong antibacterial effect of Camu Camu effective treatment caused by S. aureus bacterial pathogen. Research study has found the efficacy of this herbal ingredient is the same as Ampicillin (conventional penicillin group of antibiotics). [4]

Camu Camu Uses | HealthSoul

Lipid Profile Improvement

Camu Camu is an effective treatment for dyslipidemia. It reduces triacylglycerols, total cholesterol level, low-density lipoprotein (LDL) and very-low-density lipoprotein (VLDL) level with increase high-density lipoprotein (HDL) level. A preclinical trial result showed oral administration of pulp of Camu Camu fruit is significantly reduces triacylglycerols and total cholesterol levels, and an increase in HDL cholesterol in diabetic rats. This indicates diabetes-associated dyslipidemia can be well managed by the intake of Camu Camu fruit.

Not only animal research, but a human trial result also showed intake of encapsulated freeze-dried pulp or raw pulp nectar of Camu Camu significantly improves lipid profile, which confirms it has a hypolipidemic effect. [5]

Obesity Treatment

The cholesterol-lowering effect of Camu Camu by decreasing triacylglycerols, total cholesterol, and hepatic cholesterol level is improved lipid profile. Intake of Camu Camu dosage forms can increase the excretion of cholesterol through defecation. A preclinical trial result reported regular 25 ml of Camu Camu fruit pulp ingestion for 12 weeks significantly reduces the weight by reducing white adipose tissue fat content. [5]

Management and Prevention of Type II Diabetes Associated Cardiac Problem

The α-amylase and α-glucosidase enzyme inhibitory effect of Camu Camu is an effective measure to manage type 2 diabetes levels. This benefit of this herb also prevents high blood sugar induced cardiac health issues. [4]

Camu Camu fruit is a fibrous fruit. The high, natural fiber content of this fruit is therapeutically potential to reduce the glucose absorption, intestinal transit time, which consequently effective to reduce glycemic condition and cholesterol level. Thus, Camu Camu is very health benefits for diabetic patients not only for controlling blood sugar levels, but also prevent dyslipidemia and cardiac diseases. [8]

Genetic Damage and Anti-Cancer Effect

Camu Camu fruit is effective against DNA damage. An in-vivo model study described the antimutagenic effect of Camu Camu and explained this herb has a cytoprotective effect. These benefits are effective against cancer protection. An experimental research study showed a herbal dosage form formulated by Camu Camu fruit pulp and the peel is effective against colorectal cancer. [5]

Hepatoprotective

Liver toxicity is exposure to the chemical is a very common health issue. An experimental research study reported Camu Camu fruit juice ingestion is effective against chemical-induced liver damage. However, the detailed mechanism of action is yet undiscovered. [5]

Neuroprotective Effect

Researchers also expected that peel, seeds, and pulp of Camu camu fruit have neuroprotective effects, which may effective against Parkinson's disease and Alzheimer's disease. Experts concluded from the research studies that due to the presence of polar acidic low molecular weight bioactive fractions in this fruit is provided this benefit. [9]

Camu Camu Side Effects

The upper limit of vitamin C intake per day is 2000 mg. Camu Camu is an excellent source of vitamin C. Therefore, individuals need to very careful about vitamin C intake. Excess vitamin C can cause heartburn, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, insomnia, headache, abdominal pain, etc.

When Should I Avoid to Take Camu Camu?

Due to a lack of safety data, experts suggested not to take this fruit supplement during pregnancy, and lactation. Kidney patients should not take Camu Camu without medical supervision. Immediate medical assistance may require in case of worsening of the condition.  

Cancer patients who are undertaking chemotherapy should not intake this herbal remedial substance, as excessive vitamin C content can reduce the efficacy of the chemotherapy. [10]

Camu Camu Side Effects | HealthSoul

References

1. CAMU-CAMU (MYRCIARIA DUBIA).

2. Antioxidant and Associated Capacities of Camu Camu (Myrciaria dubia): A Systematic Review.

3. Bioactive Compounds and Extracts from Traditional Herbs and Their Potential Anti-Inflammatory Health Effects

4. Evaluation of phenolic-linked bioactives of camu-camu (Myrciaria dubia Mc. Vaugh) for antihyperglycemia, antihypertension, antimicrobial properties and cellular rejuvenation.

5. Myrciaria dubia"Camu camu" Fruit: Health Promoting Phytochemicals and Functional Genomic Characteristics

6. Seven Evidence-Based Health Benefits of Camu Camu.

7. Antibacterial activity of Myrciaria dubia (Camu camu) against Streptococcus mutans and Streptococcus sanguinis.

8. ANTIOXIDANT CAPACIDANT AND BIOACTIVE COMPOUNDS AND HEALTH BENEFITS OF CAMU-CAMU PUREE (Myrciaria dubia (H.B.K) Mc Vaugh).

9. Neuroprotective effects of dried camu-camu (Myrciaria dubia HBK McVaugh) residue in C. elegans

10.  Camu Camu: Benefits, Side Effects & Dosage.

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