Grumichama: the properties of the Brazilian cherry

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Louise Hay
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In Brazil we can find numerous species of minor exotic fruits, almost unknown to most but excellent from the point of view of beneficial properties for health.


This is the case of the Brazilian cherry and sometimes grumichama, the two most common vulgar names of Eugenia brasiliensis, a tree of the mirtaceae family (related to myrtle and guava) endemic to Brazil, and typical of the Atlantic side of the rainforest.

In addition to being appreciated for the precious wood offering to carpenters and to be a very good one landscape ornament, the grumichama tree offers gods special fruits, even if in the panorama of the exotic fruits they are considered among the rarest (considered an endangered species), similar to cherries, at least in their dark-skinned version (there is also a yellow skin), very juicy and slightly acidic, loved by both men and birds and bats.


It is generally considered a delight to be consumed raw, but thanks to it they also prepare themselves jams, juices, ice creams and liqueurs, also famous in Hawaii where grumichama has been regularly cultivated since the mid-1800s.

Once the central seed is removed, the rest of the fruit is pulp very rich in vitamin C.


 

Grumichama: the Vitamin C and polyphenols

We have all heard at least once that red wine is good for health. In particular, this is due to the polyphenols contained in it, while the alcoholic component is the one that causes potential damage to health.

It is said that the grumichama, considered a "cousin" of more famous superfoods such as açai, camu-camu, guarani and cupuaçu, bring the same benefits of wine without the problems associated with alcohol: the combination of vitamin C and high quality polyphenols gives a very strong anti-aging power, anti free radicals, perfect especially for the elasticity of heart tissues.


While vitamin C is concentrated in the sweet and sour pulp at the same time, the Anthocyanins they are particularly concentrated in the fruit peel purple in color (therefore the fruit must be eaten with the whole peel, well washed) and have a great antioxidant, anti-aging and anticancer potential.

 

More things to know about the fruit of Grumichama

The fruit it is easily damaged and this is the reason why it is not on the market; the juice and dehydrated peel are easier to find it is sold in powder, a veritable mine of polyphenols and other antioxidant active compounds.

The whole fruit is also rich in calcium if compared to other fruits and, according to some research carried out in Honduras, it seems that they have astringent, diuretic and antirheumatic properties (especially the infusion of berries and leaves).


there variety with white, purple pulp, and finally the rarest of all, red. Botanically, the fruit is a globose and oblate berry, and has evident sepals on the opposite side of the petiole, which may recall those of other more common fruits such as medlars, blueberries or myrtle berries.

The compounds contained within the peel and the high antioxidant power are not an exception in members of the genus Eugenia, where we also find pitanga, guyabilla, arazà, pitangatuba, pitomba, pitanguinha, pitangabepa, Rio Grande cherry and other minor berries also known in Brazil for their excellent herbal qualities: rich in ascorbic acid and antioxidants such as anthocyanins or flavonoids, high content of aromatic essential oils with strong antimicrobial, antiviral, antifungal and antibacterial properties.  


 

Acerola is also a fruit similar to cherry and rich in vitamin C useful against the flu

 

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