Can soursop leaves cure cancer?

By October 4, 2023 Health, Science, Society

We came across a post on X containing the bold caption, “Cure your cancer with soursop!”. The post contains a video that touts the health benefits of soursop leaves with claims such as soursop leaves being 10,000 times stronger than chemotherapy (presumably to treat cancer) and that it helps with liver and kidney issues.

The video appears to be a TikTok video uploaded by a different user called indigenousherbalist and contains a link to a website called Aztlan Herbal Remedies.

Upon closer look, the TikTok user indigenousherbalist appears to also be the founder of Aztlan Herbal Remedies – a company that sells herbal supplements including soursop leaves.


Properties of soursop

Soursop, which is also known by other names such as guanabana or graviola in other parts of the world, is a fruit that many Singaporeans are likely familiar with. Soursops are high in antioxidants and are a good source of nutrients such as Vitamin C.

While the TikTok video claims that there are studies linking soursop leaves to cancer cures, none appeared to be included in the post.

Are soursop leaves 10,000 times more effective than chemotherapy as a cancer treatment?

According to Medical News Today, soursop has cytotoxic effects on cancer cells, which refers to the ability of a drug to kill cells.

Based on laboratory studies on cells in test tubes and on animal cells, soursop extracts have been shown to kill some types of liver and breast cancer cells. Studies suggest that soursop leaf extracts are cytotoxic to cells in certain cancers such as lung cancer and liver cancer. Additionally, researchers have found that extracts from different parts of the soursop plant, such as from its seeds or stem, are cytotoxic to blood cancer cells.

While soursop extracts seem to offer promising results as cancer treatment based on laboratory studies, there have not been any comprehensive studies conducted on humans to confirm that soursop extracts are indeed safe and effective as cancer treatments.

Furthermore, soursop extracts or teas could interfere with certain medications such as those for diabetes. If taken in large quantities, soursop extracts or teas could also lead to harmful effects resembling those of Parkinson’s disease, such as rigid muscles.

Accordingly, there is no evidence to suggest that soursop leaves can cure cancer or are 10,000 times more effective than chemotherapy in treating cancer.

Overall, further studies are still required to determine if soursop leaves, or soursop extracts are effective cancer treatments. Therefore, the claim that soursop leaves can cure cancer is likely false.

It is always best to consult a medical professional before consuming supplements or beginning alternative treatments, especially those that could potentially interfere with one’s current medications or treatments.

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