What Are The Benefits Of Camu Camu
Camu Camu is one powerhouse of a fruit! It is small, but it is mighty! Peru has touted this fruit as a power immune system optimizer, an energy builder, and a vitality giver for thousands of years now. These days you might be lucky enough to see it pop into smoothie or juice bars, sometimes even in ice cream flavors… but this fruit is so much more than that! It’s a true life giver.
Once you see the nutritional benefits of Camu Camu, it will be something you’ll want in your routine forever! As a daily thing! It certainly has made a difference for many people around the world. And now we get to share it with you!
Background of Camu Camu
Camu Camu is a tart berry that is similar in size to the cherry. It is often a reddish, yellow color. It is native to the Amazon rainforest and grows from a shrub in swampy areas. It’s scientific name is Myrciaria dubia. For thousands of years Peruvians have believed that the power of Camu Camu comes from the rushing waters that it grows alongside!
The benefits of Camu Camu are many. Let’s get into it.
Benefits of Camu Camu
Camu Camu gets you all the daily Vitamin C you need in one serving!
Okay, you read that right. All the Vitamin C you need in one single day can be achieved just by taking one teaspoon a day. One teaspoon gets you over 1000% of your daily Vitamin C needs. Camu Camu is revered as one of the food with the MOST Vitamin C, to scale, in it within the entire planet. Yep, Camu Camu comes in first!
Vitamin C is extremely important for:
-Boosting the immune system
-Repairing the body’s tissues
-Helping with the absorption of iron
2. Camu Camu is a major source of antioxidants
Antioxidants are so important for the body and it’s thought that eating foods high in antioxidants can help our body stay vital and strong for longer! Antioxidants scavenge for free radicals in the body- free radicals can be damaging to cells. True health starts on a cellular level.
The antioxidant makeup of camu camu can be highly beneficial for the body. There have been studies where it shows that taking camu camu can support tissue repair. For instance, in one study they worked with 20 male smokers. It was a one week study that was performed and those who drank 0.3 cups of camu camu juice (this contained 1050 mg of vitamin C) every day had significantly lowered inflammatory markers and oxidative stress like C-reactive protein (CRP).
3. Helps fight free radicals
We know we just covered this in the antioxidants, but it’s cool to picture Camu Camu going to bat for you inside your body. It’s a defender, a crusader for your health! Camu camu has a combination of antioxidants that can support in combating reactive molecules.
Some of the antioxidants you can enjoy from Camu Camu are flavonoids (which help regulate cellular activity), anthocyanins (usually found in blue and purple and red foods), and ellagic acid. Ellagic acid is an interesting one- it can help support in preventing cellular harm and also aids in removing toxins. These, plus the Vitamin C are a tough match for free radicals.
4. Great source of Amino Acids, Phytochemicals and Minerals
The nutritional profile of camu camu is quite impressive. What’s amazing is that you get so much bang for your buck and there is no sugar and such a little bit goes a long way! The downside of something like orange juice is that is has so much sugar in it. Not so with Camu Camu!
Let’s break down some of the amino acids, phytochemicals and minerals within Camu Camu.
Amino Acids- these are organic compounds that act as building blocks of proteins in the body. Amino acids are a part of so many bodily functions, like healing and repair of tissues (both internal and external) as well as initial growth and development within the body. Amino acids also play a role in energy levels and digestion. It is no wonder that many people feel such an energy boost after taking Camu Camu!
Minerals- These help keep our bones, heart, muscles and our brain working optimally. Minerals are needed to go about our daily life. When people are deficient in minerals they experience a vast amount of symptoms like headache and irregular heartbeat and bloating. Eating mineral rich foods like Camu Camu can help.
Phytochemicals- Phytochemicals are found in plant foods. Most phytochemicals act as antioxidants and help with free radical damage as well. It is so important to the gut microbiome to get in as many different phytochemicals as possible. Sometimes that is tough due to sheer volume, but certain powders can help! A teaspoon a day is not bad for most.
5. Can aid in reducing inflammation
Chronic inflammation is tough to live with and can eventually turn into bigger problems. It is so imperative that people load on anti-inflammatory foods to help combat this.
There is a common inflammation-triggering enzyme out there called aldose reductase. It causes all kinds of problems. Because the fruit pulp of camu camu contains ellagic acid (an antioxidant), it can support in inhibiting aldose reductase. Vitamin C in general is really great for helping the body's tissues and we even see benefits in the seeds of camu camu, which contain powerful anti-inflammatory compounds that can help suppress inflammation. (Source)
It is very interesting to see how the massive amounts of Vitamin C paired with the antioxidants of Camu Camu can support in the body repairing itself. Studies have shown that consistent use of Camu Camu, or its equivalent in Vitamin C, can help reduce specific inflammatory markers. (Source)
6. Can help with gut support
Nowadays people are very familiar with how important gut health is. What we want is this lush forest of good bacteria growing within us. It is something we must nurture our entire lives. The last thing we want is bad bacteria populating. The other thing we don’t want to see is poor absorption of nutrients. When this happens people can see a wide array of horrible symptoms.
The Vitamin C in Camu Camu helps us absorb more nutrients like iron. And today, we have many iron deficient people. It could be because they aren’t getting enough of it and it could also be because they aren’t absorbing it properly. The Vitamin C in Camu Camu helps with this!
Also, in a test tube study, we found out that the seeds and peel of this sour berry can reduce bacterial growth of the bacterias Streptococcus mutans and Escherichia coli. Both of which are potentially harmful to the body. (Source)
7. Can help stabilize blood pressure
It is unfortunate that so many people all over the globe are dealing with high blood pressure. High blood pressure can eventually lead to blood clots and/or damaged blood vessels.
There have been two studies that looked at Camu Camu and its effect on blood pressure- they measured the dilation in blood vessels. One of them was a test tube study (in vitro) and one was done on young adult humans. Both of them in favor of Camu Camu for helping to support in healthy dilation of the blood vessels.
For more information on camu camu, check out this analysis here.
8. (Bonus) Ways to Use Camu Camu
Camu Camu is quite versatile! Here are some of the many ways people might get in their daily dose:
-Mixing it into homemade salad dressings
-Adding it to an already sweetened yogurt
-Adding it to smoothies
-Combining it with lucuma in a hot drink
-Taking it dissolved in water as a shot
-Disguised in baked goods
There is nothing like superfoods from the country of the great PERU. Peru has so many gems hidden within its lush forests, soaring peaks, and flowi...