CUPUACU FRUIT

Cupuacu is extremely popular in South America, especially Brazil, and is poised to become the next big super fruit to hit the U.S. Some nutritional food experts are saying that it will eclipse the popular Acai because it’s healthier, has the same benefits, and is easier to grow without destroying rainforests.

Cupuacu is a tropical fruit (or is it a nut?) that is similar to the cacao nut (or is it fruit?) According to those in the know, Cupauacu smells like a cross between chocolate and pineapple and tastes like pear mixed with banana. The pulp is rich in fatty materials (similar to cocoa butter) that make it an excellent moisturizer. In addition, research has shown that the seeds contain no less than nine known antioxidants (warning this list of chemical names may make your head spin just a little bit).

The fruits are about the size of a medium-sized watermelon and become ripe from January to April, during the rainy season. These are gathered, split open, and the pulp is made into juice, ice cream, jam, tarts, smoothies and more. These are considered delicacies in many of the larger cities of South America, such as Rio, and are sold in shops of all description

Cupuacu is a tree that grows in the rainforest canopy in South America with the Latin name Theobroma Grandiflorum. The Cupuaçu belongs to the cocoa family and grows to a height of 12-20 meters (30-65 feet). The fruit of the tree, which is called by the same name, has been a primary food source for natives in the rainforest for centuries and has a creamy, exotic pulp at the center of a large melon.Cupuacu is a tree that grows in the rainforest canopy in South America with the Latin name Theobroma Grandiflorum. The Cupuaçu belongs to the cocoa family and grows to a height of 12-20 meters (30-65 feet). The fruit of the tree, which is called by the same name, has been a primary food source for natives in the rainforest for centuries and has a creamy, exotic pulp at the center of a large melon.

Cupuacu Tree.

The fruits are about the size of a medium-sized watermelon and become ripe from January to April, during the rainy season. These are gathered, split open, and the pulp is made into juice, ice cream, jam, tarts, smoothies and more. These are considered delicacies in many of the larger cities of South America, such as Rio, and are sold in shops of all description.
Traditionally it has been cultivated and used by indigenous peoples for centuries. Nutritionally, Cupuacu is very compact and full. The ìbeansî (seeds) were often given to people to chew to cure abdominal pains and the juice would be blessed by shamans and given to pregnant women, newlyweds who wanted children, and others for various maladies.
Cupuacu came to the attention of many westerners when a Japanese company attempted to trademark the name of the tree and fruit as well as the term ìCupulateî to sell as a chocolate coffee-like drink. Brazil finally declared Cupuacu to be the national fruit and the name to be ineligible for trademark.

There are many health benefits to Cupuacu, most of which are tied to the fruit’s extremely potent phytonutrient polyphenols, anti-oxidants, essential nutrients, vitamins, and others mentioned earlier.

It’s primary health benefit is stimulating the immune system while simultaneously supporting the body’s ability to fight disease. Cupuacu has a caffeine-like effect, but does not contain caffeine. It is one of the few cocoa relatives that does not, yet it retains this energetic effect.

Most of the benefits of Cupuacu are synergistic. For instance, the energy-boosting effect mentioned comes primarily as a result of the fruit’s heightening of the immune system, lowering of blood pressure, and the body-boosting effects of the fast-acting nutrients and vitamins from the fruit. Unlike most energy drinks or caffeine, however, there is no ìdownî with Cupuacu. No tired feeling afterwards.

Still more synergistic effects include healthier skin and hair, lowered cholesterol levels (through lipid peroxidation inhibition), and better libido. These are some of the better benefits of the Cupuacu fruit.

Another huge benefit of the fruit is its extremely rich array and concentration of antioxidants. These have a large number of longer-term effects on the body including (and possibly most importantly) the neutralization of free radicals in the body’s tissues. The improved circulation and lowered blood pressure mentioned already aid in this process of eliminating those free radicals.

Others of these antioxidants are what help lower cholesterol levels, improve brain function, and more. Many of the essential vitamins and minerals are boosters for the gastro-intestinal system (explaining the fruit’s use by natives for GI problems) as well as a healthier cardio-vascular system.

Nutrition Facts
For a Serving Size of 16 oz (448g)
Calories 250 Calories from Fat 22.5 (9%)
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 2.5g
Sodium 0mg 0%
Carbohydrates 52g
Net carbs 50g
Fiber 2g 9%
Protein 6g
Vitamins and minerals
Vitamin A 0μg 0%
Vitamin C 0mg 0%
Calcium 0mg 0%
Iron 0mg 0%
Fatty acids
Amino acids
* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs.

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