Cherimoya – Benefits & Home Remedies for Skin, Hair & Health

Cherimoya is a tropical fruit. It belongs to the plant family known as Annonaceae. This edible fruit has a very creamy texture and distinct custard-like taste. It is probably why this fruit was called “the most delicious fruit known to men” by Mark Twain. Thought to be native to places like Columbia and Bolivia, today, this fruit is cultivated in many tropical areas of the world.

This fruit is most commonly known as custard apple. The way of identifying cherimoya is by taking note of its typical shape and colour. Ripe cherimoya fruits are heart-shaped and quite soft on the inside. The skin of the fruit will appear scaly with overlapping leaf-like structures. It does contain many seeds which can be easily detected and are not edible. 

NUTRITIONAL VALUE (PER 100 GRAMS)

Energy 75 kcal
Carbohydrates 17.1 g
Protein 1.57 g
Fat 0.68 g
Dietary fibre  3 g
Folates  23 µg
Vitamin E 0.27 mg
Vitamin A 5 IU
Vitamin C 12.6 mg
Niacin  0.644 mg
Riboflavin  0.131 mg
Sodium  7 mg
Potassium  287 mg
Calcium  10 mg
Iron  0.27 mg
Magnesium  17 mg
Phosphorus  26 mg
Zinc  0.16 mg

CHERIMOYA FOR SKIN

  • Helps to restore the natural glow of the skin: Cherimoya has a good amount of vitamin C in it. This makes it an excellent nutritional fruit for the skin. Eating it on regular basis ensures that the skin remains healthy. The vitamin C present in it helps to restore the natural glow of the skin.
  • Detoxifies the skin: Cherimoya is a rich source of anti-oxidants. This helps to detoxify the skin from within. Its antioxidant content helps to destroy the free radicals present in the body. These free radicals accelerate the occurrence of skin issues like wrinkles, acne, and pigmentation and also promote premature ageing. Cherimoya helps to fight all these skin issues.
  • Boosts collagen production: The nutritional content of cherimoya also helps to boost collagen production within the body. Collagen is a kind of protein that is extremely important for maintaining the elasticity of the skin. Collagen helps in keeping the skin firm and supple and thus delay signs of ageing.
  • Reduces pigmentation: Regular consumption of cherimoya helps to fight pigmentation. Pigmentation could occur due to many factors like acne, sun exposure and improper nutrition. The nutrients and vitamins present in cherimoya help to improve the formation of new skin cells. This in turn helps to get rid of the damaged skin cells which are pigmented. 

Cherimoya face mask for dry skin

You will need:

  • 3 tablespoons of cherimoya pulp
  • 2 tablespoons of rose water.
  • 1 tablespoon of coconut oil

How to:

  1. Add the rose water to the pulp of the fruit.
  2. Mix until well combined.
  3. Now add the coconut oil and mix until a smooth paste is formed.
  4. Wash your face with a mild cleanser and apply this face mask on the clean face.
  5. Let it stay on the face for at least 30 minutes.
  6. Rinse off with lukewarm water.
  7. Follow up with a moisturiser.
  8. You can do this remedy twice a week to keep your skin hydrated.

For oily skin:

You will need:

  • 2 tablespoons of cherimoya pulp
  • 2 tablespoons of fuller’s earth
  • 3-4 tablespoons of rose water

How to:

  1. Mix the rose water with the fuller’s earth.
  2. Mix well until a paste is formed.
  3. Now add the fruit pulp and mix well.
  4. Apply this paste onto your clean face.
  5. Let it dry. This will take about 30 minutes.
  6. Now remove the face mask using a wet towel. 
  7. Follow up with a gel-based moisturiser.
  8. You can do this remedy twice a week to keep your pores clean.

For pigmented skin

You will need: 

  • 2 tablespoons of cherimoya pulp
  • 2 tablespoons of orange peel powder
  • 1 tablespoon of lemon juice
  • 5-6 tablespoons of water.

How to:

  1. Simply combine all the ingredients together.
  2. Mix well until a smooth paste is formed.
  3. Apply this paste onto your clean face for at least 30 minutes.
  4. Rinse off with cold water.
  5. Follow up with a moisturiser. 
  6. You can do this remedy every alternate day to get rid of pigmentation and suntan.

CHERIMOYA FOR HAIR

We subject our hair to a lot of damage on a daily basis. Most people forget that to ensure proper growth, the nourishment we provide to our hair is very important. Our diets mostly lack nutrients like protein and vitamins which nourish our scalp and promote hair health. 

Cherimoya, however, can help in overcoming such deficiencies and promote hair health.

  • Fighting hair lice 

In many places, unripe cherimoya fruit is dried and powdered. This powder is applied onto the hair in order to fight lice and nits. The growth of hair lice can be very detrimental to hair health as this problem prevents hair growth, causes hair fall and itching. 

  • Promoting hair growth 

There are many minerals present in this fruit. The presence of zinc and magnesium helps to accelerate hair growth and prevent them from breaking. These minerals help to strengthen the hair follicles and help the scalp to produce its own healthy sebum to nourish the hair roots.

  • Makes the hair thicker and voluminous

Cherimoya fruit has immense benefits when it comes to collagen production. The high level of vitamin C present in this fruit helps to boost the formation of collagen which in turn helps the hair to grow out thicker and stronger. The presence of collagen also prevents early breaking of hair and they are able to withstand factors like pollution, heat and chemical damage.

  • Helps to hydrate the hair

Cherimoya seed oil can be applied onto the hair lengths to provide them with intense moisture. This property helps to fight frizz and with regular use, hair turns shiny and seem much more manageable.

  • Prevents grey hair

In some individuals, grey hair can be caused due to genetic predispositions. However, if the main cause of grey hair is nutritional deficiency, then cherimoya can prove to be helpful. It contains copper and potassium. Both these minerals help to maintain the natural colour of the hair and delay the occurrence of grey hair.

Cherimoya Hair mask for all hair types:

You will need:

  • Pulp of one ripe cherimoya fruit (de-seeded)
  • 2 tablespoons of your regular hair conditioner
  • 5-6 tablespoons of coconut oil
  • 4 tablespoons of curd

How to:

  1. Pour the fruit pulp and the coconut oil into a blender.
  2. Blend on low speed for 30 seconds or until a smooth paste is formed.
  3. Get this paste out in a bowl.
  4. Add the conditioner and curd to it. 
  5. Mix until all the ingredients are well combined. There should be no lumps.
  6. Apply this hair mask onto the ends of your hair. Do not apply on the scalp.
  7. Massage well for at least 20 minutes.
  8. Wrap your hair into a bun and cover with a shower cap.
  9. Allow the hair mask to condition the hair for at least 30-40 minutes.
  10. Wash using normal water.
  11. Then shampoo your hair as usual.
  12. You can apply this hair mask every time before washing your hair to restore their natural shine and eliminate frizz.

Hair mask for dandruff

You will need:

  • Pulp of one ripe cherimoya fruit.
  • 1 teaspoon of tea tree oil
  • 1 teaspoon of lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons of Neem powder.

How to:

  1. Add all the ingredients into a blender.
  2. Blend on high speed for 15 seconds.
  3. Take the paste out into a bowl and apply onto your scalp.
  4. Massage the paste into your scalp for at least 10 minutes.
  5. Tie up your hair and cover with a shower cap.
  6. Let the mask work for 15 to 20 minutes.
  7. Rinse with warm water and then shampoo as usual.
  8. Repeat this remedy once a week to get rid of dandruff and itchy scalp.

CHERIMOYA FOR HEALTH

  • Helps in reducing muscle ache

Cherimoya contains a high amount of potassium. Potassium helps to reduce muscle pain and makes the muscles stronger. This property can be very beneficial for women who experience menstrual cramps. Regular intake of cherimoya, especially during those days can help to reduce menstrual cramps. 

For those who have an intense workout routine, including cherimoya in the diet can help to repair muscle damage much faster.

  • Improves digestion

Cherimoya contains a good amount of fibre. Having one cherimoya a day can help to meet the daily fibre requirements of our body. Fibre is extremely essential in maintaining the health of the digestive system. Hence regular consumption of cherimoya can help to improve digestion and overcome problems like bloating, indigestion and acidity.

  • Provides protection from cancer

The antioxidants present in cherimoya help to eliminate free radicals from the body. These free radicals are extremely harmful as they can potentially damage the DNA of the cells and lead to cancerous growths. The leaves of the Cherimoya plant are used for the treatment of cancer since they contain acetogenic compounds.

  • Keeps the heart healthy

The vitamin C present in cherimoya helps in reducing the level of bad cholesterol in the blood. The sodium and potassium content helps to regulate the heart rate and prevent hypertension. The fibre present in it helps to absorb the cholesterol present in the gut. The antioxidants it contains also help to protect the heart from the harmful effects of free radicals.

Cherimoya smoothie

You will need:

  • Pulp of 1 ripe cherimoya fruit (de-seeded)
  • 2 tablespoons of chia seeds
  • 1 cup of berries (any of your preference)
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla essence
  • 2 tablespoons of honey
  • 1 ripe banana
  • 1 cup of coconut water.

How to:

  1. Add all the ingredients into a blender.
  2. Blend on high speed for 30 minutes.
  3. You may add more coconut water if the smoothie is too thick for you.
  4. Pour the smoothie into a glass and garnish with a few additional berries and chia seeds.
  5. This smoothie has high antioxidant content and a good amount of fibre. Have this smoothie at least 2-3 times a week to notice significant improvements in your health. 
  6. To convert this into a salad dressing, simply remove coconut water from the list of ingredients.

MYTHS AND FACTS

Myths  Facts 
Cherimoya is high in calories. Per 100 grams of cherimoya contains only 75 kcal which is a very healthy amount. The sugar content of this fruit is also very low.
Eating cherimoyas can cause paralysis. The fruit is extremely safe to consume. However, the bark extracts of the plant can cause paralysis if injected. But the fruit itself will cause no such reaction.

PRECAUTIONS

  • If you have never had this fruit before, consume it in smaller amounts. Some people are known to have allergic reactions like rashes and itching when consuming the fruit. Make sure you don’t have any such allergies.
  • This fruit should be avoided by pregnant women.
  • Do not consume the seeds of this fruit or add them to make the smoothie. The seeds are known to contain toxic substances which can cause discomfort.
  • People already suffering from any neurological diseases must avoid the fruit since it is known to contain enzymes and chemicals which can aggravate the symptoms.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Why is cherimoya known as the “ice cream fruit”?

Cherimoya has a creamy custard-like texture with a sweet taste. It is usually chilled before eating and can be directly scooped out with a spoon. This is why it is known as the ice cream fruit.

How to know if the fruit is ripe?

It is very easy to distinguish between a ripe and unripe cherimoya. All you have to do is squeeze the fruit gently. If it seems soft and tender then it is ripe. However, if it seems hard upon squeezing then it is not ripe.

How should its skin be removed?

There is no need to peel the fruit. Simply place both your hands around the ripe fruit and twist it gently. The fruit will break from the middle. You may even use a knife to cut it. Scoop out the pulp from the fruit and have it directly.

Make sure you throw away the seeds.

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