Natural Home Cures Freeze Dried Rich Pericarp Mangosteen - May Help With Your Cancer
In 2015, in the United States, it is projected that there will be approximately 1,658,370 new cancer cases and 589,430 deaths from cancer.(1), (2) Evidently, millions of people are suffering and dying but medical science has yet to figure out how to definitively treat this terminal illness. A lot of concoctions and purported treatment protocols have come introduced in the market claiming they can cure cancer; however, it is mangosteen that stands out from the crowd and is believed to hold the key to the prevention and treatment of cancer. Is this pure hype and nothing more than wishful thinking or is there real truth behind this?
Mangosteen's Anti-Cancer Properties
Since the turn of the millennium, mangosteen has been the subject of numerous laboratory studies, both in the United States and across Asia. A majority of the studies and research have shown that the phytochemicals in mangosteen, particularly the xanthones, exhibit some remarkable anti-cancer properties such as the ability to shrink tumors,(3) prevent the proliferation or metastasis of cancer cells(4) and the ability to trigger programmed cell death (apoptosis) for certain types of cancer.(5) Other notable biologic activities include antibacterial, antifungal, antiviral and anti-inflammatory. If you are an oncologist or a cancer patient, you will find that this is quite an impressive list and the reason why mangosteen has received much acclaim in the fight against cancer.
Xanthones are the major components of mangosteen. It is believed that the antioxidant properties of xanthones can aid in cancer treatment and potentially prevent the dreaded disease.(6) To date, scientists have discovered more than 56+ different types of xanthones in mangosteen. Among the more notable types of xanthones found in mangosteen are alpha-Mangostin, beta-Mangostin, 3-Isomangostin, Mangostanol, Gertanin, Garcinone A, Garcinone B, Garcinone C, Garcinone D, Garcinone E, and Maclurin. Mangosteen ranks very high in a new laboratory procedure called Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity or ORAC.(7) It has been revealed that, compared to other fruits and vegetables, mangosteen has 20 to 30 times the ability to absorb harmful free radicals.(8)
A free radical is a molecular structure containing an unpaired electron. It has the ability to destroy proteins, enzymes or even individual cells. To further complicate matters, free radicals can multiply through a chain reaction mechanism that results in the production of thousands of these so-called ‘cellular oxidants’. When this occurs, cells can be damaged and DNA codes can be modified, resulting in mutations and the body’s immune response could be compromised. On this scale, contact with a free radical or oxidant can create cellular degeneration, resulting in diseases like cancer. It is for this particular reason that xanthones have become very important as these compounds are among the most powerful antioxidants known to man. The rationale is quite simple, if xanthones can rid the body of free radicals then to a certain extent it provides protection against the eventual development of certain forms of cancer that are triggered by free radical damage.
The highly potent antioxidant and cytotoxic properties of mangosteen are among the cornerstones in its ability to fight off cancer cells. As previously noted, free radicals can cause damage to the body on the cellular level.(9) They are capable of damaging genetic material (DNA) that can alter normal cell functions and replication, leading to the proliferation of aberrant cells that ultimately become tumors.(10) In addition, the antibacterial and antiviral properties of mangosteen also contribute to the protection of genetic material, as certain strains of bacteria and viruses are known to cause malignancy.
Researchers have shown that the xanthones found in the mangosteen have properties against leukemia(11) - a cancer of the blood or bone marrow characterized by an abnormal increase of blood cells, especially white blood cells or leukocytes. To date, this has been one of the most highly acclaimed breakthroughs regarding mangosteen’s enormous potential to alleviate the pain and suffering of millions of cancer patients the world over. As was already mentioned, there are several xanthones that have been studied for their efficacy in treating cancer. A study published in the Journal of Natural Products in 2003 revealed that a number of xanthones from mangosteen successfully managed to inhibit the growth of human leukemia cells.(12) The proponents of the research conducted a follow-up study and they found out that alpha-mangostin is a prime candidate for the prevention and therapeutic application for cancer treatment.
Mangosteen is endemic to Southeast Asia so it is not surprising that the super fruit is being studied extensively in the region. For instance, the Department of Microbiology at Mahidol University in Bangkok conducted a study involving nine different potential anti-cancer foods. It was later discovered that the mangosteen was the most potent in preventing the growth and proliferation of breast cancer cells.(13) In addition, ethanolic extracts from nine Thai medicinal plants were analyzed for their antiproliferative activity against human breast adenocarcinoma cell line using MTT assay. Again, it was found that mangosteen showed the most potent activity against cancerous cells. In a related study by Moongkarndi, the effects of the mangosteen pericarp extract on human breast cancer cells it was found that mangosteen has a huge potential for cancer chemoprevention.(14) More importantly, the group noted that there were no possible side effects on the human body. This is great news for breast cancer patients as chemotherapy typically causes hair loss, nausea and/or vomiting, depression and/or anxiety, diarrhea, menopausal symptoms, among other nasty side effects.
In another study, it has been suggested that the rind of mangosteen might reduce the risk of cancer cell growth in the bowel. The study showed that crude alpha-mangostin has powerful chemopreventive effects in short-term colon carcinogenesis bioassay system, indicating that longer exposure could result in suppression of tumor development.(15) In addition, preliminary studies conducted in 2002 showed that mangosteen has natural anti-inflammatory properties. Two years later, it was discovered that components of the rind could inhibit cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) activity, without inhibiting COX-1 synthesis. COX-2 enzymes are known to cause inflammation while COX-1 enzymes protect the delicate lining of the digestive tract. This means that mangosteen is highly capable of preventing the development of colon cancer among susceptible patients by protecting the mucosal lining of the colon, and the digestive tract as a whole.(16) It also facilitates the absorption of essential nutrients needed by the body to maintain an overall level of wellness.
(1) American Cancer Society - Cancer Facts & Figures