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Surinam Cherry (Pitanga) Benefits

What Is Surinam Cherry (Pitanga)?

Surinam cherries or Pitanga are wonderful fruits belonging to a species of the Myrtle family. Surinam cherry scientifically termed Eugenia uniflora is an edible tropical fruit that can be found in a variety of colors and is native to South America. It was introduced to other countries like India, Phillippines, Israel, and Bermuda in the early 1900s and now the fruit is also grown in Florida and Hawaii in the US. Surinam cherry is also known as Brazilian cherry, Florida cherry, and cayenne cherry.(1)

Surinam Cherry (Pitanga) Benefits

Surinam cherries have a global shape with vertical ridges. They are packed with essential nutrients, especially vitamins C and A content. The fruit is beneficial for treating or inhibiting the development of various diseases.

What Does Surinam Cherry (Pitanga) Taste Like?

Surinam cherries is delicious and taste somewhat like mango. These fruits can taste sweet or even sour, based on the species and the level of their ripeness. Apart from being one of the tastiest fruits, Surinam cherries are also packed with some of the most essential nutrients that make these fruits quite healthy. Surinam cherry has been used in traditional medication for treating many ailments. So, consuming this fruit regularly will keep you healthy and active.

Nutritional Value Of Surinam Cherry or Pitanga

Surinam cherry or pitanga is highly nutritious and contains potential nutrients that are beneficial for our health. About 173 grams of Surinam cherries offer the following amount of nutrients.

  • Carbohydrates- 13 gram
  • Protein- 1.4 gram
  • Vitamin A– 43 gram
  • Vitamin C– 45.5 mg
  • Riboflavin- 0.1 mg
  • Thiamin- 0.1 mg
  • Niacin- 0.5 mg
  • Niacin- 0.5 mg
  • Calcium- 15. 6 mg
  • Iron- 0.3 mg
  • Fat-0.7 gram
  • Magnesium- 20. 8 mg
  • Phosphorous- 19.0 mg
  • Potassium- 178 mg
  • Sodium- 5.2 mg
  • Water- 157 gram

Apart from all these nutrients, Surinam cherry also contains antioxidants, lycopene, and rubixanthins.

Benefits Of Surinam Cherry (Pitanga)

  1. Helps In Managing Diabetes

    Surinam cherry helps in managing diabetes. A study from 2015, which was published in the Journal “Antioxidants” has found that an aqueous extract of dried leaves of this fruit tree helped in preserving insulin-producing pancreatic beta cells. This is primarily because the leaves are packed with anti-inflammatory compounds like flavonoids and phenols. Researchers have mentioned that it is required to be researched further to prove the therapeutic potential of the Surinam cherry leaf infusion for diabetes management.(2, 3)

  2. Helps In Reducing Fever

    The leaves of the Surinam cherry tree are used as a febrifuge to reduce fever in Brazil. The leaf extracts of E.uniflora are also known for stimulating the appetite.(4) Using surinam cherry leaves along with lemongrass to prepare the tea and using it can help in reducing fever.

  3. Rich In Antioxidants And Promotes Immunity

    The fruit is loaded with a rich content of antioxidants, especially phenols that have significant free radical scavenging power, and this in turn prevents oxidative stress and also damage to the body’s cells. A comparative study of antioxidants in ten exotic fruits from Brazil, which was published in the “International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition” found that Surinam cherry ranked higher than other fruits.(5, 6)

    The abundance of antioxidants in Surinam cherries helps in strengthening your body’s immunity and prevents your organs from significant damage caused due to radical activity.

    Moreover, the rich content of vitamin C found in Surinam cherry (pitanga) also helps in improving immunity. As per the USDA National Nutrient Database, it has been mentioned that a serving of one cup of Surinam cherry contains 45.5 mg of vitamin C. The fruit is also known for its high content of vitamin A.(7)

  4. Reduce Chances Of Cancer

    One of the best benefits of Surinam cherries is that they can reduce the chances of cancer. Studies have shown that a high intake of vitamin C aids in lowering the chance of cancer in the stomach, colon, esophagus, rectum, throat, mouth, and lungs. Since Surinam cherry is packed with vitamin C, it can be beneficial in reducing the chances of a certain type of cancer.

  5. Surinam Cherry Promotes Digestion

    The fiber content along with some essential nutrients found in Surinam cherries can promote better digestion. These cherries when consumed daily can help in treating diarrhea and also prevent various gastrointestinal issues.

  6. They Have Antiviral, Antibacterial, and Antibacterial Properties

    Surinam cherries are known to have excellent antibacterial, antifungal, and antiviral properties. People suffering from Candida fungal infections can be benefited from taking these cherries regularly.

    Some laboratory studies have also found that extracts made from Surinam cherry (pitanga) and their leaves can be effective against Staphylococcus aureus and Streptococcus listeria, bacteria.

  7. Reduces Blood Pressure

    It could be possible that Surinam cherry can help in reducing blood pressure. Though research on humans is still to be conducted to confirm this benefit, a study published in the “Journal of Ethnopharmacology) has shown that leaf extract of pitanga helped in reducing blood pressure in lab rats.(8)

  8. Regulates Growth And Reproduction

    Vitamin B2 found in Surinam cherries helps in the proper growth and development of reproductive organs and also the growth of body tissues, such as connective tissue, eyes, skin, mucous membrane, nervous system, and immune system. Moreover, it is also beneficial in enhancing your skin, hair, and nail health.

  9. Promotes Skin Health

    Surinam cherry or pitanga is loaded with vitamin C, which has great antioxidant properties and benefits in protecting from certain types of cell damage. This vitamin is also required to make collagen, which is the primary protein in the body and is required for the healing of wounds.

    Vitamin A content found in these fruits offers soft and supple skin and prevents dryness and skin ailments like psoriasis. This vitamin also helps in preventing acne and gives clear skin.

  10. Good For Eye Health

    Surinam cherries are also loaded with vitamin A and this vitamin is great for your eyesight and also the immune system. A deficiency of vitamin A can cause xerophthalmia, which is a problem related to the eye when you cannot see in low light.

  11. Helps In Weight Management

    The fruit is also known to help in weight management. Surinam cherry contains low amounts of calories and thus eating these cherries aid you in regulating your weight and also prevents you from excessive weight gain.


The seeds of Surinam cherry (Pitanga) have a resinous flavor and must be avoided. Individuals with allergy sensitivities could have difficulty with resin fragrance in the fruit and leaves.

It was found that when a few children gave the whole fruit to some dogs, they started suffering from diarrhea.(9)


Team PainAssist
Team PainAssist
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Team PainAssist, Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:July 14, 2023

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