We all know that, this is the time of the year when the market is flooded with African cherry, also known as agbalumo in Yoruba and udara in Igbo. The Sapotaceae family includes Chrysophyllum albidum, also known as African cherry or white star apple. The African cherry whose botanical name is Prunus africana, has a wide distribution in Africa, occurring in montane regions of central and southern Africa and on the islands of Bioko, São-Tomé, Grande Comore, and Madagascar. It can be found at 900–3,400 m (3,000–10,000 ft) above sea level. It is a canopy tree 30–40 m in height, and is the tallest member of Prunus. See more details below.Uses
Traditional and alternative medicine
The species has a long history of traditional uses. The bark is used in numerous ways – as a wound dressing, a purgative, or an appetite stimulant, and to treat fevers, malaria, arrow poisoning, stomach pain, kidney disease, gonorrhoea, and insanity.
The extract Pygeum is an herbal remedy prepared from the bark of P. africana and is promoted as an alternative medicine for benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). A 2016 literature review found that Pygeum offered no benefit. A 2019 review said it showed some evidence of BPH symptom relief.
The timber is a hardwood employed in the manufacture of axe and hoe handles, utensils, wagons, floors, chopping blocks, carving boards, bridge decks, and furniture. The wood is tough, heavy, straight-grained, and pink, with a pungent bitter-almond smell when first cut, turning mahogany and odorless later
The fruit, which can be found all over tropical Africa, has a variety of health benefits. A few of them are listed below.
Vitamins and Minerals
According to studies, the fleshy pulp of the African cherry, which is commonly eaten as a snack, contains more ascorbic acid than oranges and guava. The fruit itself is said to be a good source of vitamins, iron, and flavor. As a result, fruit contributes to a healthy diet.
It Helps to Relieve Cramps.
African cherry is also a good source of calcium, which gives the human body strength. Premenstrual syndrome symptoms such as cramping and abdominal bloating can be alleviated by the calcium in the fruit.
Thus according to Nurse Rita, a serving of star apple provides 3 grams of fiber, which is part of the recommended daily fiber intake of 25 to 38 grams. These fibers add bulk to your diet, which can help you feel fuller for longer periods of time. This can help you lose weight by preventing you from overeating. This nutrient may also help you avoid diabetes and certain types of cancer.
It is Used to Treat Diseases.
Researchers at Covenant University in Ogun State, Nigeria’s Department of Biological Sciences, College of Science and Technology, discovered that the African cherry can be used to treat a variety of diseases. “The bark is used to treat yellow fever and malaria, and the leaf is used as an emollient and to treat skin eruptions, stomachaches, and diarrhea.” The cotyledons of Chrysophyllum albidum seeds are also used as ointments in Western Nigeria to treat vaginal and dermatological infections, according to the study.