My passion fruit vines are full of unripen green fruit. In a week, I expect more ripen fruit to harvest. Passion fruit is being studied by many medical laboratories to learn how it can cure serious ailments like cancer.

Passion Fruit has Phytochemicals that is a powerful anti-toxicant. These phytochemicals are called : Passaflorine, Harmine, Harman, Harmol, Harmalin, Carotenoids, Vitexin, Isovitexin and Chrysin, Scopoletin, Carotenoids, Theobromine

The juice, but mainly the leaves of passion fruit contain the alkaloids, including Harman, which has blood pressure lowering, sedative and antispasmodic action. The passion fruit leaves are used in many countries as medicines for a variety of illnesses, but the latest find is that passion fruit juice can kill cancer cells in vitro.

The flower of passion fruit has a mild sedative and can help to induce sleep which is good for insomniacs.

Passion flower has also been used in the treatment of nervous disorders, epilepsy and hyperactive children, bronchial asthma, insomnia, nervous gastrointestinal disorders and menopausal problems.

Passion flower however was sometimes used as a mild hallucinogen by native Caribbean natives, similar to marijuana. The Caribbean natives would drink a tea made from the leaves of the passion fruit, and go into a trance to speak to their ancestral spirits. This practice was stopped after the Spanish conquered them, and converted them to Catholicism.

There is a study done in the USA, that studied the effect of fruit juices on those who have cancer. The results proved that yellow passion fruit extracts can kill cancer cells in vitro. The phytochemicals which are responsible for this anti-cancer effect are carotenoids and polyphenols.

The variety of passion fruit we have in the Philippines is the yellow one. The Spanish brought in the passion fruit vines of yellow passion fruit to the Philippines. The purple passion fruit grows in Central and South America, and the peel extract can reduce asthma symptoms. Another study focused on 42 asthmatic patients and gave them an oral administration of purple passion fruit extract. The passion fruit extract supplementation reduced the wheezing by 75 percent and increased forced vital capacity.

Passion fruit peel extract also cures knee osteoarthritis. Medical doctors did a study on patients suffering from arthritis. The results was that it was discovered that the flavanoid rich extract significantly reduced pain and stiffness.

Spanish priests who arrived with the explorers that eventually conquered Central and South America discovered native medicine men using this passion fruit as medicine. The passion fruit juice made people relaxed and sleepy. The leaves were made into a tea, and used as a sleep-inducing medicine. The name ‘Passion’ was given by Catholic missionaries in South America. The corona threads of the passion flower were seen as a symbol of the crown of thorns, the five stamens for wounds, the five petals and five sepals as the ten apostles (excluding the two that betrayed Jesus, namely Judas and later Peter who denied knowing Jesus after the arrest of Jesus at the garden of Gesethame) and the three stigmas for the nails on the cross.

How to make passion fruit juice:

Take the yellow ripen passion fruit.
*Cut in half
*Scoop out seeds and pulp around seeds.

Add 1 tablespoon sugar for every 1 passion fruit (two sides = 1 fruit) and then mix with the seeds/pulp extracted. Add 1 cup per fruit, and mix well. This juice can be mixed with pineapple juice or guava juice too.

Use pineapple juice instead of water…add sugar to seeds like making simple passion fruit juice, but the pineapple juice is already sweet. Just mix to taste! ENJOY with cool ice cubs and a bit of mint leaf!

Drain off seeds (for replanting…just place in fertile soil, and wait till vine sprouts).

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About philippineobservers

Betty and Eve are classmates from long ago in Maryknoll High School. Betty is a journalism graduate from University of the Philippines, and became editor of several magazines, such as Miscellaneous Weekly, Moms & Kids, and was the publisher and editor of Philippine Pet Press. Eve graduated from Maryknoll College in 1974 and went on to a Masters in Business Administration from the Ateneo in 1991. Eve ran her own travel agency business, and is an organic farmer. Together, Eve and Betty share their observations on the changes that happen in their communities as well as the entire Philippines.


    • You can buy fresh passion fruit in markets during the season — this is around Nov. to March, when it is the cool season.

    • I know that some herbalists make a tea from the leaves of passion fruit, but the effect is less than when eating or drinking the juice of the fruit. :)

  1. I have red and yellow passionfruits.the red is sweet and has good aroma compared to yellow but the yellow is high yielder.

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