Aloha! Noni could be for you


This herb from the South Pacific can help a variety of modern ailments.

If you lived on one of the islands of the south Pacific 2,000 years ago, a trip to the doctor, or, in this case, the sacred medicine man, wouldn't have brought you a prescription, but more likely a dose of noni (Morinda citrifolia). Noni is a fruit much like a pineapple in shape. In native cultures of Australia and Burma, it played a vital part in their diet and health care.

The Western world first began to discover the numerous benefits of noni back in 1950. Ralph Heinicke, Ph.D., a biochemist, started researching the chemical components of noni fruit and continues those studies almost 50 years later. What he found was fascinating.

First, he discovered an alkaloid which he named xeronine. Xeronine is found in the healthy cells of microorganisms, plants, animals, and humans. It is vital to the proper functioning of all body cells and allows the proteins in our bodies to perform their individual duties. People can get xeronine through their diets, but many researchers, including Heinicke, worry that it is not enough.

Due to the continuing depletion of the soil and chemical fertilization, many nutrients are being lost due to unhealthy crops. In addition, a poor diet, a very active lifestyle, and aging can increase the demands on your body and deplete the supply of xeronine even further. A deficiency of xeronine can cause sickness, fatigue, and worse.

Noni contains xeronine, but, more importantly, it contains its precursor, proxeronine, which is even better. Instead of just supplying the body with the alkaloid, this allows the body to control how much is produced, and the rest is simply discarded. What does this mean for the body overall? First it means that the individual proteins of the body will be better able to do whatever they're designed to do. Heinicke has found this most helpful with high blood pressure, menstrual cramps, arthritis, gastric ulcers, sprains and injuries, mental depression, atherosclerosis, senility and pain relief. Xeronine acts as the body's supreme painkiller because it works with endorphins in the body to numb pain and produce feelings of euphoria, he writes in a recent study. This conclusion is backed up by the study conducted at the University of Metz in France and published in Planta Medica in 1990. Researchers C. Younos, et al., studied the effect of noni on mice during several experiments and found that not only did it seem to have significant painkilling abilities, but it also worked as a sedative.

In addition, studies have found another chemical component in noni's roots called damnacanthal, which has been shown to be more effective than over 500 other botanical isolates in changing cancer cells back into normal cells. In 1992, a paper presented at the American Association for Cancer Research stated that mice which experimentally developed Lewis Lung carcinoma (cancer) died in under two weeks, but treated with noni, they lived up to 123 percent longer, suggesting that something in noni might be able to block tumor growth. Heinicke is a strong believer that the xeronine in noni juice can also be an essential component to overcoming cigarette, drug, and alcohol addictions.

Noni and its various chemical components may not be exactly what your doctor recommended, but it could help with some of your health problems, and it always comes highly recommended from the neighborhood medicine man!

Heinicke, Ralph, Ph.D. August 1998.

Hiramatsu, T., et al. "Induction of normal phenotypes in RAS-transformed cells by damnachanthal from Morinda ctrifolia," Cancer Letters #73 1993.

Hirazumi, A., et al. "Anticancer activity of Morinda citrifolia on intraperitoneally implanted Lewis Lung Carcinoma in syngeneic mice," Proceedings of the Western Pharmacological Society #37, 1994. .html

Younos, C., et al. "Analgesic and Behavioral effects of Morinda citrifolia," Planta Medica 56(5):430-434, 1990.


By Tamra B. Orr

Share this with your friends