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Noni Juice

What Should I Know About It?

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Updated April 08, 2014

noni fruit

Noni fruit hanging from a tree

Jaime Kowal/Stockbyte/Getty Images

What is Noni Juice?

Noni, also known as Morinda citrifolia, is a small, flowering shrub native to the Pacific islands, Polynesia, Asia, and Australia. It grows to a height of up to 10 feet high, and the leaves are dark green and oval shaped. The flower heads grow to become mature yellow fruit that have a strong odor.

Noni juice is widely available as the juice or liquid concentrate. It can also be found in tablet and capsule form. Other popular antioxidants include goji berryacai berry, mangosteencamu camu and tart cherries.

Why Do People Use Noni Juice?

In traditional Polynesian medicine, noni (Morinda citrifolia) fruit has been used for many health conditions, such as constipation, diarrhea, skin inflammation, infection, and mouth sores. It has an unpleasant odor and taste, so it is believed to be a last resort fruit by many cultures. Manufacturers today sweeten noni juice to improve the taste.

Traditionally, the leaves of the noni tree were used topically for healing wounds.

Noni juice, like the juice of many other fruits, is a source of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. The antioxidants may help to prevent certain diseases and help slow age-related changes in the body.

Animal studies evaluating the effects of noni suggest that it may have anti-cancer, pain-relieving, and immune system-enhancing effects. However, these studies mostly used extremely high doses that would be difficult to obtain from taking the juice. More importantly, there's insufficient reliable evidence about the safety or effectiveness of noni for any health condition in humans.

Noni is heavily promoted for a very wide variety of conditions, such as arthritis, atherosclerosis, bladder infections, boils, bowel conditions, burns, cancer, chronic fatigue syndrome, circulatory weakness, colds, cold sores, constipation, diabetes, drug addiction, eye inflammation, fever, fractures, gastric ulcers, gingivitis, headaches, heart disease, hypertension, improved digestion, immune weakness, indigestion, kidney disease, malaria, menstrual cramps, menstrual disorders, mouth sores, respiratory disorders, ringworm, sinusitis, skin inflammation, sprains, strokes, thrush, and wounds. There is no real evidence, however, that noni is effective for these conditions.

Safety

There are no formally established side effects of noni juice. Due to the lack of evidence, noni should not be used by pregnant or nursing women, children, or people with liver or kidney disease.

Noni juice is high in potassium, so it should be avoided by people with kidney disease or those taking ,potassium-sparing diuretics, angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors or angiotensin II receptor blockers, because it may result in hyperkalemia, the dangerous elevation of potassium levels

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