Anticancer Potential: Exploring Feijoa's Compounds

  • Tanvi Shukla Master of Pharmacy - MPHARM, Nirma University
  • Chimdi Okoye Bachelor of Science - BS, Pharmaceutical Science with Regulatory Affairs, Kingston University

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Feijoa, a fruit indigenous to South America, harbours compounds holding promise for their potential anticancer attributes. This tropical gem, also known as pineapple guava, boasts a rich reservoir of bioactive elements, such as polyphenols, flavonoids, and antioxidants, believed to contribute to its potential health benefits. These compounds have been of interest due to their potential to hinder cancerous cell growth and promote cell apoptosis.

Understanding the complexities of cancer requires a nuanced approach. Its multifaceted origins, encompassing genetic predisposition, environmental factors, lifestyle choices, and exposure to carcinogens, make the pursuit of potential preventatives and treatments imperative for public health. Recognising the significance of natural sources, like feijoa, in this pursuit, researchers are delving deeper into its compounds to uncover their mechanisms and potential applications in the fight against cancer.

This article aims to elucidate the bioactive elements in feijoa and their speculated anticancer properties, presenting insights into ongoing research and the potential implications for cancer prevention and treatment. Through a digestible exploration, it aspires to offer accessible information, bridging the gap between scientific findings and layman's understanding.


Cancer's origins are multifaceted, influenced by various factors. Genetic predisposition plays a significant role, with certain inherited mutations increasing susceptibility to specific types of cancer. Additionally, environmental factors such as exposure to radiation, pollutants, and certain chemicals can contribute to the development of cancer. Lifestyle choices, including smoking, excessive alcohol consumption, poor diet, and lack of physical activity, are known contributors to various cancers. Moreover, prolonged exposure to carcinogens, such as asbestos and certain industrial chemicals, also increases cancer risk.

Understanding these causes is crucial for effective prevention strategies. While genetic predisposition may not be modifiable, efforts to reduce exposure to environmental carcinogens and adopt a healthier lifestyle can significantly mitigate the risk of developing cancer. Educating individuals about these risk factors and promoting early screening for certain cancers can aid in early detection and intervention, potentially improving outcomes.

By comprehending the multifaceted nature of cancer causation, individuals can make informed choices to reduce their risk, contributing to a proactive approach towards cancer prevention and better overall health.


Cancer symptoms are diverse, varying based on the type and location, but often include subtle yet crucial indicators. Unexplained weight loss, a common early sign, may point to an underlying issue, prompting further investigation. Persistent fatigue, beyond normal tiredness, can be a symptom of various cancers and warrants attention. Pain, especially when unrelated to a specific injury or strain, may signal an underlying problem. Changes in bodily functions, such as alterations in bowel habits or unexplained bleeding, could indicate potential issues that require medical evaluation.

These symptoms serve as the body's signals, urging individuals to pay attention to their health. It's crucial to recognise that these signs may not necessarily confirm cancer, but they underscore the importance of seeking timely medical advice for proper diagnosis and intervention. Early detection significantly improves treatment outcomes, emphasising the importance of understanding and recognising potential symptoms.

For readers navigating the complexities of cancer, being aware of these signs and seeking prompt medical attention when needed is an empowering step towards proactive health management. In the following sections, we will delve into the definition of cancer, exploring its intricacies and the potential impact of feijoa's compounds on its prevention and treatment.

Feijoa's bioactive compounds

Polyphenols: Abundant in feijoa, polyphenols possess potent antioxidant properties that combat harmful free radicals. Studies suggest their potential to lower cancer risk.

Flavonoids: Feijoa's flavonoids exhibit anti-inflammatory and anticancer characteristics, aiding in the prevention of cell damage and the inhibition of tumour growth.

Antioxidants: Feijoa is a rich source of antioxidants that can neutralise free radicals, shielding DNA from damage that could lead to cancer.

Studies and research

  • In vitro studies: Laboratory experiments have illustrated feijoa's potential to induce apoptosis in cancer cells, indicating its role as a natural anticancer agent
  • Animal studies: Trials on animals have shown promising outcomes, with feijoa extract demonstrating the ability to diminish tumour growth and impede metastasis

Mechanisms of action

The bioactive compounds in feijoa may interfere with cancer cell signalling pathways, impede angiogenesis (blood vessel formation to tumours), and modulate gene expression. These actions contribute to its potential anticancer effects.

Treatment and home remedies

In addition to prevention strategies, ongoing research explores the potential of feijoa extracts or supplements as adjunct therapies to conventional cancer treatments. Preliminary studies indicate promising results in leveraging feijoa's bioactive compounds to complement existing therapeutic approaches.

While feijoa shows promise, it is crucial to approach its use in cancer treatment with caution. The exact dosage, frequency, and efficacy of feijoa extracts for treating cancer remain uncertain, highlighting the need for further rigorous scientific investigation.

Patients should consult healthcare professionals before incorporating feijoa extracts or supplements into their cancer treatment regimen. 


What are the properties of ACCA Sellowiana?

ACCA Sellowiana, commonly known as feijoa, possesses high vitamin C content, dietary fibre, antioxidants, and various bioactive compounds.

What are the properties of feijoa?

Feijoa's properties include a rich source of antioxidants, vitamins (especially vitamin C), dietary fibre, and bioactive elements like polyphenols and flavonoids.

What do feijoas look like?

Feijoas resemble oval-shaped fruits with green skin, and the flesh inside is typically creamy-white with a jelly-like texture filled with small edible seeds.

What are the pollinators of feijoas?

Feijoas are primarily pollinated by birds, particularly the common hummingbird, and insects like bees.


Feijoa, a fruit rich in bioactive compounds including polyphenols, flavonoids, and antioxidants, exhibits the potential to hinder the growth of cancer cells and facilitate programmed cell death, known as apoptosis. While studies indicate its promise as a natural anticancer agent, comprehensive research is essential to unveil its precise mechanisms and ascertain its effectiveness in cancer prevention and treatment.

Incorporating feijoa into a well-rounded diet, coupled with other healthy lifestyle choices, holds promise in reducing cancer risk. However, it's crucial to approach feijoa as part of a holistic health regimen rather than a standalone cancer treatment. Consulting healthcare professionals remains imperative before considering feijoa extracts or supplements as complementary measures in cancer treatment strategies.

The exploration of feijoa's compounds for potential therapeutic applications signifies an exciting area in oncology research. Yet, to ensure its safe and effective utilisation in cancer management, continued scientific investigation and clinical trials are necessary to validate its role and determine the most beneficial methods of incorporation into existing treatment protocols.


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Tanvi Shukla

Master of Pharmacy - MPHARM, Nirma University

I am Tanvi Shukla, a Master in Pharmaceutical Chemistry and a proud Gold Medalist. With a strong academic foundation, I have seamlessly blended my passion for science with the art of writing and innovation. As an experienced freelancer, I specialize in medical and scientific writing, using my skills to translate complex concepts into engaging content. Additionally, I bring a wealth of expertise as a content and copywriter, crafting compelling narratives for various industries. Moreover, I am well-versed in clinical research and documentation, making me a specialist in this critical aspect of healthcare.

With several years of experience, I have honed my abilities to captivate audiences and convey messages effectively. My commitment to excellence in writing and scientific expertise ensures that I provide valuable insights and contribute meaningfully to medical and scientific communication. I am dedicated to delivering high-quality content that informs, educates, and inspires readers while focusing on accuracy and professionalism.

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