Origin and Description
Borojoa patinoi, commonly known as Borojó, is a mid sized tropical forest tree that belongs to the Rubiaceae family. It grows in the northwest area of Colombia, in Ecuador and Panama, in areas of high humidity (over 85%) and an average temperature of 28°C, both in the wild and on local farms. The borojo fruit is collected when the fruit matures and falls to the ground, no trees are ever cut down or destroyed, and the fruit is never plucked from the tree, as it is not edible until fully ripened.
Borojó is an Emberá word meaning: boro = head, ne-jo = fruit. Head-shaped fruit, or round, globulous fruit.
The fruit is large (about 12 cm length) with a round shape and brown color and average weight 740-1000 grs. The pulp represents 88% of the total weight. Each fruit has 90 to 640 seeds. Borojo has high levels of protein, phosphorus, ascorbic acid, calcium and iron.
A study commissioned at Rutgers University by Nutropical, a private company, found that borojo fruit powder had a high and significant content of polyphenols as measured by the Folin-Ciocalteu polyphenol test. Most notably, the researchers believe that the key polyphenol found in borojo may be novel. Work continues to identify the compound and/or elucidate the chemical structure of this novel compound. An analysis conducted by the same company found that borojo has an ORAC value of over 54 μmolTE/g (5400 µmolTE/100g)*
Uses of Borojo
In Colombia, the borojo fruit is used as an ingredient in a drink called “jugo de amor” or “love juice” and considered as an aphrodisiac. Outside soccer stadiums, you will commonly find stand selling this concoction to the men going home after the match. Borojo is also used in the preparation of jam, wine, desserts and traditional medicines with supposed aphrodisiac effects. It is also used by the local communities against hypertension, bronchial diseases and malnutrition.
Borojo is taken by women as well as men as an appetite suppressant and a natural source of energy. The fruit itself is high in fiber, and the concentrated capsules maintain all the goodness of the fruit, and fiber curbs appetite naturally by making you feel fuller for longer. The energy comes from the high concentration of vitamins and minerals that naturally stimulates the metabolism to kick into a higher gear, which in turn can translate into more energy to exercise and shed unwanted pounds.*
Health Benefits of Borojo
Studies have shown that borojo contains only one polyphenol in relatively high concentration. Polyphenols play a critical role in human health and disease prevention. Most importantly, these powerful antioxidants help protect the body's tissues against cellular damage caused by free radicals as well as exhibiting a variety of anti-inflammatory and immunity enhancing properties instrumental in controlling the aging process.
The borojo fruit also contains high levels of vitamins, minerals, amino acids and antioxidants, and has been used for centuries as a natural energizer, an appetite suppressant and as a libido booster.
Research indicates that the high levels of natural vitamins, minerals, amino acids and antioxidants found in the borojo fruit may help boost the body’s metabolism, thus increasing energy, hunger control, and promoting sexual vitality. Minerals found in large amounts in borojo include: potassium, phosphorous, calcium, iron and magnesium. These macro minerals are necessary for maintaining the body’s central functions, warding off illness, and for cellular regeneration and growth. Borojo is one of the best fruit sources of phosphorus, which not only provides energy, but is helpful for brain functions such as memory and concentration.
Borojo also contains high levels of amino acids such as lysine, tyrosine, leucine, and valine. These essential amino acids, which are the building blocks of protein and critical for healthy functioning, are not produced by the body and therefore must be supplied in the diet.
In addition, borojo is rich in several vitamins, for example, vitamin c, calcium and, iron, all of which support a strong immune system and B vitamins, which are important for healthy skin and muscles. Other health promoting benefits of borojo include its content of amino acids and phosphorous, important for brain function and cognition and its powerful antioxidant polyphenols.*
Borojo has an Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity (ORAC) value of over 5,400 (μmolTE/100 g), which exceeds the ORAC of most fruits and vegetables. (ORAC is a measure of the antioxidant capacity of food, with higher values indicating superior antioxidant capabilities.) The laboratory analysis also measured the Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity (ORAC) of borojo. ORAC is a measure of the antioxidant capacity of food, with higher values indicating superior antioxidant capabilities. Antioxidants are critical for health because they neutralize free radicals, thus helping to prevent cell and tissue damage that could lead to cellular degeneration and disease. This finding wasn’t surprising given the high levels of antioxidant polyphenols that were discovered in the Rutgers University study. Overall, borojo seems to function through the combined benefits of polyphenol antioxidants, essential amino acids and macro minerals
The USDA recommends a daily intake of ORAC units at 3000-5000. It is estimated that over 80% of the world's population does not consume even half of the recommended ORAC intake on a daily basis. In order to fight off the potentially harmful effects of free radicals and enjoy good health, it is important to become educated on which foods contain the best nutritional values and ORAC scores. Blueberries, for example, have an ORAC value of 2400(μmolTE/100g), blackberries, 2036(μmolTE/100 g) and raspberries, 1220(μmolTE/100g)*
Forms and Presentation
In some Latin American countries, the borojo fruit is available fresh in markets and fruit stands. In North America and the rest of the world, the pulp is sometimes available frozen in Hispanic grocery stores. Concentrated borojo capsules are also available as supplements. Additionally, there are encapsulated formulations of borojo and additional natural ingredients - for example, one formula offers borojo combined with guarana and maca. This particular blend increases the energy promoting qualities of the borojo fruit.
- Source nutropical.com