Acerola cherry is juicy and has a sweet/sour taste. It is one of the richest sources of vitamin C in fruit, second only to camu-camu.
Other names for the acerola are the West Indian cherry, Barbados cherry, and wild crapemyrtle. Acerola is native from Southern Mexico, Central and South America.
It is well known for being extremely rich in vitamin C although it also contains vitamins A, B1, B2 and B3 as well as carotenoids and bioflavonoids which provide very important nutritive value and a possible use as an antioxidant. The Vitamin C produced by the fruit is better absorbed by human organisms than synthetic ascorbic acid.
There are approximately 1600 mg of Vitamin C in 100 grams of this fruit.
The acerola cherry also contains approximately double the magnesium, potassium and vitamin B5, as an orange. They are known to have high levels of vitamin A, often equal to that of raw carrots. In addition to vitamins A, B and C, acerola cherries also contain the key minerals calcium, iron, and phosphorus.
As well as these powerful essential vitamins and minerals, acerola cherries also contain other health promoting plant compounds such as flavonoids and anthocyanins that are part of a bigger category of health compounds called polyphenols. Acerola even boasts a novel flavonoid so far only discovered in only these cherries, though that does not rule out the possibility that this compound could also be present but undiscovered in other fruits.
So what does all this mean? Acerola cherries ROCK!