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The Wonders
of Noni

by Neil Solomon, M.D., Ph.D.

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It's ugly, it stinks, and it doesn't taste all that great, yet it's the first thing millions of people reach for in the morning. It's noni, and it has taken the food-supplement world by storm in less than 10 years. Until the mid 1990s, most North Americans had never heard of noni. Now it has become a household word. The first national company to produce and market noni juice recently passed the 1 billion dollar mark in sales.
While noni's physical characteristics are not overly attractive, don't be deceived. For what noni lacks in physical beauty it certainly makes up for in nutritional and medicinal value. Currently, noni is ranked sixth out of the 10 top-selling medicinal herbs in the United States, and the tropical fruit is expected to break the five top herbs soon.
It all started about 2,000 years ago (as far as historians can tell) when a green, bumpy fruit arrived in Tahiti, Hawaii, and other Pacific islands. How the fruit got there is still a bit of a mystery. It is believed it came from the "east" from India and surrounding regions. However it got there, noni found Polynesia to be a perfect home. There is ample evidence to show ancient Polynesians (as well as their descendants) used noni extensively for food, cloth dye, and most importantly, for its medicinal properties.
 Noni, or Morinda citrifolia, comes from the family Rubiaceae.  This scientific family has about 80 different species of plants, but only 20 of these species have been identitified as having any significant economic worth or of being noteworthy in other ways. In fact, the one plant that stands out as the "queen" of the Morinda genus  is noni.
The noni plant, which can grow as high as 20 feet, has large evergreen leaves, and its small white flowers sprout at various times during the year. These flowers develop into a bumpy, pitted fruit that is several inches long. In thousands of individual experiences, I have seen how drinking noni juice, even in small doses such as one ounce, has helped relieve already existing symptoms as well as helped prevent the onset of others. Since you may be wondering how (exactly) noni could fit into a holistic health plan, let me briefly touch on some of the things noni has been seen to help improve.
Increased Energy Levels
For centuries, noni was used as a food staple in Polynesian and other cultures, and in times of famine because of its high nutrient content. Modern-day use has shown that a large majority of those taking noni for a specific health condition (other than fatigue or lack of energy) also experience a notable increase in their energy levels.
Relief From Chronic and Severe Pain
Noni's ability to relieve pain, whether from chronic backaches or from arthritis in the joints, has long been recognized. There is scientific proof that noni can profoundly impact both the severity and chronic nature of various types of pain.
Strengthening the Immune System
Present-day research has discovered that noni possesses the ability to possibly modulate the body's immune functions. For instance, a study conducted by researchers at the University of Hawaii discovered that noni effectively aids the body in fighting cancerous growths by activating the body's production of nitric oxide, cytokines, and other agents that actively seek out and destroy cancerous cells. Other research indicates that noni possesses potent antimicrobial properties (for instance, it has been shown to fight the dreaded E. coli bacteria). This immune-system response is not only evident in humans, but in animals as well.
With chronic illness on the rise, we are currently in the midst of a health revolution that is focusing on disease prevention and personal responsibility. A survey of 1,227 doctors and other health professionals receiving data from more than 25,000 noni drinkers found that noni was reported to help decrease the symptoms of a large number of health conditions. This survey has convinced me that noni undoubtedly possesses a variety of medicinal-like properties that modern medicine cannot ignore.

Excerpted with permission from The Noni Solution ©2004 by Neil Solomon, M.D., Ph.D., published by Direct Source Publishing, Orem, UT. Available in stores or visit www.nonitools.com

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