Camu camu berries come from the Amazon rainforest and are being promoted for their antioxidant power and purported anti-viral properties. They are said to help treat herpes, shingles, and the common cold.
The berries do provide antioxidants, but studies have been limited so we don’t know very much about any health benefits. 100 grams of camu camu provides up to six grams of vitamin C, 100 times more than you would get in 100 grams of lemon.
Marketers of camu camu claim that it can be used for eye conditions, including cataracts and glaucoma, as well to treat asthma, atherosclerosis, chronic fatigue syndrome, depression, gum disease, headaches, and osteoarthritis. It’s also supposed to increase energy and stimulate the immune system. That’s quite a list, but a review of research from the Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database shows that while camu camu contains vitamin C, beta-carotene, fatty acids and protein, there’s not enough information about the fruit to determine whether or not it is effective for the prevention or treatment of any illness.