Considerations for Choosing a Noni ProductNoni products are getting more and more attention all the time. Over the past 6 years, the nutrition market has become flooded with different products. Companies now offer everything from noni juice, to noni capsules and noni tea, and even noni soap. But not all products are the same, so it is important to know what to look for before you make an investment in any of these products. Here is a list of important things to understand before making your first noni purchase.

Harvesting
· Noni fruit must be harvested in a specific way to protect the fruit’s nutrients. The handling of the fruit from the very beginning can have an affect on the fruit’s efficacy.

In a recent article published in Alternative Health magazine, Dr. Harvey Kaltsas remarked, “Noni’s nutritional value is best when picked ripe, which results in the highest level of polysaccharides, fatty acids, and proteins-compounds possibly responsible for the therapeutic biological activity of the fruit.”

Some companies have complete control over the harvesting and picking process, while some have limited control, and others may have no control, relying on an ingredient broker’s expertise.

If one noni product isn’t working for you, you may consider switching to a product from a company that has more control over the production process. If you are unsure of the origin of the fruit, or of the control the company exercises over the harvesting process, don’t hesitate to ask them before purchasing the product.

Processing
· There are many different ways noni products are processed and brought into the commercial market. The most popular methods will be explored below. If you are not getting results from a particular product, you may examine the method used to produce the product and you may even consider trying another product processed using a different method. Each product has its pros and cons; examples are outlined below.

  1. Juice Only Method
    Noni fruit is picked when the product is ripe or very ripe, bordering on rotten. When the fruit is this ripe, the juice literally drips off of the fruit. The fruit is then placed over large screens and the juice drips off from the fruit and is collected in large tubs. This juice is then cleaned and bottled with out adding any other flavoring agents, sweeteners, or thickeners. These products normally bear a label stating “100% pure noni juice”. Sometimes companies will add water to the juice before bottling it for increased volume. The FDA currently has no regulations on noni juice, so companies can legally add water back to the juice that was collected and it can still bear the label “100% pure noni juice”. This product should also pass through a pasteurization process for safety.

    a. Pro: This is the purest form of noni juice.

    b. Cons: 100% pure juice can be difficult to palate because of noni’s inherit strong taste. The natural juice can be diluted undetectably and it will still bear the 100% pure juice label. Juice made from this method is at risk of being rotten due to over ripening. This process excludes any beneficial properties that could be contained in the noni fruit.

  2. The Puree Method
    The entire noni fruit is used in creating the juice. As in the 100% pure products, the fruit should be picked when fully ripe. The fruit is mashed finely (excluding the seeds) into a liquid puree. Because this puree is thick, flavoring juices are usually added to make the fruit into a liquid, palatable, consistency before bottling. This product should pass through a pasteurization process for safety.

    a. Pros: Although still under scientific investigation, there are some beneficial properties derived from the noni fruit that you receive in the products using this method. The juice is more palatable with the addition of flavoring juices. Natural flavoring juices can enhance the nutritional benefits of the juice.

    b. Cons: Too many flavoring agents added can weaken the overall potency of the juice. Look for a product that is at least 70% noni juice.

  3. Tablets and Capsules
    The noni fruit is picked when it has reached maturity. The fruit is then passed through a dehydration or drying process that removes the majority of moisture content from the fruit. The dried fruit typically undergoes a process called “irradiation” to clean and sanitize the dried fruit. It is then ground into fine particles that are encapsulated or bound into tablets.

    a. Pros: Tablets and capsules are convenient and easy to consume. The natural taste of the noni fruit is masked, making it palatable.

    b. Cons: Because of a lack of scientific research on dried or dehydrated noni, its efficacy in this state is largely unknown. Any time a fruit is dehydrated, certain nutrients and compounds are lost. It has yet to be determined which properties in the noni fruit are lost during this process, but it is impossible to prevent some nutrients from being lost.

  4. The Powdered Juice Method
    The noni fruit is generally picked when it has reached maturity. The fruit is then passed through a dehydration or drying process that removes the majority of the moisture content from the fruit. After being irradiated, the fruit is then ground into fine particles that are added into a liquid solution consisting of flavoring agents, sweeteners, and thickeners. You can identify this juice by pouring it into a clear container and letting it sit overnight. If black, grainy particles settle to the bottom of the cup, the juice has been made with this process. Also, the particles are readily identifiable floating in the juice.

    a. Pros: The juice will normally have a good flavor. The drying process masks the naturally occurring odor and taste of the noni fruit.

    b. Cons: The drying or dehydrating process removes some nutritional value from the fruit. In addition, it is difficult to determine how much noni you are getting in each serving. Some of these products bear a high sugar content as artificial sweeteners have been added.

Pasteurization
In the United States, the FDA strongly recommends that all fruit juices be pasteurized. Currently 98% of all juices in the U.S. are pasteurized to kill harmful bacteria that may have grown during the harvesting and bottling process.

Check with the manufacturer to make sure that the noni juice product you purchase has been pasteurized. If it has not been, law requires it to bear a label warning consumers of the hazards of drinking unpasteurized juices. For in-depth information on the pasteurization of juices, visit http://www.cfsan.fda.gov/~dms/juicsafe.html.

Nutritional Facts
All consumable products in the United States must provide a nutritional facts panel on the label. There are a few companies that have not made the effort to provide a compliant label. Beware of these companies as they are in direct violation of the law.

It is important to understand exactly what you are purchasing. If you don’t know or can’t find the answer, don’t be afraid to ask. There are large differences in the types of noni products on the market.

Conclusion
Noni is a phenomenal fruit. However, many factors can influence a final product’s efficacy. The more you know about the noni product, how it is harvested, where it was grown, and how it was processed, the more likely you are to achieve your desired results. If you are not receiving noticeable results after 60 days, consider switching to a product that is manufactured using a different process.