Australian bush food may halt ageing process

28 March, 2013

The native Davidson’s plum has been a staple of the indigenous diet in the rainforests of Queensland and northern NSW for thousands of years.

Now Southern Cross University is investigating the health benefits of this Australian bush food.

The University’s Special Research Centre Southern Cross Plant Science is seeking participants for a new study looking at the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects of the Davidson’s plum (Davidsonia jerseyana), often referred to locally as the Mullumbimby plum.

The study is being conducted by Professor Stephen Myers and Dr Don Baker from the NatMed-Research Unit of Southern Cross Plant Science. Blackmores is financing the study and providing the study medication.

"Davidson’s plum has a long history of use as a food, both by Indigenous people and early settlers in Australia, and is now grown commercially for human consumption in jam, wine, ice-cream and sauces," Professor Myers said.

"Laboratory studies have confirmed the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties of the plum, suggesting that it may be beneficial in stopping oxidative damage which is a major cause of cell ageing.

"We are now testing it in humans to explore this potential."

During the study, participants will take a 100mL daily dose of an active medication for a fortnight, which is approximately equivalent to eating four Davidson’s plums per day.