Guava may have been domesticated in Peru several thousand years ago; Peruvian archaeological sites have revealed guava seeds found stored with beans, corn, squash, and other cultivated plants. Guava fruit is still enjoyed as a sweet treat by indigenous peoples throughout the rainforest, and the leaves and bark of the guava tree have a long history of medicinal uses that are still employed today.
The Tikuna Indians decoct the leaves or bark of guava as a cure for diarrhea. In fact, an infusion or decoction made from the leaves and/or bark has been used by many tribes for diarrhea and dysentery throughout the Amazon, and Indians also employ it for sore throats, vomiting, stomach upsets, for vertigo, and to regulate menstrual periods. Tender leaves are chewed for bleeding gums and bad breath, and it is said to prevent hangovers (if chewed before drinking). Indians throughout the Amazon gargle a leaf decoction for mouth sores, bleeding gums, or use it as a douche for vaginal discharge