Although only found in areas with dry climate, cactus has tremendous health benefits. Despite prickly cactus has leaves to store water reserves in large quantities and has a delicious flavor when it landed on the tongue. This plant can survive long without water. Cactus plants we usually encounter in hot and dry areas like deserts. Cactus has long roots that are useful to look for water and widen water absorption in the soil. Water is absorbed by the cactus can be stored in the stem. Cactus also has leaves that can be transformed into thorns in order to reduce water evaporation through the leaves. Therefore cactus can grow for a long time without water.
Prickly plant is often used as ornamental plant can be used as food. Not only that, eating cactus is also beneficial to health. Research shows that cactus is rich in vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients, and fiber to become one of the plants that is now being sought. However, not all types can be consumed. One type of cactus that can be eaten is pear cartus. The food from cactus is very popular in some countries in Latin America, such as Mexico. For thousands of years hill tribe uses cactus to overcome the itching and swelling caused by insect bites.
Here are the benefits of eating cactus you must know:
1. Lowering cholesterol
One recent study found that cactus leaves can reduce bad cholesterol levels in the body. When the researchers tested the cholesterol levels from a group of women who were asked to consume cactus leaves for a month, they found that levels of bad cholesterol in the body decreases.
2. Preventing cancer
Cactus leaves have flavonoids and phenolic. Both of these substances have antioxidant effects on the body. Because it acts as an antioxidant, the cactus leaves are believed to help protect the cells of a healthy body from damage by free radicals. Phytochemicals in cactus leaves are also shown to inhibit the growth of cancer cells, especially breast, prostate, colon, and liver cancer.
3. Prevent brain damage
Certain compounds contained in the cactus stem are believed to play a role in preventing damage to those experienced brain cells with aging.
4. Controlling blood sugar levels
Those who suffer from diabetes are also advised to consume leaves of cactus because it are believed to effective in controlling blood sugar levels efficiently. Fiber and pectin can minimize sugar absorption in the stomach and intestines. Moreover, it also protects the liver from oxidation by increasing insulin sensitivity.
5. Maintain a healthy digestive system
Cactus also can aid the digestive system. Fiber therein can activate bowel movements so as to make a bowel movement to be smooth.
6. Preventing inflammation
Cactus also has anti-inflammatory properties that can reduce inflammation in the muscles, arteries and cardiovascular system.
7. Maintain weight
Cactus leaves can also be one of the foods that have an effect on weight loss. Cactus extract is used as a supplement acts as a diuretic. Cactus does not deplete minerals and actually offer an antioxidant effect.
8. Reducing the effects of drunk
Eating cactus could actually help reduce the bad effects due to drunk. This is because cactus has carotenoids that can help inflammation in the body.
9. Against black magic
Cactus plants grow in dry places also have the power to ward off negative energy. This power can only come out when they are planted or placed outside the house. Most people believe when cactus is placed in the house would bring bad luck.
Although the shape is rather creepy, cactus plants already have their own fans in the world. Cactus with a unique shape rewarded with a relatively expensive price. Cactus leaves are beneficial to human life.