Maybe all this time, we only know that cacti function as ornamental plants that can beautify the room. But, it turns out that behind its thorny shape, cacti store many benefits that are useful for the health of the body.
In Indonesia, cactus is still rarely consumed. However, in Mexico, this plant is commonly consumed and is a food that can improve body health.
In taste, cactus has a crunchy texture and a fresh and salty taste. However, you have to be good at processing it so that the cactus can be consumed by the body.
What are the health benefits of cactus? Read more below.
1. Contains fiber which is good for digestion
The first benefit of cactus is that it contains quite a lot of fiber. As we know, our bodies need fiber to launch the digestive process in the body. Because, if we lack fiber, this makes the stools become denser and our digestion will be disturbed.
2. Able to lower cholesterol in the blood
Based on research conducted by the University of Vienna, launching from Readerdigest.co.ukThe fiber in cactus is not only able to facilitate digestion. But, it is also able to lower cholesterol levels in the body.
This study was conducted on 68 women who regularly consume cactus. The result? For four weeks after consuming cactus in a row, their cholesterol levels dropped significantly.
3. Lowering blood sugar for diabetics
Cactus was found to be able to lower blood sugar levels for diabetics. Because, in the cactus contains fiber and pectin which is able to control the absorption of sugar in the body.
In addition, cactus is also able to increase the body’s sensitivity to insulin. Thus, blood sugar that enters the body will be quickly converted into energy and controlled. But, keep in mind, yesBela, cactus here is only as a companion and not as the main drug in lowering blood sugar levels.
4. Contains vitamin B complex needed by the body
Just like vegetables and fruit, cactus also contains vitamin B complex needed by the body. This B complex vitamin functions to speed up metabolism, thereby reducing the buildup of carbohydrates and fats in the body.
5. Cactus contains bio-flavonoids which are effective in overcoming inflammation
Our bodies need bio-flavonoid compounds that help ward off free radicals and have anti-inflammatory effects. This effect serves to help heal inflammation that occurs in the body.
If you eat cactus regularly, the pain due to inflammation that you experience will be neutralized. Thus, it is easier to recover and be healthy without a long time.
6. Fight cancer cells
Although it is covered with thorns that make wounds if rubbed against the skin, cactus stems have anti-oxidant compounds that the body needs. Such as pectin, carotene, ascorbic acid, betalain, polyphenols, and gallic acid.
The compounds mentioned earlier are able to ward off free radicals that can trigger the growth of cancer cells. In fact, if you consume it regularly, the anti-oxidant content in cactus can fight cancer cells without damaging healthy body cells.
7. Prevent premature aging
As previously mentioned, cactus contains bio-flavonoids that are able to overcome inflammation in the body. Another function of bio-flavonoids is to stimulate the growth of new cells more quickly. Thus, damaged cells will be replaced with new cells and prevent premature aging. Especially, on the skin.
8. Help improve sleep quality
Unlike other plants that actively breathe oxygen at night, cacti actually release more oxygen at night. If you put it indoors, the cactus will help filter carbon dioxide and make your room fresher.
In effect, you will not be deprived of oxygen intake and this will improve the quality of your sleep. So, the body will rest more optimally and when you wake up you will feel more refreshed.
9. Reduces hangover effects
Cacti contain a variety of nutrients and antioxidants, including vitamins C, E, A, iron, calcium and carotenoids. This content was able to reduce the effects of drunkenness due to consuming alcoholic beverages.
Based on a study conducted by the Tulane Health Science Center in New Orleans, launched from Medicaldaily.comif you take cactus extract five to seven hours before drinking alcoholic beverages, this will reduce the effects of excessive hangovers.
10. Protects brain cells
The content of quercetin, (+)-dihydroquercetin, and quercetin 3-methyl in cactus not only functions as an anti-inflammatory which makes the body recover quickly when injured. More than that, the content was able to protect brain cells, so they are not easily damaged.
That was the benefits of cactus for health. How about it, Bella? Want to try it?
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