The benefits of nopal are real, it is a food that due to its nutritional composition is considered a good food product.
The nopal belongs to the group of fruits and vegetables, this means that it has nutrients such as fiber, vitamins , minerals and an important contribution of water, basic to hydration and improve the digestive process.
One of the most important nutrients in the nopal is pectin and it has been suggested as a functional food. A functional food is one that due to its nutrients can generate positive effects on health.
The cactus (Opuntia spp.) , Has a great variety of species and its distribution in semiarid and arid zones of Mexico makes it widely recognized.
Benefits of nopal, are proven
The researcher from the Department of Pharmacobiology at the Center for Research and Advanced Studies (Cinvestav) , South Headquarters , found that the consumption of dehydrated cactus generates health benefits by promoting greater tolerance to glucose . Other effects proven by the habitual consumption of cactus, are:
1. Has antioxidant capacity
2. Reduce cholesterol levels
Researchers verified the hypoglycaemic effect of nopal, that is to say its effect to reduce the levels of glucose in blood, through the curve of tolerance to the glucose.
In this technique, a high amount of glucose is administered orally and then measurements are taken.
This was carried out with rats and cactus extract was used .
An optimization in the sensitivity of the insulin receptor was found and it introduced glucose to the cells more easily; thus, blood glucose concentrations decreased.
Exercise? In another phase of the investigation, it was observed that the beneficial effect of nopal in the reduction of blood glucose and oxidative stress was greater if its habitual consumption was combined with exercise .
Although the multiple benefits of nopal have already been documented, experts point out the importance of studying in greater depth the chemical processes of this plant.