(NaturalNews) The prickly pear cactus – known as nopal in Mexico – exhibits multiple medicinal effects. As professor of nutrition Winston F. Craig, Ph.D., writes to the HighBeam Encyclopedia, the prickly pear can help with diabetes, lower blood sugar levels and offer other health benefits.
• The ability for the prickly pear cactus (nopal) to lower blood sugar has been well documented by many studies. In traditional Mexican medicine, nopal is used for treating type-2 Diabetes.
• Mexican researchers found that people with non-insulin-dependent diabetes given broiled nopal stems experienced a large drop in blood sugar levels.
• It has been shown that daily consumption of 250mg of this plant will lower total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol levels, according to a recent study. HDL cholesterol and triglyceride levels were not affected.
• In India, the cactus has been used to treat whooping cough and asthma.
• Prickly pear fruit and other elements of the cactus are edible as a jelly or jam, as a fruit or as a cooked dish.
• The cactus is naturally found in Arizona, Mexico and other parts of the American Southwest; it is commercially grown in California and also has been exported to Europe and India.
• In the Sonoran Desert, growing a new prickly pear is easy: the cactus grows in a linked "pad" setup, and each pad can be cut off, replanted and in most cases will take root, making a new cactus.
• For many diabetics or prediabetics, nopal is a complete replacement for prescription blood sugar drugs. It regulates blood sugar with no negative side effects and no liver damage (which is one of the primary side effects of blood sugar prescriptions). Safety note: Do not halt prescription drug use except under the direct supervision of a naturopathic physician.
• Nopal is a key ingredient is many highly effective (and safe) blood sugar regulating nutritional supplements (see resources, below).
• Conventional medicine, including drug companies and the FDA, do not want the public to learn about nopal because it would cost Big Pharma hundreds of millions of dollars in annual profits from diabetes drug sales. The public is intentionally kept ignorant about natural treatments for diabetes as a way to maximize corporate profits.
• Most doctors have never heard of nopal, nor its blood sugar balancing effects, because the use of medicinal herbs is simply not taught in medical school. Virtually all M.D.s are nutritionally illiterate when it comes to herbs and food supplements.
• Native Americans, who are suffering under an epidemic of diabetes, desperately need to be re-taught the medicinal uses of desert plants. If nopal were widely harvested and used to help regulate blood sugar in Native Americans, the diabetes rate would fall sharply. But conventional medicine, dominated primarily by rich white men, chooses to deliberately deny honest information about nutritional supplements to Native Americans. In doing so, Native Americans have been isolated from their land and their medicinal wisdom.
• Organic Nopal Powder from Good Cause Wellness is available in capsule form as a nutritional supplement.
• Nopal powder is also a key ingredient in the Baseline of Health Foundation's Glucotor V.2 supplement, which contains a number of synergistic ingredients that help regulate healthy blood sugar levels.
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