Nopales benefits includes promoting weight loss, treating indigestion, a source of antioxidants, keeps skin healthy, fight cancerous cells, improves psychological health, promote bone density, treat ulcer, treat insomnia, boost metabolic rate.
If you are a fan of nutrient-dense food sources, you will love to learn about nopales. Like other natural sources, these contain plenty of nutrients. Consuming nopales is ideal for obese individuals as they contain few calories.
Nopales are starch free, which makes them an excellent food source for people with diabetes. Moreover, health experts encourage senior people to opt for healthy choices. Hence, they can add nopales to their diet to promote their overall health.
What Are Nopales?
People also refer to Nopales as prickly pear cactus or nopal cactus. This is a common fruit in Mexico and North American deserts. You can find dry, canned, or fresh varieties of nopales. Moreover, the sour taste of nopales blends in well in sweet and savory recipes alike. Hence, people widely use Nopal cactus for preparing jellies and jams.
Nutritional Value of Nopales
One cup of nopal cactus contains 61 calories and following nutrients.
- Carbohydrate 14g
- Calcium 3mg
- Dietary fiber 5.4g
- Iron 2mg
- Magnesium 3g
- Niacin 2.2mg
- Pyridoxine 2%
- Pantothenic acid 5%
- Potassium 2mg
- Riboflavin 3mg
- Thiamin 4mg
- Vitamin A 457IU
- Vitamin C 9.3mg
11 Amazing Benefits of Nopales
1. Helps You Lose Weight
Nopal cactus is rich in dietary fiber, which keeps you full for hours. Dietary fiber is also necessary to curb increased appetite that leads to overeating. Moreover, it is one of the low-calorie food sources that you can consume as much as you want. Nopales also contain fewer saturated fats, which obese individuals may appreciate.
You should encourage children to eat at least three servings of nopales in a week to get nutrients and maintain healthy body weight.
2. Treats Indigestion
Indigestion is a common stomach disorder. However, you should not overlook it as constant indigestion can be a symptom of an underlying stomach disorder. Incorporating nopal cactus can regulate your irregular bowel movements in a short time.
This is possible due to a considerable amount of dietary fiber in it. In the case of chronic constipation, you can consume a moderate quantity of nopales to relieve your condition. Also, you need to seek medical help if the symptoms of indigestion continue for days and avoid self-medication.
3. A Source of Antioxidants
Nopales are abundant in vitamin C, which acts as an antioxidant. This nutrient is necessary to fight oxidative stress and free radicals. Moreover, nopal cactus provides a slew of flavonoids as well. When your body gets antioxidants and flavonoids on a daily basis, it prevents the adverse effects associated with lipids.
4. Keeps Skin Healthy
You need to consume plenty of vegetables and fruits to maintain healthy skin. These natural sources are a powerhouse of nutrients that improve the condition of your skin. You should also add nopal cactus to your diet to obtain vitamin C from the fruit.
Vitamin C is your skin’s best friend. It does not only combat the side effects of free radicals but prevents premature aging as well. Vitamin C goes deep into your skin and rejuvenates dead skin cells, which ultimately make your skin smooth and subtle.
Moreover, eating nopales also fulfill the daily requirement of phytochemicals and prevents the onset of various skin infections.
5. It Is Anti-Inflammatory
Incorporating anti-inflammatory food sources into your diet is essential to keep inflammation at bay. Moreover, health experts reveal that inflammation, in most cases, is an indication of underlying infection.
Take note that senior people are more like likely to develop inflammation in their gastrointestinal tract, muscles, and cardiovascular system. Nutrients like riboflavin work well in this condition which you can find in nopales. In addition, this amazing fruit has shown positive effects on children who had urinary tract infection.
6. Fights Cancerous Cells
The antioxidants in nopales protect your organs from oxidation. This nutrient also destroys free radicals and stops the mutation of a healthy cell. Free radicals are dangerous, and they turn healthy cells into cancerous cells that get difficult to treat.
And when you consume nopales, it provides antioxidants along with phytochemicals and flavonoids that protect your body from many harmful factors.
7. Improves Psychological Health
Psychological disorders like memory deterioration are common in senior people. It is true that many external or internal factors lead to psychological problems which you can control by increasing the intake of flavonoids. Flavonoids like quercetin 3-methyl function as a neuro-protector that improve concentration and prevent brain damage.
8. For Bone Density
Calcium and magnesium are crucial when it comes to strengthening your bones. The deficiency of these essential minerals leads to fractures and other bone problems.
Moreover, lack of calcium leads to bone deterioration in senior people. You can protect your bones from severe damage if you take daily doses of calcium and magnesium. Nopales contain a considerable amount of both minerals which is enough to repair broken bones and keep them strong.
9. Ulcer Treatment
An ulcer is a debilitating health ailment which can occur in the stomach, mouth, and intestine. You need to consume foods like nopal cactus to reduce the occurrence of ulcers in your body. The healing, cooling, and anti-inflammatory properties of nopales reduce the inflammation that ulcer often brings.
Health experts suggest that consuming nopal cactus can prevent the risk of ulcer in young and senior people alike.
10. Treats Insomnia
Many studies have concluded that mineral deficiency leads to sleep disorders like insomnia. Nopales are rich in magnesium, a mineral that treats insomnia, anxiety, and restlessness. Magnesium stimulates serotonin, which increases melatonin levels in your body.
This function calms your body by triggering the sedative effect and encourages you to sleep peacefully. There is no question that improper sleep affects the quality of your life. Therefore, try to add at least 3-4 serving of nopales to your diet and treat sleep issues without hurting your health.
11. Boost Metabolic Rate
The nutrients such as thiamine, riboflavin, and niacin improve metabolism significantly. You can find a considerable amount of the nutrients in nopal cactus.
When your body gets adequate doses of the nutrients, it regulates enzyme activity and boosts metabolic rate. This way, you can keep your body energized throughout the day.
Nopales seems an excellent source that you should incorporate in your diet. It provides nutrients and treats health problems at the same time. Although natural sources do not have adverse effects on your health, in case of ulcer, inflammation, or other health problem, visit your doctor immediately. Hence, seeking medical help will prevent your health from potential damage.