Prickly Pear is the fruit of commonly available cactus species "Indian Fig Opuntia" in all over the world. Botanical name of this plant is "Opuntia" a member of Cactus family known as "زقم" in Pashto & "Nagphani ناگ پھنی" in Urdu & Hindi. This cactus grows in dry lands everywhere in the world specially in hard warmer areas. The fruit of this cactus is edible and most commonly in India & Pakistan large number of people consume it. It has many medicinal values and use for cure of a number of diseases in not only in Herbal Medicine but in the modern way of treatment too. We can feel the presence of this plant in many landscapes and natural theme parks, even in lawns and pots in garden too.
Mr.Akhlak Khan Kakar collected some useful information and medicinal uses of this plant and its fruit.
کولیسٹرال کی سطح کو کم کرتی ہے۔ عمل انہضام کے عمل کو بہتر بناتی ہے۔ ذیابیطس کے خطرے کو کم کرتی ہے۔ مدافعتی نظام بہتر بناتی ہے۔ خون کی وریدوں کو مضبوط کرتی ہے۔ الزائمر کا خطرہ کم کرتی ہے، وزن میں کمی کی کوششوں میں مدد، اور پورے جسم میں سوجن کو ختم کرتی ہے۔ اسہال، یہ بھی وائرل انفیکشن سے لڑنے کے لئے استعمال کیا جاتا ہے.
Prickly pea Cactus is a plant. It is part of the diet in Mexican and Mexican-American cultures. Only the young plant is eaten; older plants are too tough. Prickly pear cactus is also used for medicine.
Prickly pear cactus is used for type 2 diabetes, high cholesterol, obesity, alcohol hangover, colitis, diarrhea, and benign prostatic hypertrophy (BPH). It is also used to fight viral infections.
In foods, the prickly pear juice is used in jellies and candies.
Most research on this product has been performed in Mexico by one research group.
How does it work?
Prickly pear cactus contains fiber and pectin, which can lower blood glucose by decreasing the absorption of sugar in the stomach and intestine. Some researchers think that it might also decrease cholesterol levels, and kill viruses in the body.
Some of the health benefits of prickly pear include its ability to lower cholesterol levels, improve the digestive process, decrease the risk of diabetes, boost the immune system, stimulate bone growth, strengthen blood vessels, prevent certain cancers, reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s, aid in weight loss attempts, and eliminate inflammation throughout the body.
‘Prickly pear’ is the common name of the fruit that grows at the tops of the leaves of Nopales cacti. Spread throughout North and South America, about 200 different species of Nopales (scientific name Opuntia) cacti are found, all of which have some form of this prickly pear fruit, although not all varieties are edible. The most commonly used species in terms of eating and cooking would be the O. ficus-indica, also known as the Indian Fig Opuntia. The most interesting thing about this fruit is that it grows at the very edge of the spiny leaves of these imposing cacti, which are some of the hardiest lowland cacti in the world, a trait also taken on by its fruit. The fruits are oval in shape, and can range in color from yellow and light green to orange, pink, and red, depending on the variety and ripeness.
Before eating a prickly pear, it is very important to remove the skin and peel it off so all of the spines are removed. If they aren’t, the glochids can lodge themselves in your lips, gums, and throat, which can be very painful. After that, however, the fruit can be used for a variety of things, either eaten raw or dry, and made into various jellies and jams, candies, or alcoholic beverages like vodka.
Photo Source: Google
Photo Source: Google