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By Frank Yaconis
Nopalea Juice, which is made from the Prickly Pear Cactus, appears to be one of the most useful plants in the world for human consumption. You can eat it, you can drink it and now you can be massaged by it. Apparently, a Mexican luxury resort treats its interested guests to massages with a prickly free version of the plant mixed with Agave and tequila.
A cactus massage is only one of the interesting services offered to guests at spas around the world. Adventurous spa goers can also see out the following services, that include obtaining a fish pedicure, where fish eat the dead skin off your feet; a snake massage where a masseuse dribbles one or two snakes on your back and lets them slither around; a facial made from thin gold strips laid on the face, which is said to have originated with Cleopatra; a rear-end buffing and waxing procedure; and bathing in a pool of wine or a vat of beer.
For those of us who view the cactus as a food and medicine (it is renowned for its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties), there are many ways to ingest it.
The prickly pear cactus grows all across North America, where it is a native species, but it has also been transplanted around the world. But remember it is a native to Mexico and the southern United States.
Its use as a food and medicine dates back to the Aztecs who also ate it and harvested it for its medicinal qualities.
If you want to drink the plant for its benefits, the easiest method is to buy Nopalea Juice, which is an all-natural mixture that combines the cactus with Agave juice and several other tasty and healthy fruits. It is overflowing with a variety of vitamins and minerals.
There are many ways to eat the plant. You can grill, broil, fry or boil the pads, which are called Nopalitos. They are delicious and taste a bit like asparagus or green beans. Many people just add oil or butter and eat them plain this way. By the way, nopalitos means cactus stem.
The fruit of the prickly pear cactus (which is where the term “pear” comes from) can also be eaten. The plant erupts into beautiful blossoms, as well that are yellow, purple or red. They are also edible.
Did you know that the meat and fruit and blossoms from the cactus are made into numerous foods? They are used for making candy, with tuna in a salad, in chili, stews, salads, salsas and even soups. Authentic Mexican restaurants will almost always have them on the menu. A very popular way for a restaurant to serve the cactus is with eggs or in tacos. With eggs, they are called heuvos con Nopales, if you see that you know it is the cactus.
The cactus is very good for you — so nutritious. It is chock full of dietary fiber and has numerous vitamins and minerals. It is a great way to eat something healthy, while you are also taking steps to prevent future diseases and ailments. Good for your body now and later.
About the Author: Frank Yocanis has been researching and writing about the health benefits of
for the past decade. He has even traveled to the Sonoran desert half a dozen times to study
in the plant’s homeland. He is excited to share how this antioxidant-rich drink can change your life.