What kind of nutrition benefits does the cactus pear have?


Quick Answer

Cactus pears, also known as prickly pears, are rich in vitamin C and minerals such as calcium, magnesium and potassium. One prickly pear contains approximately 42 calories, 1 gram of fat, 5 milligrams of sodium, 10 grams of carbohydrates, 4 grams of dietary fiber and 1 gram of protein.

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Full Answer

Native to the southwestern United States, prickly pears are thought to relieve some hangover symptoms, such as nausea and dry mouth. One species, Opuntia streptacantha, can potentially decrease blood sugar levels in people with Type 2 diabetes. However, there is not enough research as of 2014 to determine its long-term effectiveness. People who are taking medications to treat diabetes must use caution when taking any sort of prickly pear treatment, as it may cause blood sugar to drop too low.

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