Nopals are the young flat thick part of the cactus that we can eat in a salad and is used in Mexican cuisine.
The benefits of the nopal:
1. Low calorie vegetable with vital phytochemicals, fiber, anti-oxidants, vitamins and minerals.
2. The nopal is beneficial in weight reduction, cholesterol and blood sugar levels. Its fiber aids in digestion and helps relieve constipation.
3. It is said that the juice is an immune-booster and has anti inflammatory properties.
4. There are moderate amounts of Vitamin A and B-carotene, which help protect the skin, lungs and oral cavity from cancer.
5. Nopal also contains small level of B-complex vitamins, which are essential for cellular enzymatic and metabolic functions in the body.
6. Average levels of Vitamin C which is a natural anti oxidant and it boosts immunity. It helps reduce the harmful free radicals in the body.
Nopals can be eaten raw in salads, salsa, soups, stews and cooked as a vegetable. A delicious way to eat Nopal is grilled. Nopals can be pickled as an appetizer. The juice is produced for its health benefits.