Nutritional Food Additives @ - March 13th 2013!

Prickly Pear Cactus Purchase & Information

prickly pear cactus powder

Alternative Names

Barbary-fig Cactus
Cactus Fruit, Cactus Flowers, Cactus Pear Fruit
Figuier de Barbarie, Figue d'Inde, Fruit de l'Oponce, Fruit du Cactus
Indien-Figue, Indian-fig Prickly Pear Cactus
Nopal Cactus, Nopal, Nopol, Nopales
OPI, Opuntia, Oponce, Opuntia ficus
Tuna Cardona

Make sure you see separate listing for Hoodia, Cereus and Caralluma.

Scientific Name

Scientific names of prickly are Opuntia fuliginosa, Opuntia ficus-indica, Opuntia macrocentra, Opuntia lasciacantha and Opuntia hyptiacantha. Synonyms used for this plant are Opuntia megacantha, Opuntia violacea, Opuntia streptacantha, Opuntia puberula,Opuntia velutina and Opuntia cardona. Whereas, its belongs to the cactaceae family of plants.

Why do People Use Prickly Pear Cactus?

The oral preparations of Opuntia ficus-indica (Prickly pear cactus), like prickly pear cactus powder, is orally used for hypercholesterolemia, as an antiviral agent, diabetes, alcohol-induced hangover (veisalgia) and for obesity. It is also consumed orally for diarrhea, colitis and for benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH).

In Foods Items
The Prickly pear cactus juice is used commercially in candies and jellies.

Is Prickly Pear Cactus Safe to Use?

Likely Safe
Oral consumption of Prickly pear cactus powder in food items is considered safe.

Avoid In Lactation & Pregnancy
Prickly pear cactus should be avoided by pregnant and breast feeding females.

How effective is Prickly Pear Cactus?

Prickly pear cactus powder may show positive and effective result for following conditions:
• Diabetes • Hangover

There are no information available about the effectiveness of Prickly pear cactus for following conditions:
• Benign prostatic hypertrophy (BPH)

How Prickly Pear Cactus Works?

The most effective parts of Opuntia ficus-indica are the fruits, leaves, stems and flowers. Prickly pear cactus is frequently used as a normal diet. Oral consumption of 500 grams of Prickly pear cactus provides 8.25 grams protein, 14.3 grams carbohydrate, 18.85 grams cellulose (stringy polysaccharide), 1.05 grams lipids, 99.75 kilocalories and 455.75 grams water.

Different types of Prickly pear cactus decrease lipid levels and blood glucose. This impact is frequently ascribed to the high stringy polysaccharide substance, including pectin. Fiber can decrease lipid absorption and slow carbohydrate absorption from the gut. But other researchers suspect Prickly pear cactus pear powder may also have an insulin increasing impact. In trial animal model, extract of Prickly pear cactus appears to enhance glucose usage at the cell level, mirroring the insulin activity. The extract seems to be effective at low amounts (1 mg/kg) for reducing the level of down hemoglobin A1C alone or in mixture with insulin. Cooked stems appear to be more beneficial for decreasing blood glucose levels as compared to raw stems. The purpose behind this distinction is not known.

Prickly pear cactus is thought to lessen alcohol induced hangovers by lessening inflammation. Alcohol-induced headaches are related with a provocative reaction. Alcohols containing high quantity of contaminations known as congeners (scotch, whiskey, tequila) are related with increased severity of headache and increased inflammatory response. Individuals with an alcohol incited headache have higher levels of cortisol and inflammatory markers C-reactive protein (CRP). Individuals who take a particular extract of Prickly pear cactus extract appear to have lower cortisol and CRP levels, recommending that Prickly pear cactus may have anti-inflammatory reactions.

Side Effects of Prickly Pear Cactus

Prickly pear cactus powder maybe responsible for some side effects such as nausea issues, mild diarrhea, increased stool frequency, increased stool volume, headache issues and abdominal fullness. It also reduces blood glucose levels in those who are suffering from diabetes, but does not appears to cause hypoglycemia.

How Prickly Pear Cactus Interacts with Herbs & Supplements?

Not known.

How Prickly pear cactus interacts with Drugs?

Chlorpropamide (Diabinese)
Interaction rating between Opuntia ficus-indica and chlorpropamide is moderate, so be careful about this mixture. There is one case where combination of Prickly pear cactus and chlorpropamide was found responsible for additive activity of insulin in type 2 diabetic patients. There is some concern that people taking both chlorpropamide or other hypoglycemic drugs and Prickly pear cactus may have increased hypoglycemia risk.

Glyburide (Diabeta, Micronase)
Interaction rating between Prickly pear cactus powder and glyburide is moderate, so be careful about this mixture. According to clinical experiments, mixture of glyburide and Prickly pear cactus can cause hypoglycemia in patients suffering from type 2 diabetes. So, such patients are advised be careful about their glucose levels.

Metformin (Glucophage)
Interaction rating between Prickly pear cactus powder and metformin is moderate, so be careful about this mixture. According to clinical result, combination of metformin and Prickly pear cactus can result in hypoglycemia in patients suffering from type 2 diabetes. So monitor the blood glucose level very carefully.

How Prickly pear cactus interacts with Foods?

Not known.

How Prickly pear cactus interacts with Lab Tests?

Blood Glucose
Prickly pear cactus can interact by lessening the level of blood glucose and lab tests.

There is no confirmation that Prickly pear cactus may reduce low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol levels.

How Prickly pear cactus interacts with Diseases or Conditions?

Prickly pear cactus can decrease blood glucose in type 2 diabetic patients. Prickly pear cactus may also have additive effects with diabetes medications and therefore cause hypoglycemia issues. So, those patients who are orally taking Prickly pear cactus should be careful about their glucose level.

Prickly pear cactus may interact with blood glucose levels. Prickly pear cactus may also interfere with blood glucose control after and during surgical activities. So, such patients are advised to stop using Prickly pear cactus at least two weeks before suggested surgical activities.

What should be Administration or Dosage of Prickly pear cactus?

• For Diabetic patients, 100-500 grams of broiled stems should be used every day. Doses are generally divided and provided thrice every day.
• For benign prostatic hypertrophy (BPH), 500 mg of dried powdered flowers ingested thrice every day.
• For alcohol-induced headaches issues, 1600 IU of a particular extract of Prickly pear cactus (Tex-OE, Extracts Plus, Inc.) should be orally used five hours before alcohol ingestion.


Primarily Prickly pear cactus is used in Mexican-American and Mexican traditional diet and for type 2 diabetic patients.

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SKU 766 Prickly Pear Cactus Product Purchase

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"These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease."

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