10 Top Reasons to Include Papaya Leaves to Your Diet
Papaya leaves, like the papaya fruit, are packed with healthy compounds and nutrients that make papaya leaves extremely beneficial for the body. It is used to treat dengue, malaria, improve immunity, improve skin and hair health, etc.
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Papaya is a lovely and very versatile fruit grown mostly in tropical regions. It is not only delicious in its ripe form; its raw form is also loved all over the world for making salads. The fleshy, juicy fruit has numerous health benefits that are very well known to most people. What would surprise you is that papaya leaves also contain various properties that make them very advantageous to health. Ranging from helping limit Malaria to improving hair growth, the benefits of papaya leaves are many. One of the most popular benefits of papaya leaf is its ability to treat dengue. Papaya leaf is generally consumed in the form of papaya leaf juice. The enzymes present in papaya leaf are easily available to the body in the juice. It is also easy to customize the taste and properties of the juice to best suit the person the drinking it.
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Benefits of Papaya Leaf
These are the benefits of papaya leaves in detail:
1. Supports Digestion
Papaya leaves contain protease and amylase which help in the better digestion of proteins, minerals, and carbohydrates. It also helps in preventing stomach inflammation and colon inflammation. Papain in papaya leaves also helps to prevent stomach ulcers. Essential fiber, chymopapain and papain also help prevent issues such as constipation, bloating and heartburn.
2. Lowers Blood Sugar Levels
Yet another benefit of the consumption of papaya leaf is the lowering of blood sugar levels in the body. It helps regulate the production of insulin in the body, which in turn helps to lower blood sugar levels. Its anti-oxidant properties also help keep complications of diabetes such as damaged kidneys at bay.
3. Treats Dengue Fever
Dengue is a disease transmitted by infected mosquitoes. The disease transmits throughout the body. This disease causes a drastic drop in platelet count in the blood. It is believed that extracts from papaya leaf can help increase blood platelet count.
This increase in platelet count is due to the presence of compounds like papain and carocain. The dosage of about 25 milliliters of papaya leaf juice twice a day is believed to help with improving the health of dengue infected patients.
4. Has Anti-Malarial Properties
A compound found in papaya leaves is Acetogenin. Acetogenin can help reduce the risk of contracting diseases such as malaria and dengue.
5. Good for Liver
Papaya leaf juice works as a cleansing agent for the liver. This helps to protect the liver against numerous chronic liver diseases such as jaundice and liver cirrhosis. The papaya leaf juice can help cleanse the body by lowering cholesterol levels in the body. This helps to protect the liver from the attack of free radicals and the inflammation they cause.
6. Helps Relieve Pre-Menstrual Syndrome Symptoms
The immense pain and discomfort caused to cramps and lower abdominal pain during menstruation can be gotten rid of with the help of papaya leaf juice. It works by easing menstrual flow and alleviating pain.
It works to bring about a balance of hormones in the body and regulates the menstrual cycle. The best way to go about this would be to boil a papaya leaf in water along with tamarind and some salt.
7. Boosts Immunity
Papain and alkaloids, present in papaya leaves, act as anti-oxidants thereby giving the body’s immunity a much-needed boost.
8. May Reduce The Risk of Cancer
It is believed that papaya leaves work as anti-cancer agents, owing to the presence of Actogenin in them. Their anti-inflammatory properties also seem to help relieve inflammation caused due to the disease or even the side-effects that are a result of extensive chemotherapy given to cancer patients.
9. Helps Treat Skin Problems
Vitamins C and A are known to promote healthy and radiant skin. Both of these are found abundantly in papaya leaf juice. The presence of another compound, karpain, in papaya leaf helps to get rid of unwanted micro-organisms, cleansing the skin and thereby, keeping pimple, acne and dark spots at bay.
10. Improves Hair Health
Karpain found in papaya leaves also helps to get rid of oil and dirt from the scalp. This, in turn, facilitates better hair growth, prevents and works as an anti-dandruff agent. It also adds shine to your hair, giving it an immediate healthy look. It is also known to help prevent thinning of hair or even balding. These properties of papaya make it a very popular ingredient in shampoos, conditioners, and various other hair products.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here we have answered few FAQs about papaya leaf benefits.
1. What is the best way to make Papaya Leaf Juice?
There are several ways to make Papaya Leaf Juice.
1. Take 5-10 fresh and tender leaves. Wash them thoroughly under the running water. Next, put them in the blender and blend thoroughly to a smooth consistency. Strain the mixture using a thin cloth or a sieve. Fill the fresh juice in glass bottles and refrigerate to use later.
2. Partly dry some medium-sized papaya leaves after thoroughly washing them. Cut them into small pieces. Place the leaves in a saucepan with 2 litres of water. Bring the water and leaves to boil and let them simmer. Do not cover the saucepan until the water is reduced by half, strain the liquid. Once cooled, fill this extract in glass containers.
3. Take some papaya leaves and crush them in a mortar and pestle. Next, squeeze the crushed leaves using a muslin cloth or through your clean hands. Once you get the juice from the extract, drink 2 tablespoons twice a day.
2. How can I use Papaya leaves for a healthy scalp?
While drinking Papaya leaf juice is one way to achieve many health benefits, you can also apply papaya leaf paste to your scalp. All you need to do is crush fresh papaya leaves in a mortar and pestle or blitz it in the mixer. Once it has a paste like consistency, apply it on your scalp. By doing this you can easily remove the excess oil, dirt, and grime at the roots. It also nourishes and moisturises the scalp and prevents the formation of dandruff.
3. Can I chew on raw Papaya leaves without juicing them?
It is usually suggested to juice them or boil them, rather than chewing on them. Reason being, you can make it more palatable by adding lime juice or honey to the leaf juice or even dilute it with a little bit of water. Papaya leaves are very bitter in taste and not everyone can digest them. Also, there is always a chance of developing an allergy from the raw leaf, itchy eyes and runny nose are the common ones.
While the many benefits of papaya leaves make them seem like the best item to add to your diet, there are certain things you need to look out for. Papaya and its various components are best to be avoided by pregnant women. Since they help lower blood sugar levels, one should be careful about just how much papaya leaves they consume. A drastic drop in blood sugar levels can have fatal results. Always consult a doctor before making any decisions regarding a change in diet.