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Nopal is prickly pear and has been used as a food source in Mexico and the southwestern United States. It contains fiber and pectin components that are thought to have hypoglycemic activity. It is also thought to lower cholesterol. In type 2 diabetes patients, nopal has been shown to decrease postprandial glucose. Most studies have been small, uncontrolled trials published in Spanish only. Reported adverse effects include GI upset and dermatitis.

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Laura Shane-McWhorter, PharmD, BCPS, FASCP, CDE, BC-ADM
November 24, 2001

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Last Updated: Wednesday December 31, 2014 20:55:33
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