Contents 1 Nutrient content 2 Research 3 Economic value 4 Lifecycle 5 References

Nutrient content[edit] Per US cup serving, nopal fruit is an excellent source of the dietary mineral manganese (20% of the Daily Value, DV) and a good source of vitamin C (13% DV), magnesium (11% DV) and calcium (14% DV),[4] with nutrient content improving as the plant matures.[5] Its calcium may not be biologically available because it is present as calcium oxalate, a non-absorbable complex in the small intestine.[6]

Research[edit] Dietary nopales is under preliminary research for how it may affect the glycemic index.[7]

Economic value[edit] Fresh nopal for sale at a market. The nopal cactus grows extensively throughout Mexico, being especially abundant in the central Mexican arid and semi arid regions. In Mexico there are over three million hectares (ha) of land used to cultivate nopal. There are three typical ways to cultivate nopal cacti — commercial plantations, family farms and gardens, or in the wild. The main use for cultivated nopal is for feed for livestock with one hundred and fifty thousand hectares designated to that purpose.[citation needed] After that, approximately 57,000 ha are used to produce prickly pear fruit, 10,500 ha for the pads production, and 100 ha to cochineal production.[citation needed] In 1996 there were 20,300 prickly pear farmers, as well as around 8000 general nopal farmers, with all of the people involved in the processing industries and in cochineal production, employing a significant number of the Mexican population.[citation needed] Nopal is grown in eighteen of the Mexican states with 74% in the Distrito Federal, with an annual yield of 58,000 tons of both the tuna and the pads.[8] The farming of nopal provides many subsistence communities with employment, food, income, and allows them to remain on their land. Detection of the cactus-eating moth Cactoblastis cactorum in Mexico in 2006 caused anxiety among the country's phytosanitary authorities, as this insect can be potentially devastating for the cactus industry.[9] On the other hand, the same insect was successfully used in Australia in 1925 to control the cactus population, as it became an invasive species after its introduction.[10]

Lifecycle[edit] See also: Biological life cycle Bud appears Bud grows Bud continues to grow Baby pad grows Pad continues to grow. Some prefer to eat them at this early stage. Adult pad, ready to be eaten Spines start developing. Some prefer to eat them at this later stage.

References[edit] ^ Chavez-Moreno, Ck; Casas, A; Tecante, A (2009). "The Opuntia (Cactaceae) and Dactylopius (Hemiptera: Dactylopiidae) in Mexico: a historical perspective of use, interaction and distribution". Biodeversity and Conservation. 18: 3337–3355. doi:10.1007/s10531-009-9647-x.  ^ Aliza Green, Field Guide to Produce, Quirk Productions, 2004, pp. 214–215, ISBN 1-931686-07-6 ^ Daniel, Frank Jack (April 16, 2007). "Thorny Mexican food staple gains fame as folk cure". Reuters. Archived from the original on July 3, 2007.  ^ "Nopales, Raw, Nutrition Facts, USDA SR-21". Conde Nast.  ^ Hernández-Urbiola, M. I.; Pérez-Torrero, E; Rodríguez-García, M. E. (2011). "Chemical analysis of nutritional content of prickly pads (Opuntia ficus indica) at varied ages in an organic harvest". International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 8 (5): 1287–95. doi:10.3390/ijerph8051287. PMC 3108109 . PMID 21655119.  ^ Mcconn, Michele; Nakata, Paul (February 2004). "Oxalate Reduces Calcium Availability in the Pads of the Prickly Pear Cactus Through Formation of Calcium Oxalate Crystals". Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. 52 (5): 1371–1374. doi:10.1021/jf035332c. PMID 14995148. Retrieved 2006-08-10.  ^ M Bacardi-Gascon, D Duenas-Mena and A Jimenez-Cruz (May 2007). "Lowering effect on postprandial glycemic response of nopales added to Mexican breakfasts". Diabetes Care. 30 (5): 1264–1265. doi:10.2337/dc06-2506. PMID 17325260.  ^ Vigueras, G.A.L; Portillo, L. (December 2001). "Uses of Opuntia Species and the Potential Impact of Cactoblastis cactorum (Lepidoptera: Pyralidae) in Mexico". The Florida Entomologist. 84 (4): 493–498. doi:10.2307/3496377.  ^ Cactus-eating moth threatens favorite Mexican food[permanent dead link] (Mon Feb 19, 2007) ^ Patterson, Ewen K. 1936. The World's First Insect Memorial. "The Review of the River Plate", December pp. 16–17 v t e Mexican cuisine List of Mexican dishes Soups and stews Birria Caldo de pollo Caldo de queso Caldo de siete mares Caldo tlalpeño Caldo Xóchitl Chileatole Clemole Cocido Lime soup Mancha manteles Menudo Mole de olla Pinole Pozole Sopa de fideo Sopa de nopal Tortilla soup Crema de nuez Rice dishes Arroz a la tumbada Arroz blanco Arroz negro Arroz poblano Arroz rojo Morisqueta Egg dishes Huevos a la mexicana Huevos al albañil Huevos divorciados Huevos motuleños Huevos rancheros Machacado con huevo Vegetable dishes Calabacitas con elote Chile relleno Chiles en escabeche Chiles en nogada Chipotle Elote Esquites Frijoles charros Frijoles negros Frijoles Puercos Guasanas Nopal asado Pepita Rajas con crema Refried beans Romeritos Poultry dishes Arroz con pollo Chicken feet Escabeche oriental Mole poblano Pollo motuleño Tinga de pollo Tlatonile Pork dishes Adobada Calabacitas con puerco Carne de chango Carnitas Chicharrón en salsa Chileajo de cerdo Chilorio Chorizo Cochinita pibil Cueritos Poc Chuc Beef dishes Alambre Aporreadillo Albóndigas al chipotle Beef brain Beef tongue Cabeza Carne a la tampiqueña Carne asada Carne seca Criadillas Machaca Milanesa Pachola Picadillo Puntas Salpicón Tinga de res Seafood dishes Aguachile Cahuamanta Camarones al ajillo Ceviche Huachinango a la Veracruzana Mixmole de pescado Mojarra frita Pan de cazón Pescadito Pescado al ajillo Pescado a la talla Pescado zarandeado Pulpo a la campechana Other protein dishes Al pastor Barbacoa Cabrito Chahuis Chapulines Discada Entomatada Escamoles Jumiles Maguey worm Mixiote Moronga Pastel azteca Relleno negro Tripas Cheese dishes Chicharrón de queso Queso en salsa Queso flameado Antojitos of corn dough Cazuelita Chalupa Chilaquiles Chimichanga Chochoyote Corn tortilla Corunda Doblada Duros Empalme Enchilada Gordita Guajolota Huarache Molote Nachos Panucho Papadzules Piedra Quesadilla Salbute Sope or Memela Taco Tamale Taquito Tlacoyo Tlayuda Tostada Totopo Antojitos of wheat dough Burrito Cemita Empalme Enchilada Gringas Guajolota Mollete Nachos Pambazo Paste Quesadilla Sincronizada Taco Taquito Torta Wheat tortilla Sauces and condiments Adobo Mole negro Mole blanco Mole poblano Mole sauce Mole verde Recado rojo Salsa Salsa roja cocida Salsa roja cruda Salsa verde cocida Salsa verde cruda Caldillo rojo Caldillo verde Salsa pasilla Salsa guajillo Desserts and sweets Alegría Arroz con leche Bionico Cajeta Capirotada Chongos zamoranos Churros Cocadas Coyotas Flan Fried ice cream Mango con chile Mazapán Nicuatole Panela Qurabiya Tres leches cake Salads Caesar salad Curtido Ensalada de nopalitos Guacamole Pico de gallo Breads Bolillo Buñuelo Cemita Cochinito de Piloncillo Cocol Concha Pan de muerto Pan dulce Rosca de reyes Beverages Agave nectar Agua de jamaica Beer Café de olla Chamoyada Champurrado Curado Horchata Mangonada Margarita Mexican tea culture Pópo Pozol Related topics Aztec cuisine Baja Med Comal Cuisine of Chiapas Cuisine of Veracruz Escuela de Gastronomía Mexicana Oaxacan cuisine Taco stand Tex-Mex Category Commons Cookbook Food portal WikiProject Retrieved from "" Categories: Aztec societyDiabetesMexican cuisineNatural history of MesoamericaNew Mexican cuisineOpuntiaStem vegetablesHidden categories: All articles with dead external linksArticles with dead external links from February 2018Articles with permanently dead external linksAll articles with unsourced statementsArticles with unsourced statements from April 2015

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