Papaya is famous for its refreshing and delicious fruit. But do you know that its leaves packs essentials nutrients that can fight certain diseases such as dengue fever and anemia? It has been proven in repeated tests in India that papaya leaf juice can boost platelet count which indicates its effectiveness to treat certain blood conditions.
Platelets are special cells in the blood that are responsible for the formation of blood clots. They play a vital role in closing wounds and speeding up recovery from injuries. A normal platelet count ranges from 150,000 to 450,000 per microliter of blood and these numbers vary between males and females. Having more than 450,000 is an abnormality called thrombocytosis resulting in the formation of random blood clots while having platelets lower than 150,000 is called thrombocytopenia which leads to hemorrhage.
There are several factors that lead to thrombocytopenia. Possible reasons could be that the bone marrow is not producing enough platelets or could be caused by anemia.
Dengue fever is a life-threatening viral disease transmitted by mosquitoes. Early symptoms are having intermittent fevers that gradually leads to thrombocytopenia, sometimes leads to death when untreated. The World Health Organization reports that there is still no definitive medical cure for the disease even today that’s why early detection is the key to effective treatment.
India and most parts in Asia have been experiencing several dengue outbreaks in the last few decades and the possibility of using papaya leaves as natural treatment is a welcome development.
Here Are A Few Notable Studies Regarding The Effectiveness Of Papaya Leaves In Treating Dengue Fever
It is recorded in 2011 in Pakistan where researchers administered papaya leaf extracts to dengue fever patients twice daily. After five days, they’ve seen a significant rise in the patient’s platelet by more than three times.
Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine Volume 2013 noted that papaya leaf extract speeds up the increase of platelet count among dengue fever patients (this include grades 1 and 2, and even patients with dengue hemorrhagic fever).
Another finding in 2016 was published in the June edition of the Journal of the Association of India regarding two studies providing substantial proof of the positive effects of papaya leaf extract on platelets. One study was composed of 300 subjects and is placebo-controlled and the other study involves 400 patients.
Other Health Benefits Of Papaya Leaf Juice
Papaya leaf juice not only treats thrombocytopenia caused by dengue fever. It is also full of nutrients and other health benefits, including the following:
It Cleanses The Liver – Both the leaves and the fruit has powerful cleansing properties that help prevent chronic disease like cirrhosis.
It Helps Treat Ulcers – the powerful antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties in papaya leaves make them an effective treatment against peptic ulcers.
It Improves Digestion – the natural enzymes papain and chymopapain present in papaya leaves can help cleanse the colon and prevent constipation.
It Improves Hair And Skin – another beneficial compound present in papaya leaves is karpain. It helps eliminate acne and other harmful microorganisms from the skin. It also helps enhance hair growth and prevent balding.
It Lowers Blood Sugar Levels – papaya leaves also contains compounds that help regulate insulin in the body, thus, keeping blood sugar levels in check.
How To Make A Papaya Leaf Juice
If you have a juicer, you can simply put the (cleaned) leaves through your juicer to extract the juice. A masticating juicer does the job best. Juice and store away a small bottle of the juice in the fridge to be consumed within 4-5 days.
If you don’t have a juicer, a blender will do but you will have to do a little more work. Crush about 10 leaves and put into your blender with a cup of pure drinking water. Blend the leaves and strain out the juice using a cheese or muslin cloth.
Caution: Papaya leaf juice is horribly bitter and extremely potent. Start with only one tablespoon a day and work up to a maximum of two tablespoons a day, if taking for therapeutic purpose. Drink it neat. DO NOT drink water (or other fluids) immediately after, to allow the concentrated juice to work its miracle.