Most people who are familiar with guavas only think of the fruit of significance. But it’s actually not. The leaves, as underrated as they are, actually have a lot of health benefits. Check out today’s article to learn about some of the top health benefits of guava leaves.
Health Benefits of Guava Leaves
Guava leaves, as it turns out, have lots of health benefits. Here are some of the main ones.
- Rich in antioxidants: Guava leaves are rich in antioxidants like tannins, carotenoids, flavonoids, and polyphenols. These antioxidants play an important role in protecting your body from diseases. But that’s not all – the antioxidants limit the damage from free radicals, and also limits the growth of cancer cells.
- Great source of fiber: In many parts of the world, guava leaves have traditionally been used as a digestive aid, and for good reason. These leaves are high in dietary fiber which are great for promoting healthy digestion. They are especially good for relieving constipation, and promoting good gut health (which, in turn, has a huge impact on your overall health).
- Anti-inflammatory: Here’s yet another way the antioxidants mentioned earlier are good for you – they help reduce (if not prevent) inflammation. Inflammations are usually what causes aches and pains, and a whole host of illnesses, so guess what happens when your inflammation levels are brought down.
- Antibacterial: Guava leaves don’t just have antioxidants, they also have antibacterial properties. In some parts of the world, they’re used as a natural “bandaid”, as they can help mend wounds faster. Talk about an effective natural bandage.
- Aids weight loss: Guava leaves have properties that can help promote weight loss. They do this thanks to their ability to reduce the conversion of complex starches into glucose. They’ve also demonstrated the ability to prevent carbs from being converted to usable compounds. This can mean less glucose (and fat) from the same amount of carb you eat. Can be worth trying out. By the way, this does not mean you should go nuts on pasta or go on a binge – try it out for a week and see how it works for you, especially if you’re trying to lose weight.
- Good for gut health: As mentioned earlier, guava leaves are high in dietary fiber, which are great for digestion. They are also good for promoting a healthy gut as the fibers help the good bacteria in your gut. Moreover, the antibacterial properties in the leaves can help stimulate the digestive enzymes which aid in removing the bad bacteria in the gut lining. The leaves also have beneficial properties which help remove toxic enzymes – this can be very useful for stomach issues like nausea, aches, etc.
- Diarrhea treatment: The antibacterial properties of guava leaves have been shown to be effective in treating diarrhea. In fact, studies have demonstrated that guava leaf extract can stop the growth of the bacteria which causes diarrhea (Staphylococcus aureus).
- Can help with cancer treatment: The antioxidants present in guava leaves can be quite useful in limiting the risks of cancer, especially the antioxidant properties of lycopene (which has been linked with cancer prevention).
- Good for Diabetes: Guava leaves have been shown to aid in lowering blood sugar levels, and reduce the activity of the alpha-glucosidase enzyme. They also limit the absorption of sucrose and maltose by the body. All these has very beneficial impact on lowering and managing diabetes.
- Good for Dengue fever: The use of guava leaves for medicinal purposes is not really new (even though it is unfamiliar in many parts of the world, especially the West). In fact, they have been used for centuries. And one of the most common medicinal use for it has been to treat dengue fever. They help with dengue thanks to their ability to promote blood platelets production.
You’d never really think that such an underrated plant would have so many health benefits. Most people wouldn’t even consider there being any use for guava leaves – they are generally just seen as leaves on a fruit bearing tea, and nothing more. But as you learned in this guide, these leaves actually pack a surprising amount of nutritional punch. If you have a plant around you, or can get your hands on some (especially when you’re traveling), they can be worth trying out won’t you say.
That said, as with anything in life it’s important to do your own homework, especially when it comes to something as important as your health. What’s good for one person, or even most people, is not necessarily good for everyone. This is merely a guide, to inform you of ways this underrated plant can be beneficial – we are not doctors, this is not medical advice, and we have no way of knowing if you have any sensitivities or allergies. At the end of the day, only you will know what might or might not be good for you – consult your doctor and/or a nutritionist in case of doubts (especially if you’re prone to allergies).
By the way, keep an eye out for the next installment of this article, which will have the other top ten health benefits of Guava leaves, as well as tips on how to best use them.
Are you familiar with the consumption of guava leaves for health and medicinal purposes?
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