Papaya extract is derived from the fruit of the plant carica papaya, which is native to Central America. This tropical fruit is packed with valuable nutrients and antioxidants and contains powerful enzymes that are used in the treatment of some ailments. Consuming papaya extract is an excellent way to support your body with healthful benefits.
Like the fruit, the papaya leaf and papaya leaf extract contain high quantities of papain and chymopapain, aka enzymes responsible for overall health and well-being.
Papaya fruit is a rich source of valuable proteolytic enzymes, such as papain, that can greatly aid in the digestive process.
Papayas are commonly consumed for proper digestion. The presence of papain, improves digestion by breaking down proteins and also cleanses the digestive tract. This ensures a reduced conversion of protein into body fat. If the protein in our diet is not digested properly, it may cause arthritis, constipation, diabetes, high blood pressure, and other related health conditions.
Chemicals in the enzyme papain may reduce overall inflammation. They also may decrease pain and inflammation experienced with rheumatoid arthritis and help improve healing of injuries and reduce swelling following surgery. An article published in “Experimental and Clinical Pharmacology” in July 2001 noted that papain shows strong anti-inflammatory activities in the treatment of infectious arthritis.
High concentrations of vitamin A and C in papaya leaves work to strengthen your immune system and keep colds and coughs from returning. A study in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology also concluded that papaya leaf extracts can boost Th1 type cytokines in the immune system. These signaling molecules regulate the immune system, giving papaya more immunotherapeutic benefits and providing treatment and prevention of certain diseases and allergic disorders.
Research has shown that papaya can stop the growth of breast cancer cells, halt metastasis, and normalize the cell cycle; and scientists at the University of Illinois believe that its antioxidant activity contributes to its effectiveness as an anti-cancer agent. University of Florida researchers did studies showing that papaya leaves contain agents that can kill cancer, especially cancer of the cervix, prostate, liver, breast, and lung.
Here are some of the specific ways in which papaya leaf can potentially help those with cancer:
Chemotherapy: Papaya leaves can enhance chemotherapy effectiveness and help with chemotherapy side effects.
Immune Function: Papaya leaves contain lots of powerful antioxidants and can boost your immune system. In particular, papaya leaves produce “Th1,” an anti-cancer cytokine.
Platelets: Papaya leaf tea can reverse thrombocytopenia (low platelet counts), a common condition in patients treated for cancer which keeps blood from clotting. Several studies have shown that papaya leaf tea can increase platelet counts, and an international patent has now been filed for its use in improving low platelet counts.
Poor Appetite: Many cancer patients suffer from lack of appetite. Papaya leaf tea improves appetite, bringing vigor and vitality back to the body.
Malnutrition: Papaya leaves contain vitamins A, B, C, D and E, as well as antioxidant flavonoids and carotenes. They also contains 50 or more different amino acids such as threonine, glutamate acid, glycine, valine, leucine, phenylalanine, lysine, tritophan, cysteine, histidine, tyrosine, alanine, proline, aspartate, and digestive enzymes like papain which help digest protein, carbohydrates and fats.