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Is Cactus Water the Health Trend You’ve Been Missing out On?

Why you should nourish yourself with the nectar of nopales.

We know that water is essential for our body to function, although at times just regular water doesn’t really seem to satisfy our tastes and we go on a quest for a new, more delicious, electrolyte-filled beverage. For a time, coconut water was all the craze (and still is), but is cactus water the new plant-based beverage we should all be drinking? And does it really live up to all the hype?

When we think of cacti, we think of a plant species that thrives in arid climates, or sits on the windowsill of our homes in a decorated ceramic planter, but the plant has a whole new appeal now; And according to Byrdie, it may be time to start stocking the fridge because cactus water is better absorbed by our bodies than regular water. Cosmetic chemist Susie Wang told the publication that cactus water is better retained in the body’s cells, organs, nerves, muscles, and other tissues. Plus, it’s filled with electrolytes and can help improve skin, sleep, and energy levels.

Speaking of the skin benefits, dermatologist Rachel Nazarian, MD, told the publication that cactus water is great for helping slow the signs of aging because the skin “benefits from a high number of antioxidants and anti-inflammatories,” which can be found within the cactus.

Cactus water also contains taurine, and Los Angeles-based dietitian Shira Lenchewski explained the benefits to Elle magazine. She said, "Taurine is an amino acid that is naturally made in the body. It functions as a really powerful antioxidant, so it helps to quench free radicals and [reverse] muscle tissue damage." It has also been shown to aid athletic performance as it improves the body's "ability to transport and utilize oxygen (VO2 max)."

Apart from the health benefits of cactus water, founder of True Nopal cactus water, Tom Zummo, summed up the appeal of the product, with taste being a big factor — which is especially beneficial if you don’t like drinking regular water. He told Style Caster, “Consumers are looking for low calorie, low sugar natural hydration with benefits. The wonderful fruity taste and low-calorie and sugar content is converting many coconut water drinkers over.” And cactus water has roughly half the calories of coconut water.

[Image via Shutterstock]

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