Nopal Cactus (Prickly Pear Contains Valine (Essential Amino Acid)

(*) See References and Disclaimer at the bottom of the page.

Nopal Cactus (Prickly Pear) contains valine that helps the body recover from all types of injury such as burns, cuts, and muscle tearing(1*).

Because of its role in building muscle(2*), valine is often taken as a supplement by both bodybuilders and weightlifters. In addition to helping the muscles repair themselves(*)valine can also be used as 'energy' when the muscles need a quick source of fuel(3*). This also conserves Adenosine Triphosphate (ATP) for use elsewhere.

What really makes valine sought after for muscle building is its role in maintaining the nitrogen balance of the body(4*). Simply put, a positive nitrogen balance means there is protein for the body to draw on (i.e. to build muscles with) whereas a negative nitrogen balance means there is a deficit of protein—the body is losing more protein than it is taking in(5*).

Athletes and those who train very hard for long periods of time may require supplementation with valine and other amino acids because prolonged, intense training increases the demand for amino acids by the body(6*). Individuals who are severely injured may also take valine supplements to help their body repair itself faster(7*). Valine has also been used for management of drug addiction(8*).

Sources of Valine

Dairy, Eggs, Fish Meat, Poultry and Nopal Cactus (Prickly Pear) from Natural Home Cures Freeze Dried Nopal Powder Capsules (Prickly Pear).


     Source References
(1) Wikipedia: Valine
(2) WebMD: Valine
(3) About Chemistry Valine
(4) Web Book: Valine
(5) Dummies Books: Building Muscle with Isoleucine, Leucine and Valine
(6) ChemSpider: Valine
(7) PubChem: Valine
(8) The Biology Project: Valine