Papaya is one of the main ingredients in many of our favorite exfoliating formulas, and some experts say it can even speed up bruise healing. However, University of Florida researchers now say that this tropical fruit’s benefits are much more than skin-deep.
According to a report published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology, papaya can help fight breast, cervical, lung, liver and pancreatic cancers. Using dried papaya leaf extract, the researchers were able to singnal Th1-type cytokines, molecules that aid in regulating the immune system.
The more papaya leaf tea to which cells were exposed, the stronger the anti-tumor effect. Healthy cells stayed healthy, showing no negative side effects.
Papaya has been used as a folk remedy throughout Asia and Australia for centuries, but the researcers are hoping to patent the process behind their discovery in order to market a modern-day medicine.
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