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Coca leaf Health benefits and Side effects

Image result for Coca leaf and tree

Coca is a plant. It is the source of cocaine, which is an illegal drug that is used nasally, injected, or smoked for mind-altering effects. Cocaine is also an FDA-approved Schedule C-II drug. This means cocaine can be prescribed by a healthcare provider, but the process is strictly regulated. The worry about cocaine is that it is unsafe and highly addictive.

 Despite safety concerns and illegality, the coca leaf is used to make medicine.

 

 People chew coca leaves to relieve hunger and fatigue and to enhance physical performance.

Related image

 

 Coca extracts are used for stimulating stomach function, causing sedation, and treating asthma, colds, and other ailments.

 

 Coca tea is used for altitude sickness in the Peruvian Andes and elsewhere.

 

 A form of cocaine that can be applied to the skin is available by prescription. It is used to numb eye, nose, and throat pain; and to narrow blood vessels.

 

 In manufacturing, coca extract with the cocaine removed is used to flavor cola drinks and food products.

 

How does it work?

 

The cocaine found in coca can cause an increase in brain activity and have numbing (anesthetic) effects. Cocaine is highly addictive.

Nutrition Benefits of the Coca Leaf:

The coca leaf has been found to be a valuable dietary supplement. Several studies analyzed the nutrition characteristics of the coca leaf. Two notable ones include, a 2009 study published in the Food & Nutrition Bulletin (Can coca leaves contribute to improving the nutritional status of the Andean population?, Penny, Zavaleta, et al.) and a1975 Harvard study (Nutritional Value of Coca Leaf, Duke, Aulick, Plowman). They found that per 100g the leaves contained:

 

 Image result for coca leaf used cool drinks

Carbohydrates (44.3 g)

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