Prickly Pear Cactus Hangover Remedy: A Morning Miracle

Prickly Pear Cactus Hangover Remedy: A Morning Miracle

Prickly pear cactus (also called opuntia ficus-indica) has been used for generations as a hangover remedy. It is said to work miracles for those who wake up with a pounding headache and cotton mouth.

No one needs a hangover, but once you have gone through the vicious cycle of dehydration, nausea, pain and other unpleasantries that come with this condition you begin to look for ways to avoid it.

Prickly Pear Cactus (opuntia ficus-indica) is a great hangover remedy that can help combat all of these undesirable effects.

Prickly Pear Cactus Hangover Remedy

Here we'll dive into the prickly pear cactus hangover remedy, how prickly pear extract helps hangovers, the science and studies behind prickly pear, how to take and supplement prickly pear for hangovers, and other benefits to using prickly pear.

What is Prickly Pear Cactus?

The prickly pear cactus (Opuntia ficus-indica) is a flat-stemmed, fleshy, pear-shaped cactus that produces edible fruits and pads. The fruit of the prickly pear cactus is also called a tuna or cactus fig.

The plant is native to Mexico, Central America and South America but has spread throughout the world. It is often found native within within the US in New Mexico and Arizona.

The fruit and pads are used as food in several countries where it grows, while the juice and stems can be used to make dyes, medicines and alcoholic beverages. If you've ever been to Mexico, you've probably seen prickly pear smoothies or ice cream.

It has been used in traditional Mexican folk medicine as a treatment for diabetes and high cholesterol, and in the treatment of stomach disorders, diarrhea, and of course, hangovers.

How Does it Help with Hangovers?

If you're looking for some alternative hangover remedies, a prickly pear cactus (opuntia ficus-indica) may be just the cure.

It's been used as a hangover cure by the people of Mexico for centuries.

The prickly pear fruit is full of antioxidants and polyphenols, which are substances shown to reduce inflammation and help fight free radicals in your body.

According to research, the prickly pear cactus can help protect cells against the oxidative damage caused by alcohol consumption.²

Prickly pear cactus is high in antioxidants and contains bioflavonoids, which may help reduce nausea, vomiting, headaches in people with hangovers.

It also contains electrolytes, which are depleted after drinking alcohol.

What's the Prickly Pear Hangover Science?

There's numerous studies on prickly pear in regards to helping hangovers to prove the science of this cactus, which validates using prickly pear supplement hangover.

Here we review a few prickly pear hangover studies.

1. Effects of Prickly Pear on symptoms of a hangover¹
In a clinical trial done using prickly pear (opuntia ficus indica), the risk of a severe hangover was reduced by half based on their index.¹

Results showed that three of the nine symptoms—which included nausea, dry mouth, and anorexia—were significantly decreased.

The study concludes that the symptoms of the alcohol hangover are mainly due to the activation of inflammation by alcohol.

The prickly pear extract had a moderate effect on decreasing hangover symptoms evidently by inhibiting the production of inflammation.

2. Evaluation of prickly pear hepatoprotective effect on alcohol toxicity²
In another prickly pear hangover study, pre-treatment of alcohol with prickly pear juice (opuntia ficus indica) showed a decrease in liver lipid and protein oxidation, and restricted the alterations of antioxidant enzymes.²

Due to its anti-inflammatory and strong antioxidant properties, it shows that prickly pear might be effective to help prevent hangovers and protect the liver from alcohol toxicity.

What are the Benefits of Prickly Pear Cactus?

Prickly pear contains vitamins A, C, K and E along with calcium, iron, potassium and thiamin – which add up to many benefits of prickly pear cactus.

The prickly pear cactus is high in fiber and low in calories. If eating the prickly pear fruit or juice, fiber helps you feel more full while eating fewer calories – which can help keep your weight down while preventing overeating.

Prickly pear cactus also contains a variety of antioxidants that can help fight disease-causing free radicals in your body.

This superfood also serves as a prebiotic – which provides food for the good bacteria in your gut – which makes it an ideal choice if you’re interested in improving your digestive health.

Pure prickly pear cactus is delicious, nutritious and has medicinal properties. Some of the benefits include lowering cholesterol, reducing inflammation, helping with weight loss and controlling blood sugars. But it's most well known for its anti-hangover effects when consuming alcohol.

Here's a list of (opuntia ficus indica) prickly pear benefits:

  • Improve digestion and help gastrointestinal ailments
  • Antioxidants boost
  • Weight loss
  • Promote regular bowel movements
  • Adds electrolytes (like potassium)
  • Help cholesterol
  • Preventing hangover probabilities 
  • Reducing inflammation
  • Heart health
  • Blood-sugar lowering properties for diabetes
  • Increase hair and skin health
  • Protect the liver and a liver aid
  • Immune support

How to Take Prickly Pear Cactus as a Hangover Remedy?

First, you want to find a prickly pear supplement for hangovers.

This could be prickly pear cactus pills, a prickly pear drink (juice), or prickly pear hangover tablets. For example, Zaca chewables contain prickly pear extract.

How to take prickly pear cactus as a hangover remedy? Follow these simple instructions below:

1. Take the prickly pear cactus pills or tablets at least 1-2 hours before drinking alcohol.

2. If you've drank a lot of alcohol or don't feel great, take more prickly pear cactus pills or tablets before bed along with plenty of water to assure your hydrating.

If you live in an area where prickly pear cactus or nopal cactus are native plants, you can just go out into the desert and pick some prickly pear fruits (called tunas) or pads (called nopales).

The fruit is edible and sweet as it ripens; the juice can also be extracted from it. These fruits can make juices, jellies and smoothies.

Although, the pads in addition supposedly carry even more medicinal properties.

In conclusion, if you are looking for a natural way to prevent your hangover, try prickly pear cactus. It is a morning miracle for many people.

Want to buy a high quality prickly pear (opuntia ficus indica) supplement? Try our prickly pear infused chewable tablets!







1. Effect of Opuntia ficus indica on symptoms of the alcohol hangover
2. Evaluation of Opuntia ficus indica f. inermis fruit juice hepatoprotective effect upon ethanol toxicity
3. Natural Products for the Prevention and Treatment of Hangover and Alcohol Use Disorder
4. Prickly Pear: Nutrition, Benefits, Recipes, and More
5. The Amazing Cacti: 7 Health Benefits of Prickly Pears