20 | SEP | 2019
5 health benefits of pulque
Pulque has made a comeback in recent years – Photo: File photo/EL UNIVERSAL

5 health benefits of pulque

Mexico City
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Pulque is a traditional Mexican beverage rich in nutrients

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Considered as the elixir of the gods during pre-Colonial times, for years pulque has been recognized as a drink rich in nutrients and with health benefits. Until some years ago, pulque had a bad reputation as a peasant’s drink, but today its popularity has risen once again.

Before the Spanish Colonization, pulque was offered in religious ceremonies to gods and victorious warriors. During that time, it was a beverage exclusive to certain sectors of the population, so its use was limited and almost forbidden.


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During Mexico’s Independence and until the mid 20th Century, pulque was the favorite drink of less privileged sectors and farmers. Hence, since the Mexican Revolution in 1910 and in the following decades, shops that sold different kinds of pulque were established.

Here are some of the benefits of drinking pulque.


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1. It controls diarrhea
In ancient times, pulque was considered a substance with many benefits. Nowadays, in some places of the country, pulque is still used to control diarrhea.

2. It prevents gastrointestinal diseases
Pulque has probiotic bacterias that can prevent gastrointestinal diseases, such as inflammation of the colon, according to Martha Gil Gómez, professor at the Chemistry Faculty of the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) who performed a study on this beverage along with José Adelfo Escalante Lozada.


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3. It stimulates the immune system
Pulque also helps to stimulate the immune system. The expert asserts that it is a good idea “to take advantage of these nutritional qualities and the probiotic bacteria it contains.” However, its frequent consumption must be avoided because of the alcohol content.

4. It helps lower cholesterol
A team of researchers from the National Polytechnic Institute (IPN) discovered that the ancient elixir helps reduce cholesterol, for it contains an enzyme called bile salt hydrolase. Pulque also has minerals and amino acids, as well as vitamins C and B.


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5. Food supplement
Pulque is a food supplement because of its content of vitamin B. In some indigenous communities in Mexico, children drink pulque three times a day. It provides between 2.2% and 12.4% of their daily calorie ingestion and between 0.6% and 3.2% of the protein they need.


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