Cactus: Ancient Sustainable Method to Purify Water

Categories: Green

Over 200 years ago it is known that indigenous communities in Mexico have used the cactus knows as "Nopal" (Opuntia ficus-indica) to purify the water they drink. Scientific studies have shown that the resin or goo from the cactus is a very efficient and natural way to purify the toxins in water.

Due to the need of finding practical methods to purify water, and considering the majority of mechanisms used nowdays are complex in its use and maintenance . Researchers at the University of South Florida in Tampa, after many tests with water contaminated with the bacteria Bacillus Cereus; came to the conclusion that after filtering this water with the syrup of the cactus, it eliminated 98% of the bacteria.

Norma Alcantar, who was responsible for the investigation confirms that any person can boil a piece of cactus to extract the syrup to use it as a filtering mechanism afterwards. The wide availability of cactus, its accesibility and cultural acceptance, make it a very viable and atractive way to lean our water.


  • The preparation process is quite simple.
  • Cut or buy a piece of Opuntia ficus-indica.
  • Slice it into pieces and boil it in water
  • With a spoon after it boils, collect and separate the gooey syrup from the cactus
  • Pour it in a container
  • Ad a liter of water in the same container and wait until the sediments are filtered and collect at the bottom, neutralizing the bacteria.

We hope you enjoyed this article.

via Ecocosas

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