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Science | World

Papaya leaf juice hikes platelet count, being studied as cure to dengue: Malaysia health exec

FILE PHOTO OF PAPAYA LEAVES

InterAksyon.com
The online news portal of TV5

PUTRAJAYA -- The health ministry of Malaysia is still conducting studies on the use of papaya leaf juice to cure dengue fever, said its Director-General, Datuk Dr. Noor Hisham Bin Abdullah.

He said clinical studies by the Institute of Medical Research (IMR) on the papaya leaf juice on a dengue fever patient (non-hemorrhagic dengue fever and class one dengue hemorrhagic fever) showed that the intake of 30 milliliters or two large spoonfuls of matured papaya leaf juice daily for three days raised the platelet count.

"The hike in platelet is only one of numerous processes taking place in a patient suffering from dengue fever.

"Studies are still being conducted on the use of papaya leaf juice for dengue fever. The ministry also does not provide papaya leaf juice in government hospitals," he said in a statement here.

Dr Noor Hisham said this when commenting on a statement by certain parties that the papaya leaf contained dangerous chemicals, namely, cyanogenic glycoside which could cause liver, kidney, and heart failure and, subsequently, death.

According to Dr Noor Hisham, the papaya tree is grouped under weak cyanogenesis, namely, producing a small quantity of hydrogen cyanide (there are 0.02 milligrams of cyanide in four papaya leaves and the amount goes down as a leaf increased in maturity).

He said the lowest cyanide dosage to endanger humans is one mg per kilogram of body weight.

As such, he said, a person weighing 60 kg requires 12,000 papaya leaves at one time to induce poisoning.

"IMR has conducted a safety study by using the highest dosage of 2,000 mg for every kilogram of body weight in laboratory animals.

"In the study, three intake methods were used, namely, only one dose, a dose daily for 28 days and one dose daily for 90 days. The result - no side effect to the kidney, liver, and heart.

"The result of the blood test was normal while a specific study (hepatotoxicity study) on the liver was also normal," he said.

 

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