Carica papaya, pawpaw, or simply papaya, is a tree that originates from the American tropics. Besides being used as food, the fruit, seeds and leaves of this plant have various uses in traditional medicine.
Fruits and seeds aside, this post is all about the leaves. I’ll start with a quick rundown of the primary benefits that can be expected, then I’ll review a few of the best supplements to consider buying and trying.
Benefits of Papaya Leaves
There are many suggested health benefits of papaya leaves and the leaf extract, however, most of those claims are based on folk medicine and have very limited to no scientific evidence to support them.
The following are some of the potential benefits that have been clinically studied. It’s worth noting that most of these studies were performed on animals. Human studies are lacking and inconclusive.
- May increase platelet count in patients with dengue fever. (1)(2)(3)
- May improve immune function and reduce inflammation. (4)(5)(6)(7)
- May protect against gastric ulcer and oxidative stress. (8)
- May lower blood glucose levels. (9)
Note 1: Many users have reported noticing an increase in their platelet count after supplementing with papaya leaf, however, many others reported no positive results. In the few available clinical studies, papaya leaf has only been shown to increase platelet count in people suffering from dengue fever. It hasn’t been proven that the same effect can be achieved when there are other causes of low blood platelets.
Note 2: It has been suggested that this herb has anti-cancer properties, however, besides subjective anecdotal reports there isn’t much of a clinical evidence to support this claim.
Best Brands of Papaya Leaf Supplements
While many health brands offer papaya enzyme products for digestion support, not many sell pure leaf powder or extracts, but among the few that do, the following three suppliers come out on top:
Herbal Goodness is a small company located in McKinney, Texas that manufactures several organic superfood supplements. They are particularly known for their papaya and graviola (soursop) products.
This brand offers a good selection of papaya formulations, including leaf and seed extracts in capsule, liquid, and tea bag forms.
Herbal Goodness manufacture their products in an FDA-inspected facility and they use certified organic, non-GMO plants.
You can learn more about the company and their products on their official website where you can also place an order.
Starwest Botanicals is a bulk herbs supplier based in Sacramento, California. They carry a huge selection of organic herbs in raw form as dried whole parts or ground powder.
Their papaya leaves are sourced from India and available as either power or dry leaves that can be brewed into a tea.
If you are looking for the raw stuff, Starwest Botanicals is a good place to source it from at a low price. Check it out on their website.
Herbal Terra is a Hawaii-based manufacturer of liquid herbal extracts. They have a large selection of herbal tinctures available in alcohol-based and alcohol-free solvents.
Their papaya leaf extract tincture is made from dried organic leaves sourced from India. The product is manufactured in an FDA-registered facility.
This brand is a relatively less popular one, but their products seem to be legit and they have many positive reviews. If you’re looking for the liquid extract, this one is worth a shot.
You can browse and order Herbal Terra’s products from their website. Make sure to select the “alcohol-free” option if that’s what you’d prefer.