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Agave is a plant discovered in parts of the us, as well as mexico, central and south america, the mediterranean, and india. The leaves and roots of agave are utilized to make medicine.

Agave has actually been taken by mouth for constipation, cancer, male-pattern baldness, and many other conditions, however there is no good scientific evidence to support these uses. Agave can cause severe irritation and allergic reactions when applied to the skin. [2]

The origins of agave

” agavos” is the greek word from which agave is derived. It equates to remarkable. Various theories attach agave to the brand-new world. Nevertheless, the most popular theory is that the spanish were the very first to bring it with them.

However, long before the spanish people made their way to mexico, it was currently considered a sacred plant by the nahuatl. The agave plant was an essential part of the faith of the mexican individuals. The aztec goddess, mayheul, is the one that represented the agave as a symbol of health, fertility, long life, and dancing.

The main inhabitants of west mexico, the nahuatl, worshipped the agave plant because it represented the power of the goddess mayheul. Greek mythology likewise tells us that agave was the goddess of desire.

The exploration of agave

Naturally, when this plant was discovered, people began experimenting with it. A thousand years earlier, pulque was the first liquor made from the agave plant. It was a fermented drink and milky in texture. At that time, many individuals utilized the pulque in their religious ceremonies.

As the spanish settlers started exploring the agave plant more, they used the pulque to make tequila and mezcal. However, if we take a look at the aztecs, they used the agave for many things. They used it in the production of vinegar, syrup, white wine, and sugar.

When the tehuacan caverns were being checked out, there were remains of roasted agaves all over. When scientists analyzed it, they discovered that the agaves gone back to 6,500 b.c. And they were an important food source for lots of people at the time. [3]

Typically grown species

The most frequently grown types consist of agave americana, agave angustifolia, blue agave (agave tequilana) and agave attenuata.

Agave americana

One of the most familiar species is agave americana, a native of tropical america. Common names include century plant, maguey (in mexico), or american aloe (it is not, nevertheless, carefully related to the genus aloe). The name “century plant” describes the long period of time the plant takes to flower, although the number of years before flowering takes place depends upon the vitality of the individual, the richness of the soil and the climate; during these years the plant is saving in its fleshy leaves the nourishment required for the effort of flowering.

Agave americana, century plant, was introduced into europe about the middle of the 16th century and is now extensively cultivated for its good-looking appearance; in the variegated forms the leaf has a white or yellow minimal or central stripe from base to peak. As the leaves unfold from the center of the rosette the impression of the marginal spines is very noticeable on the still set up more youthful leaves. The tequ plants are generally grown in tubs and put out in the summertime, but in the winter season require defense from frost. They develop very slowly and pass away after flowering, however are quickly propagated by the offsets from the base of the stem.

Agave attenuata

  1. Attenuata hails main mexico and is uncommon in its natural habitat. Unlike many species of agave, a. Attenuata has a curved flower spike from which it obtains one of its many typical names – the foxtail agave.
  2. Attenuata is likewise frequently grown as a garden plant. Unlike numerous agaves, a. Attenuata has no teeth or terminal spinal columns making it an ideal plant for locations adjacent to footpaths. Like all agaves, a. Attenuata is a succulent and needs little water or upkeep when developed. [4]

Agave ranges

Following are some of the agave ranges and it includes:.

  • Agave attenuate
  • Agave parviflora
  • Agave tequila azul
  • Agave victoria-reginae

The attenuata range likewise known as the lions tail is native to the plateau of the state of jalisco. They are an ornamental plant in gardens.

The leaves of agave parviflora include a hairy appearance because of its white, graphic markings and curling filaments. Understood by several other common names such as santa cruz striped agave, little flower century plant, and small-flower agave, the flowers of are pollinated by bees such as bumblebees. Valued in growing, it has likewise gotten the royal horticultural society’s award of garden merit.

Agave tequilana azul this variety of agave is an important economic item of jalisco, mexico, because of its role as the base ingredient of tequila, a popular distilled drink.

Agave victoria-reginae notorious for its streaks of white on sculptured geometrical leaves, just like the attenuate variety, even the victoria reginae is used as a decorative plant. [5]


The century plant (agave americana l.) Is a perennial succulent herb, as much as 10 m tall when blooming. It is native to mexico and to the southern usa, and its has been presented in all warm locations worldwide as an ornemental. Like other agaves, agave americana has long been utilized by the populations of central and south america for a large variety of purposes, consisting of handicrafts, food, ethnomedicine and animals feeding.


Agave americana is a polymorphic types, with lots of subspecies and varieties, and it hybridates with other agave species such as agave salmania (gentry, 1982). The plant forms an enormous rosette of 20-40 succulent leaves, growing from a short and thick stem close to the ground. The rosette can be as large as 5 m in size. The leaves are 15-25 cm wide and 1-2 m long, smooth and hard, nearly rigid, with a deep gutter that typically triggers them to recurve at the idea. They have serrated edges, and straight or curved thorns, and a large, sharp apical thorn. The leaf margin is undulate with dark brown teeth that turn grey with age. The leaves of cultivated kinds are typically grey to grey-blue with horizontal stripes on the back, however there are dark green forms and variegated ones with various and inconstant colour.

Patterns (yellow or white stripes, pink edges and so on). The inflorescence is a candelabra-like panicle that can reach up to 10 meters. It has 15-35 branches with thick clusters of green-yellow flowers on the upper half to 3rd of the stalk. Agave americana is rhizomatous and freely produces basal shoots (suckers). [6]

How it works?

The primary bioactive substances in the agave plant are steroidal sapogenins (generally hecogenin and tigogenin), in addition to inulin.

Scientific research studies have actually revealed that hecogenin possesses potent gastroprotective and anti-inflammatory results.

Furthermore, hecogenin has also been revealed to act as a conciliator of atp-sensitive potassium channel (k atp channel), which is directly involved in the metabolic process of the pancreatic cells that produce insulin. While further research study is needed, this medicinal action reveals that agave genuinely possesses hypoglycemic residential or commercial properties.

On the other side, tigogenin has crucial antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory residential or commercial properties, and it is instrumental for the demulcent, anti-ulcer activities of agave leaves and juice. This saponin substance has actually also been shown to inhibit cholesterol absorption, which might be useful for improving fat metabolism.

Agave leaves contain substantial quantities of inulin, which is a non-digestible type of sugar (a fructan) with prebiotic activity. Inulin, also included in other herbs, like yacon and chicory, does not get soaked up in the blood. Rather, it remains and ferments in the lower part of the gut, where it boosts the growth of excellent germs. There is evidence that the usage of inulin may enhance glucose metabolism and body weight in addition to reduce fat mass advancement. [7]

Agave plant advantages

It’s an architectural plant

Apart from being a snazzy succulent, these 11 remarkable agave plant benefits, and utilizes, make it an extremely desirable plant.

Agave plants can be a terrific centerpiece of any outside landscape. You can easily grow them in pots and have them inside your home. These desert plants are certainly one of the very best architectural plants with the power to improve the curb appeal of any house!

It’s a low upkeep plant

Agave is a low maintenance plant, and you can even grow it indoors near a window that receives some sunshine. When grown outdoors, this drought-tolerant succulent does not request much water and attention.

Great for your bones

Likewise, according to a study, mice were treated with agave tequilana for 8 weeks, and it enhanced their bone health.

Recover injuries

Among the reasons agave americana is also called american aloe is due to its topical applications– one research study concluded that applying agave extract on small wounds and burns assists in recovering them. The extract was gathered from agave leaves utilizing the percolation technique.

Reduce cholesterol levels

Agave includes saponins, which assist in decreasing cholesterol levels in the body. Low cholesterol levels in the body reduce the danger of heart disease. In addition, saponins also prevent the development of malignant growths.

Agave in your kitchen area

Agave stalks and flowers are edible. You can add them to your salad or take in raw or roasted. Nevertheless, have a look at usda certified organic ranges prior to usage and make sure what you’re consuming is not treated with pesticides.

Use as a substitute for sugar and honey

You can use agave syrup as an option for regular sugar. It’s 1.5 times sweeter than table sugar. If you are a vegan, then try it in the place of honey.

Strengthen hairs

Agave can likewise be used to hydrate hair. Mix one tablespoon of agave nectar with any hair mask or include it to your conditioner. It’ll supply shine and strength to your hair and prevent hair loss and work on split ends too.

Use in preparation of alcohol

Conventional alcohols like tequila and mescal from agave tequilana, agave angustifolia, and agave salmiana. The sweet juice from the flower stalk is likewise utilized to make pulque, which is an alcoholic beverage too.

A multipurpose plant

The leaves of agave americana and agave sislana are used in making paper and weaving mats. You can also use the sharp tip of agave americana as a needle.

Apart from this, you can likewise attempt agave for the preparation of soap. The compound in the agave plant, referred to as saponins, functions as a cleaner. It creates lather in the water– just cut leaves or roots and boil them for saponin instilled water.

Revitalizes your skin

The agave nectar contains glycolic acid and needed antioxidants. It absorbs in the skin rapidly and makes it look more youthful and less oily. It also works on controlling acne and minimizes the inflammation of the skin also. [8]

Agave nectar nutrition realities

The following nutrition truths are provided by the usda for 1 teaspoon (6.9 g) of agave syrup.

  • Calories: 21
  • Fat: 0g
  • Sodium: 0.3 g
  • Carbohydrates: 5.3 g
  • Fiber: 0g
  • Sugars: 4.7 g
  • Protein: 0g


A teaspoon of agave nectar has about 5 grams of carbs and a total of 20 calories. That is similar with table sugar, corn syrup, molasses, or sugar in any other guise.

Agave nectar is mostly fructose: fructose has a lower glycemic index than glucose, but taking in large amounts of fructose can have negative effects, as it can increase triglycerides. Triglycerides are a.

Type of fat in the blood. Raised triglyceride levels can cause hardening of the arteries (atherosclerosis) and high levels are linked to obesity, diabetes, and heart disease.

Unlike glucose, fructose is practically entirely metabolized in the liver in a procedure called fructolysis. During fructolysis, fructose is converted by the liver into:.

  • Glucose, to be utilized for energy (about half of fructose ends up being glucose)
  • Lactic acid, also for energy (about 25%)
  • Glycogen, the stored form of glucose (15% to 20%)
  • Triglycerides, a type of fat associated with an increased danger of diabetes, metabolic syndrome, and heart disease3 (5% to 10%)


Agave nectar includes only a trace quantity of fat, but a part of the fructose it consists of is converted into triglycerides. Using big quantities of any calorie sweetener, such as agave nectar is not recommended, especially if you have pre-existing cardiovascular condition, metabolic syndrome, or insulin resistance.

In addition, sugarcoated provide additional calories. These can cause weight gain, which is an independent risk aspect for diabetes and heart disease.


Agave nectar has a minimal quantity of protein (less than 0.01 grams).

Minerals and vitamins

As a plant-based product, agave syrup does contain percentages of some vitamins (such as vitamin c and a number of b vitamins) and minerals (consisting of potassium, calcium, and selenium). However the serving size is so small that the nectar provides little gain from these micronutrients. [9]

Medical use of agave

The sap of agaves has long been utilized in central america as a binding representative for numerous powders used as poultices on injuries. The sap can likewise be taken internally in the treatment of diarrhoea, dysentery etc. The sap is antibacterial, diaphoretic, diuretic and laxative. An infusion of the chopped leaf is purgative and the juice of the leaves is applied to bruises. The plant is utilized internally in the treatment of indigestion, flatulence, irregularity, jaundice and dysentery. The sap has disinfectant homes and can be taken internally to inspect the growth of putrefactive germs in the stomach and intestines. Water in which agave fiber has actually been soaked for a day can be used as a scalp disinfectant and tonic in cases of falling hair. Steroid drug precursors are acquired from the leaves. A gum from the root and leaf is used in the treatment of toothache. The root is diaphoretic and diuretic. It is used in the treatment of syphilis. All parts of the plant can be collected for use as needed, they can also be dried for later use. The dried leaves and roots save well.

Other uses of the herb

The plant includes saponins. An extract of the leaves is used as a soap. The roots are used according to another report. It is most likely that the root is the best source of the saponins that are used to make a soap. Chop up the leaves or the roots into little pieces and then simmer them in water to extract the saponins. Do not over boil or you will start to break down the saponins. There is a report that the plant has insecticidal properties, but further details are not offered. A very strong fiber obtained from the leaves is used for making rope, coarse fabrics and so on. A paper can also be made from the leaves. The thorns on the leaves are utilized as pins and needles. The dried blooming stems are utilized as a water resistant thatch and as a razor strop. The plants are used in land-reclamation plans in arid areas of the world. [10]

How to plant agave plants outdoors?

Spring or early fall are the very best times to plant agaves outdoors. Follow these actions to include agave to your garden.

  • Make space in your garden. Dig a hole that is around twice as broad as the plant’s original container. The hole should not be deeper than the container since these succulent plants typically have shallow root systems.
  • Plant in well-draining cactus soil. Put a layer of cactus soil into the bottom of the hole. Once gotten rid of from its container, gently loosen the brand-new plant’s root system before decreasing it into the hole. Complete the sides with more cactus soil.
  • Water the agave plant to stimulate the roots. When the plant is in place, gently water the roots, and continue to water the plant around every 5 days for the first month.

How to care for your agave plant

Garden enthusiasts prefer agave plants for their ease of care. In the proper environment, your agave plant will require really little upkeep as it mature.

  1. Plant or location your agave in a warm location. Agave plants are intolerant to frost and require an environment with low humidity. If the air is too damp, agave plants are likely to experience crown rot and die. Typically, agave plants can not survive any farther north than usda hardiness zone 9.
  2. Mix your potting soil with coarse sand. Plant your agave in well-draining soil. Add coarse sand to enhance drainage and safeguard your plant from root rot. Do not fertilize your agave plant– it can cause early flowering, which will trigger your agave to perish.
  3. Offer sufficient light for your agave plant. While a lot of agave plants will grow in light shade, these plants typically do best in an area that gets complete sun.
  4. Water your agave plant moderately. When developing a new agave in your garden or pot, it is essential to water it roughly every five days for the very first month. As it develops, your outside agave will only need watering if its environment goes through an extended drought duration. Water indoor agaves when the soil is entirely dry.
  5. Protect your agave plant from insects. The agave snout weevil is understood to burrow into the center of agave plants to lay eggs. Get rid of impacted agave plants to prevent these bugs from infecting other agave plants in your garden. [11]

Benefits of agave

That being stated, there are numerous advantages of agave, particularly when utilized as a natural sweetener alternative. Here are a few of our favorites:.

Agave consists of phytonutrients

The juice of an agave plant contains phytonutrients that might have an antioxidant impact. Though these nutrients are found in small amounts, they exist in agave making a much healthier option to table sugar.

Agave is truly sweet

If you are a fan of sweets, then you likely use your reasonable share of sweeteners. While adding sweetener to your early morning coffee, day-to-day shakes and even oatmeal might not look like much, the calories and hazardous results of table sugar can accumulate quickly. Since agave syrup is nearly two times as sweet as sugar, you can use much less of it to attain the exact same great sweetness you long for in your drinks and food. Plus, by utilizing less sugar, you’ll also take in less calories and carbs.

Agave is allergy-friendly

If you suffer from plant-based allergies, then you’re in luck. Agave is a low-allergy food, and very few individuals ever experience a reaction when consuming agave. Because of this, agave syrup is an excellent sweetener to serve when developing meals for those who suffer from food allergic reactions, such as peanut allergic reaction or gluten intolerance. Use it as a sweetener in your favorite baked items or topping on a mouthwatering stack of gluten totally free pancakes. Agave nectar is a sweetener that almost everyone can take pleasure in.

Unlike honey, agave is vegan

Aside from being gluten free and allergic reaction friendly, agave syrup is likewise vegan! This makes it an excellent choice for those who are looking for completely plant-based options to table sugars.

Agave has an appealing taste

One of the undeniable advantages of agave nectar is its tasty taste. Unlike other natural sweeteners, agave does not have a bitter aftertaste or alter the flavor of your meal. Rather, agave has an extremely neutral taste, which makes it the perfect addition to both sweet and mouthwatering dishes. This neutrality also allows agave to work better in than more potent syrups like maple syrup or honey in particular dishes. [12]

How is the nectar made?

The sweetener commonly offered as agave nectar would be more properly labeled as agave syrup.

It has bit in common with the standard sweetener made traditionally by people in mexico.

That stated, the beginning of its production procedure is the same. The plant is first cut and pressed to extract the sweet sap.

While this sap is high in sugar, it also contains healthy fiber like fructans, which are linked to useful results on metabolism and insulin.

However, when processed into a syrup, the fructans are extracted and broken down into fructose by exposing the sap to heat and/or enzymes. This procedure– which resembles how other unhealthy sweeteners like high fructose corn syrup are made– damages all of the health-promoting residential or commercial properties of the agave plant.


The agave sweetener offered today is made by treating agave sugars with heat and enzymes, which damages all of its potentially beneficial health effects. Completion product is a highly improved, unhealthy syrup. [13]

Ways to use it?

  • Agave nectar liquifies rapidly, so is a great sweetener for cold beverages, such as iced tea or cocktails.
  • Use as a sweetener in place of sugar or honey in hot drinks, baking or other cooking.
  • Usage dark agave nectar straight out of the bottle as a topping for pancakes and french toast.

Just how much to utilize?

  • Agave is more calorie thick than sugar however about 40% sweeter, so start by using about half as much agave as you would sugar.
  • For one cup of white sugar, usage 1/3 to 2/3 of a cup of agave and reduce other liquids by 1/4 to 1/3 cup.
  • Change honey or maple syrup with equal quantities of agave syrup. [14]

Threat aspects of agave

Fructose comprises nearly 90% of the structure of agave syrup and in excess quantities, this may cause a couple of health complications. Some research states that excess consumption of fructose might affect your metabolic process and increase the risk of diabetes and heart diseases.

Another study also recommends that prolonged usage of fructose might increase ldl cholesterol levels that are linked to an increased danger of heart diseases.

Having learned the potential benefits and dangers of agave syrup, let us look at how this syrup is made and compares against honey in regards to nutrition and benefits. [15]

10 agave realities you didn’t know

Agave syrup is a popular natural sweetener with everyone from commercial food manufacturers to mamas looking for sugar alternatives.

Many individuals know agave syrup as the dash of sweet taste in their morning coffee or their reliable sugar alternative to baked products or other recipes. However fewer individuals understand how agave is grown or what its specific health advantages are. So let’s get into it! Here are some agave facts you might not know.

One sweet succulent.

Easter lilies and agave syrup? The relationship is closer than you believe! Lots of people assume the agave plant is a kind of cactus, however it’s really a succulent that belongs to the lily household.

Safety in the sky.

Agave plants are shaped like sea urchins, with numerous soft spinal columns radiating out from a solid center. But when they flower, they send a long stalk directly, with yellow flowers that bloom on the end of it. Sending its most vulnerable parts into the air (approximately 20 feet!) Protects the agave plants by keeping its reproductive parts up and out of the way of animals that might want to take a bite out of it.

An unusual pollinator.

The mexican long-nosed bat is the agave plant’s greatest pollinator. The bats utilize their long muzzles to eat the agave’s nectar like a hummingbird finishes with smaller sized flowers. When they flit between plants, they transfer pollen that gathers on their fur as they feed.

Long-term payoff.

In order to achieve the high fructose levels that premium agave syrup needs, the agave plants need to grow unblemished for six to 8 years. Once they’ve reached maturity, they can be gathered for processing.

A special harvest.

During gathering, an extremely knowledgeable mexican expert called a jimador strips the agave leaves off the plant using a coa, a long tool with a really sharp round knife at the end.

Quick and efficient.

A professional jimador can process approximately 100 pinãs a day.

Getting to the heart of it.

The pinã, or heart, of the agave plant weighs about one hundred pounds upon harvest. This big part of the plant is collected by hand when a jimador has actually removed the leaves.

Natural and sustainable.

Agave is non-gmo and is cultivated by replanting small suckers, or tendrils, that the agave plant produces around its 2nd year of growth. These are harvested and re-planted utilizing sustainable farming techniques.

Better results on your body and the earth.

Agave is low on the glycemic index, which suggests it doesn’t raise blood glucose levels as drastically as high fructose corn syrup or walking cane sugar. It’s grown naturally and is likewise gluten-free and vegan!

A sweeter alternative.

Agave is 1.5 times sweeter than sugar. So, while it has the same caloric value as sugar, you can utilize less and conserve calories. Long-term, this home can aid with weight control.

Is agave the organic sweetener you’ve been looking for? Our premium natural blue agave syrup is fair trade accredited and produced in mexico in our farmer-owned factory.

When you buy from the tierra group, you’re supporting regional farmers. Their love for the land and its people is the driving inspiration behind our high-quality agave syrup and agave inulin items. Discover them on amazon, or contact us for personal label or bulk purchases. [16]


The appropriate dose of agave depends on numerous factors such as the user’s age, health, and numerous other conditions. At this time there is insufficient clinical info to determine a suitable range of dosages for agave. Remember that natural items are not constantly necessarily safe and does can be essential. Make certain to follow pertinent directions on item labels and consult your pharmacist or doctor or other health care specialist before using.

Unique safety measures and warnings

Pregnancy or breast-feeding: taking agave by mouth during pregnancy is likely risky. There is some evidence that agave might promote the uterus and cause contractions. Also, pulque, an agave drink, is unsafe to use during pregnancy since it consists of alcohol. Drinking pulque during pregnancy has actually been linked with smaller infant size and minimized mental performance during the first 6 months of life.

Agave is possibly hazardous to utilize while breast-feeding. Consuming pulque while breast-feeding has actually been related to slower weight gain and minimized growth by 5 years of age. [17]


Agave can help avoid and minimize the effects of heart disease and diabetes, and keep your blood sugar under control. However the natural sweetener isn’t a healthy choice, although it has fewer side effects than conventional sugar. The high fructose levels in agave might be harmful to your liver’s health and have an influence on your weight. [18]


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