Okra is a flowering plant that is known in many parts of the world as Lady’s Finger. It has become very popular as a natural medicine as a result of its seed pods. Frequently used in Caribbean and Chinese dishes, okra is a versatile food ingredient. It can be used in soups, side dishes and as a pickle.
Okra is fast becoming a popular health food. It has a number of beneficial qualities that can help improve your health. A lot of people have heard that okra is great, but they don’t really know the details.
12 Amazing Health Benefits of Okra
The presence of Eugenol in Okra helps fight against diabetes. The fibre also helps stabilize blood sugar level by delaying sugar absorption from the intestines.
The high Vitamin C content in okro helps fight cold and cough by encouraging a healthy immune system. The Vitamin C and many essential minerals like magnesium, manganese, calcium and iron in okra also fight against harmful free radicals and therefore promote an overall healthy immune system.
Okra is one of the best vegetable sources of dietary fibre essential for the digestive system. Dietary fibres in okra help prevent and relieve constipation. The soluble fibre in okra absorbs water and adds bulk to the stool thus preventing constipation.
Okra is rich in vitamin K. Vitamin K improves calcium absorption, reduces urinary excretion of calcium, and acts as a modifier of bone matrix proteins and fight osteoporosis.
Okra is an excellent source for beta-carotene, xanthein, and lutein. These antioxidants seek and neutralize harmful biological waste that can disrupt cellular metabolism, increase degradation of cells in the body, and impair vision. Antioxidants can protect your eyesight from macular degeneration and cataracts.
Okra itself contains no cholesterol and very little fat. This makes it an excellent food to replace high cholesterol fatty foods, such as rich desserts and fatty meats, with.
It also contains high amounts of pectin, which helps decrease blood cholesterol levels by interfering with bile absorption in the intestines and forcing the liver to use circulating cholesterol to make more bile.
It is low in calories. A one and a half cup serving of okra contains just 18 calories. As mentioned, it is also a good source of antioxidant vitamins A and C, as well as folate. All of these factors, combined with the high fiber content, make it a great vegetable for weight loss.
Good for asthma, it contains vitamin C which is an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory, curtailing the development of asthma symptoms.
Used for healing ulcers and to keep joints limber. It helps to neutralize acids, being very alkaline, and provides a temporary protective coating for the digestive tract.
The superior fiber found in okra helps to stabilize the blood sugar by curbing the rate at which sugar is absorbed from within the intestinal tract.
One study published in the October 2005 Jilin Medical Journal found that regular consumption of okra can help prevent kidney disease. In the study, “those who ate okra daily reduced clinical signs of kidney damage more than those that simply ate a diabetic diet.” This also ties in with diabetes, as nearly 50% of kidney disease cases are caused by diabetes.
Vitamin C helps keep the skin looking young and vibrant. The vitamin aids in the growth and repair of bodily tissues, which affects collagen formation and skin pigmentation, and helps to rejuvenate damaged skin. Okra is full of vitamin C. Topical tip: Boil a handful of okra until soft. After letting it cool, mash it, and apply it to your face. After 5 minutes, your skin should feel smooth and rejuvenated.