Okra is an amazing plant that is also known as Lady Finger. It belongs to the Moringa plant family and grows in warm climates such as South America, Africa, and Asia. Its consumption has been since ancient times, and it is loved in many parts of the world for its amazing health benefits. Okra has been used to treat gastrointestinal problems, reduce cholesterol levels, boost immunity, and lower blood pressure.
Below are some Amazing Health Benefits of Okra you need to know about.
Okra is known to be a good source of vitamin C, which has been shown to reduce inflammation. Vitamin C is a strong antioxidant that protects cells from damage caused by free radicals in the body. Vitamin C also helps promote healthy skin, teeth, and gums! Okra can help relieve pain due to cramps because of the presence of magnesium and calcium in its nutritional composition.
It is high in antioxidants (vitamins A, B1, B2, and B3) which are essential for health and vitality. Okra has alpha-linoleic acid in its composition and this promotes cardiovascular health by reducing risk factors such as cholesterol levels and high blood pressure.
Great for Lowering Cholesterol
Okara which has fiber and is known for its mucilaginous texture helps lower cholesterol, prevents constipation, reduces gas, and helps with weight loss. In addition to all these benefits, okra is also a great source of protein and omega-3 fatty acids. To get the most benefit from your okra, you will need to add it to your meal regularly. You can make an okra powder by grinding the dry pulp left over after juicing raw fresh or canned okra until it resembles fine cornmeal. Add this to soups, sauces, and other dishes as you would use flour or cornstarch. There are still a lot amazing Health Benefits of Okra you need to know about, keep reading.
One major benefit of Okra that has been overlooked over time is its ability to reduce stress. When we feel stressed out and anxious, it can be hard to stay focused on achieving our tasks and goals. The good news is that the high levels of magnesium in okra can help our body release endorphins and serotonin which are natural feel-good hormones that have been shown to reduce stress levels. In addition, okra’s high fiber content helps keep our belly fuller over a long time so that cravings for snacks don’t become overwhelming.
Improves the Immune System
Okra is known to have a high vitamin C content which has been shown to improve the immune system by boosting production and regulating cells. It also provides folate, which is important for DNA synthesis and repair. It’s a good source of healthy fiber, too.
High in Folic Acid
Okra is rich in essential nutrients such as protein, fiber, and folic acid. Folic acid is a very important vitamin for pregnant women because it helps in the prevention of birth defects in the baby’s brain and spine. Okra also has a low glycemic index that can help lower blood sugar levels.
Lowers Blood Pressure
Do you know that Okra is a vegetable that can help lower blood pressure levels?
This happens because of the presence of a soluble fiber called pectin in its composition, which when consumed has been shown to lower blood pressure.
When okra is cooked, it releases even more soluble fiber than raw okra. Researchers recommend eating one serving per day to affect high blood pressure. If you will consume a good portion of fruits and vegetables, you will have significantly lower blood pressure readings.
Okra contains potassium, which can help regulate blood pressure and reduce heart disease risk factors like high cholesterol and triglycerides.
Improves Oral Health
Regular intake of Okra is one of the most effective and affordable ways to improve oral health. Its antibacterial properties help keep your teeth clean and prevent gum disease. Okra can be eaten in its raw or cooked form, simply chop it up and add some salt, pepper, and olive oil for a fresh salad dressing. If you cook with it, make sure to use less water than you would normally use when cooking vegetables so that they don’t get too soft and mushy.
Aside from oral health, okra is also known to help prevent other medical conditions. Research has shown it can reduce symptoms of gout, arthritis, and high blood pressure. It’s also known to improve heart health by lowering cholesterol levels, regulating blood flow, and preventing cardiac arrest. There are also no negative side effects of eating okra (unless you are allergic or intolerant), but some people may experience mild digestive issues if they consume too much at one time. But overall, its benefits outweigh any potential risks and make it worth introducing to your diet.
Helps Fight Cancer
This is also another amazing Health Benefits of Okra you need to know about! Okra has been shown to have some anti-cancer properties. The plant is rich in isothiocyanates, which are substances that can hinder the growth and spread of tumors. In a recent study, researchers found okra helped reduce tumor size in mice with prostate cancer. It’s worth noting that these studies were conducted on animals, not humans. More research needs to be done before we know for sure if okra can help fight cancer in people too. But if you’re looking for other ways to protect yourself from developing this disease, you may want to try other options like eating plenty of fruits and vegetables or exercising more often.
Okra contains several important phytonutrients in its composition. The most prevalent among them is quercetin, which has anti-histamine effects that make it useful in fighting allergies as well as certain types of cancers and heart disease.
Okra’s sulfur-containing nutrients have been found to have anti-inflammatory properties that may be helpful in treating arthritis symptoms.
Additionally, okra offers many other health benefits such as:
Aiding weight loss.
Aiding digestion by softening stool consistency.
Improvement of skin conditions like psoriasis and eczema with anti-inflammatory properties.
Improvement of bone density to decrease the risk of osteoporosis with calcium absorption from okra pods.
Okra has a high calcium content which helps prevent osteoporosis. In a study on postmenopausal women, those who ate okra had higher bone density than those who did not eat okra. This is because okra contains high levels of vitamin K1, which promotes the formation and retention of calcium in the bones. Plus, because its fiber can bind to some minerals and help them stay in the body longer, it can also help prevent osteoporosis by preventing deficiencies that would lead to thinning bones. Okra has phytochemical content which is also beneficial as it prevents oxidation in the body, so you’ll be more likely to have healthy blood vessels if you introduce Okra to your diet.
The consumption of Okra is very important in our diet because of its huge health benefits, easy accessibility, and sweetness from different dishes. If you desire to improve your health, then you should consider introducing this great plant to your diet.