Okra is Not Just food, but Best Medicine Ever. As they say, let thy food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food. This is simply a way of emphasizing the importance of nutrition to prevent or cure disease. Similarly, we can apply this phrase to okra. There’s no way we will mention flowers and Okra will be exempted. Why? Because Okra is a part of a flowering species known as edible seed pods. It is cultivated in warm and tropical climates, such as those in Africa and South Asia. It’s biologically classified as a fruit; okra is generally utilized like a vegetable in cooking. Technically, we can say Okra is a fruit, but is eaten as a vegetable. However, it can be considered as a vegetable in terms of culinary uses and also used as culinary food. From a botanical perspective, an edible plant is considered a fruit if it has seeds, whereas if it’s seedless, such as roots, leaves and stems, it is considered a vegetable. Okra is known by many names around the world. England/Africa call it okra, okro, lady’s finger, U.S.- gumbo, Spain- guino-gombo, Portugal- guibeiro, Malaysia- Kacang bendi, and India- bhindi, gombo, and bendakaya. The fact that it even has that many names prove its global popularity and widespread cultivation. Many people do not know how nutritious this type of food is, but this article will detail all you need to know about the “Magic Okra.”
Okra is a nutritious food with many health benefits. It strengthens our immunity against conditions like diabetes, high cholesterol, Alzheimer’s, liver disease, breast cancer, and asthma. Being a plant rich in vitamins A, C, and K, it helps fortify bones while also improving your eyesight. Being a green veggie, it is easy to wrap your head around the fact that okra is “all healthy.” This is the most interesting part when it comes to the benefits of okra. Okra is another reputed vegetable of love. Rich in magnesium, it is a natural relaxant. It’s also full of iron, folate, zinc, and vitamin B, all nutrients that keep your sex organs healthy and happy. It’s low in calories and has a high dietary fiber content and antioxidants. Popular forms of okra for medicinal purposes include okra water, okra peels, and powdered seeds. Let us examine the health benefits of this nutritious food.
Health Benefits of Okra
Rich in nutrients: Okra is rich in many nutrients and particularly high in vitamins A, C and K and other minerals like, iron, folate, zinc, This fruit is unique, as it provides protein, a nutrient that many other fruits and vegetables lack.
Antioxidant: Okra is rich in antioxidants that may reduce your risk of serious diseases, prevents inflammation, and contributes to overall health. Most notably, it contains polyphenols that may contribute to heart and brain health. Okras are responsible for fending off some of the most harmful molecules known as free radicals. By eating okra, you can improve your heart health and lower your risk of experiencing oxidative damage and blood clots; these are the things you can get when you consume okra on a regular basis.
Healthy sex Organ: Okra keeps your sex organs healthy and happy
Heart Health: Animal research suggests that okra may bind to cholesterol in your gut and lower blood cholesterol levels. It’s also rich in polyphenols, which fight harmful inflammation and protect your heart.
Healthy blood sugar: Eating okra has been linked to blood sugar control. Yet, some research suggests that it may interfere with common diabetes medications.
Diabetes: Okra has been suggested to help manage blood sugar in cases of type 1, type 2. and gestational diabetes. The study shows that okra water improved the blood sugar levels of pregnant rats that had gestational diabetes. Basically, Okra’s peel and seed can lower blood glucose levels, making them useful in managing diabetes mellitus.
Cholesterol: Okra promotes cholesterol degradation and inhibits the production of fat in the body. It, thus, decreases total cholesterol and triglyceride and enhances excretion of bile acids (made from cholesterol) in the feces. By regulating cholesterol levels in the blood, okra can prevent clogging of arteries – protecting us from heart diseases like atherosclerosis.
Healthy Pregnancy & Breastfeeding: Eating okra may help pregnant women meet their daily folate needs. Folate is important for preventing neural tube defects. It prevents fetal problems during pregnancy. Low folate levels can lead to pregnancy loss and problems for the child, including conditions such as spina bifida.
Anticancer properties: Okra contains a protein called lectin, which is being studied for its role in cancer prevention and treatment. Kills Breast Cancer Cells Incorporating okra in your diet may help reduce this statistic drastically.
Fortifies Bones and Prevents Excessive Bleeding: vitamin K in the okra helps strengthen bones and promotes clotting of blood. Okra, thus, helps prevent osteoporosis, fractures, and excessive bleeding (due to injury or bleeding disorders).
Boosts Immunity and Improves Eyesight: The Vitamin A in okra encourages the production of white blood cells, key players in your immune system. While infections and diseases do their rounds in the general population, okra will equip your body well enough to resist. Vitamin A also supports eye health. If you have weak eyesight or if you come from a family with a history of weak eyesight, it makes sense for you to consume okra regularly.
Prevents Gastritis: H. pyloribacteria infect the stomach lining and causes inflammation called gastritis. Okra juice contains anti-adhesive compounds that bind to the surface of free-floating bacteria in the gut. This unanticipated binding blocks sites of the bacteria responsible for docking the stomach lining. In effect, okra juice prevents H. Pylori infections and gastritis.
Prevents Liver Disease: Your liver is your body’s prime detox organ. Okra can help ensure it is protected from disease. Oral pre-administration of okra extracts reduces the effects of damaging free radicals that cause liver disease.
Staves Off Neurodegenerative Disorders: Okra may help reduce the risks of Alzheimer’s in individuals who are genetically predisposed to it.17 It may also help prevent other neurodegenerative diseases related to oxidative stress.
On the other hand, eating too much okra can adversely affect some people.
Gastrointestinal problems: Okra contains fructans, which is a type of carbohydrate. Fructans can cause diarrhea, gas, cramping, and bloating in people with existing bowel problems. Kidney stones: Okra is high in oxalates.
Kidney stones: Okra is high in oxalates. High oxalate foods, such as okra and spinach, may increase the risk of kidney stones in people who have had them previously.
Inflammation: Okra contains solanine, which is a toxic compound that may trigger joint pain, arthritis, and prolonged inflammation in some people. Potatoes, tomatoes, eggplant, and blueberries also contain solanine. So eat in moderation.Blood clotting: Vitamin K helps the blood clot, and okra’s high vitamin K content may affect those who use blood-thinning drugs, such as warfarin or Coumadin. Blood thinners help prevent the formation of blood clots that can lead to a stroke or heart attack.
Okra, like other vegetables, is a healthful addition to the diet. As with any food or nutrient, it is best to eat it in moderation and as part of a varied, balanced diet. However, some people should talk to their doctors before consuming okra as it may cause adverse effects.