Okra, also known as bamia or bhindi or gumbo, is a plant of the tropical and warm climates that produces edible green pods. Some may know okra as a slimy ingredient in soups and stews. But is rarely seen as medicine — which it is!
Okra can help with:
Stabilizing blood sugar levels by slowing its absorption from the intestines.
Controlling cholesterol: Okra is loaded with pectin that can help reduce high blood cholesterol simply by modifying the creation of bile within the intestines.
Preserving good vision: Okra has been connected to cataract prevention.
Healthier Pregnancies: You may want to beef up your okra intake during pregnancy. It contains a large amount of folates – just 100 grams of okra provides nearly one-fourth of the recommended daily amount! Folates (folic acid) are particularly important in the pre-conception period and during early gestation and help prevent birth defects. Foods with folate are can also help with improving lung function, something many expectant women complain of.
Preventing Cancer: Due to the abundance of antioxidants and fiber, okra is connected with okra with cancer prevention, especially of colorectal cancer.
Fighting Colds & Flu: It’s a rich source of vitamin C, which helps with the body’s immunity – okra has been linked to cough and cold prevention. Since vitamin C also act as an anti-inflammatory, okra might be good for reducing the symptoms of asthma.
Reducing Constipation: Okra contains lots of dietary fiber, which helps with acting as a natural laxative. The pods are rich in mucilage substance, a thick, gluey substance that lubricates the large intestine and this helps with elimination. Okra’s fiber also feeds the gut’s beneficial bacteria (probiotics) and helps with maintaining the pH balance of your digestive tract.
Preventing Blood Clots: Okra contains Vitamin K, which is important for bone health and plays a major role in stopping blood clots.
Healthier Hearts: The soluble fiber within okra helps naturally reduce cholesterol and, therefore, decreases the chance of cardiovascular disease, making the consumption of okra is an efficient method to manage the body’s cholesterol levels.
Okra is also praised for preventing complexion spots and pimples, and is a good source of minerals such as iron, calcium, manganese, and magnesium (find out if you are magnesium deficient).
Click here for Okra Recipes: cook until crispy, not slimy.