Okro is a staple food, especially in the south-western part of Nigeria. This amazing vegetable is termed as “one of the best medicinal vegetables”. It is of very high medicinal and nutritional values, with benefits that most people didn’t even know it had.It can be eaten raw, cooked, or steamed depending on your preference.
Rich Source of Fibre
Okra’s rich fiber content helps in better digestion, and regularization of bowels. It also reduces gastrointestinal issues such as bloating, cramping, constipation, and excess gas.The soluble fiber, Pectin, swells up in the intestine and helps in easier elimination of the wastes from the intestine. Mucilaginous fiber found in okra can help move food through your digestive tract by adding bulk.
Helps in Diabetes
The presence of Eugenol, a type of fibre in Okro helps fight against diabetes. The also helps stabilize blood sugar level by delaying sugar absorption from the intestines with his insulin-like properties.
For Strong Bones: Okro contains vitamin K,which is a co-factor in the vital blood-clotting process and along with Folic Acid, restores bone density, strengthens bones and prevents osteoporosis.
Immunity Booster: The high antioxidants and vitamin C content make Okro a good immune booster.The high Vitamin C content in okro helps fight cold and cough by encouraging a healthy immune system.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.
Helps During Pregnancy
The high amount of folic acid contained in okro is beneficial for the foetus during pregnancy. Folic acid is an essential nutrient which improves the development of the fetus brain. The high amount of folic acid in okra plays an important role, not only in conceiving but also in fetus brain development. It also helps in prevention of miscarriages, formation of the fetal neural tube, and preventing any defects in the tube.
Vitamin A and beta carotene found in okro are essential nutrients for maintaining good eyesight.Okro also contains xanthin and lutein, all antioxidant properties, preventing eye problems like cataract and glaucoma. Vitamin A promotes good eye health.
Okro contains iron, folic acid and vitamin K.Vitamin K helps in blood coagulation.The iron content of okra forms haemoglobin in the blood, red blood cell production and overall prevents anaemia.
Promotes Heart health
Okro is a good source of both vitamins,minerals,and potassium. Potassium is necessary to maintain proper fluid balance in the body, because it balances sodium.It also helps to relax the blood vessels and arteries, which therefore reduces blood pressure and lessens the strain on the cardiovascular system. The soluble fibre in okra helps to lower serum cholesterol and thus reduces the risk of heart disease.
Okro contains fiber and antioxidants like vitamin C and vitamin A. Fiber aids toxic waste cleansing.Vitamin C aids in repairing body tissues, preventing skin pigmentation, reducing acne, psoriasis and other skin conditions.Vitamin A helps to protect skin health, by promoting quicker healing, reducing the appearance of scars and pimples, and eliminating wrinkles. The antioxidants in okro are able to neutralize the free radicals which may have damaged those skin cells.
Promotes Healthy Hair
The mucilage in okro imparts bounce to curly and lifeless hair. Okro benefits hair in different ways and acts as a great hair conditioner, scalp moisturizer for dry and itchy scalp, fights dandruff and lice.You can make a hair rinse by cutting some okro in water,put on fire till it comes to boil, squeeze in half a lemon and let it cool. use this to rinse your hair.This rinse helps to give your hair bounce and sheen.
There you have it, 10 amazing health benefits of Okro. All of this got me craving for a steaming bowl of Eba and Okro soup. Yummy!