Okra (Abelmoschus esculentus) also known as “lady’s finger,” or “bamia pod” is one of the favorite nutritious vegetables common in almost every household in Nigeria. The pods are usually gathered while they are green, tender, and at the immature stage.
Okra plant which is cultivated throughout the tropical and warm temperate regions around the world for their phytonutrients rich pods grows best in a well-drained and manure rich soil.
Here are the amazing health benefits of the Okra.
- The okra pods are among the very low-calorie vegetables. They provide just 30 calories per 100 g besides containing no saturated fats or cholesterol.
- The seeds of okra are an excellent source of first-rate vegetable protein and oils, enriched with amino acids like tryptophan, cystine and other sulfur amino acids.
- The gumbo pods are an excellent source of antioxidant vitamin, vitamin-C, providing about 36 per cent of daily recommended levels.
- The pods also contain good amounts of vitamin-K. Vitamin-K is a co-factor for blood clotting enzymes and is required for strengthening of bones.
- Okra increases sexual potency and is beneficial in treating genital disorders like syphilis, gonorrhoea, leucorrhoea, dysuria and excessive menstrual bleeding.
- The insoluble fiber found in Okra cleans out the intestinal tract, decreasing the risk of colon-rectal cancer.
- The fiber in okra aids toxic waste cleansing while the Vitamin C aids in repairing body tissues, preventing skin pigmentation, reducing acne, psoriasis and other skin conditions
- Okra contains beta-carotenes (precursor of vitamin A), xanthin and lutein, all antioxidant properties, preventing eye problems like cataract and glaucoma
- The alkaline mucilaginous content helps neutralize acids and provides a temporary protective coating for the digestive tract speeding up the healing of peptic ulcers
- Okra helps to support the structure of blood capillaries through its high content of flavonoid and vitamin C.