ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Is Okra a Superfood?

Updated on December 18, 2018
srirad0675 profile image

Srikanth is passionate about helping people stay healthy. He believes that consuming nutritious food is the key to a long and healthy life.

Okra Is Healthy and Tasty

Ancient fruits and vegetables found in ancient religious and biblical texts have a special role to play in our diet. Most of them have special medicinal value and have proved their worth over millennia.

Okra Has Medicinal Value

Okra is one such vegetable. In fact okra is a perennial flowering plant that is grown throughout tropical, subtropical and warm regions. The pod is the edible part of the plant. Also known as ladies' finger, bhindi, okro, ochro, gumbo, bamia pod, this warm-season vegetable was a favorite food of Cleopatra.

Do you like okra?

See results

Okra Contains Plenty of Valuable Nutrients

Source

Okra Is a Nutritional Powerhouse

Okra (Abelmoschus esculentus) contains potassium, fibre, magnesium, folate, vitamin C and many other essential nutrients that keep you strong and healthy.

Okra Nutrition

Nutrient
In Half Cup Of Sliced, Cooked Okra
Calories
25 kcal
Protein
1.5 g
Carbohydrates
5.8 g
Folic acid
37 mg
Vitamin C
13 mg
Magnesium
46 mg
Fiber
2 g
Potassium
257 mg

Make Okra a Common Ingredient in Your Soups and Stews

Source

Okra Health Benefits

Here are okra benefits.

Good For the Brain

Okra keeps brain neurons healthy. Many experts are of the opinion that it is an excellent brain food. “Okra is popularly consumed by young students in the Middle East, Far East and South East Asia, where people believe that okra is good for brain function,” says Kantha Shelke, a food scientist at Corvus Blue LLC. Shelke is also the spokesperson for the Institute of Food Technologists (IFT).

Brain

Source

Keeps Digestive System Healthy

Fiber in okra promotes a healthy digestive system. It vegetable prevents constipation. This therapeutic vegetable prevents many digestion related diseases.

Okra Cures Stomach Ulcer

Some experts are of the opinion that okra is more effective against stomach ulcers than conventional medicines. It is helping many people who are dealing with pain and discomfort associated with stomach ulcer.

What Is Stomach Ulcer?

Stomach ulcer is a sore or lesion that develops on the lining of the stomach. In the stomach of a healthy person a thick layer of mucous lines the inner walls. This mucous lining protects the stomach from the strong acids, which help to break down our food during digestion.

When a stomach ulcer develops, the mucous lining becomes thin. It does not protect the stomach from strong acids, thereby damaging the wall of the stomach.

Use of NSAIDs like aspirin and Advil, presence of a bacterium called H. pylori, smoking, consumption of irritating foods like caffeine, refined and processed items, trans fats, unhealthy oils and allergens contribute to the development of stomach ulcers.

Burning stomach ulcers cause at night or a few hours after eating compel many people to seek medical attention and medicines. The usual medical treatment is acid suppressing medicines like antacids or a proton pump inhibitor.

Although these treatments may provide relief from the symptoms, they do nothing to improve the health of the stomach lining. Unfortunately they further impair digestion, which only perpetuates the problem and leads to a whole host of other health complications, which are commonly known as side effects.

Instead of attempting to reduce stomach acid secretions, we need to increase our consumption of foods that heal the lining of the stomach, while reducing our consumption of foods that damage and further aggravate the lining of the stomach.

Consume food items that have a soothing effect on the stomach; foods that repair/heal the cells and provide relief from pain and inflammation; foods such as Okra. Antioxidants, B vitamins, calcium, iron, magnesium and manganese in okra work together against stomach ulcer. Also okra is an excellent demulcent. Isn't it a good idea to cook okra fry today?

Okra is known to improve digestion because of its fibre content.... Okra also helps prevent diarrhoea, because it adds bulk to watery stool. The fibre content helps to clear out excess cholesterol in the body and controls the rate at which sugar is absorbed into the body. This is therefore helpful in reducing blood sugar levels and hence controlling diabetes.

— Fausta Akech, a nutrionist at Healthy U

Prevents Gastritis

When there is bacteria in the stomach, inflammation usually leads to gastritis. Anti-adhesive compound in okra binds to the surface of the gut, thereby blocking the bacteria from attaching to the stomach lining. A study proves this fact.

Helps in Diabetes Management

Okra is a superfood for people with or at risk of diabetes. It has a positive effect on blood sugar control. Many Vitro (laboratory) and Vivo (animal) studies have confirmed okra as a potent blood glucose-lowering (or anti-diabetic) food.

A study on rats indicates that okra suppresses insulin resistance, thereby improving blood sugar levels. Many diabetics have reported decreasing blood sugar levels after soaking cut-up okra pieces in water overnight and then drinking the juice in the morning. In Turkey roasted okra seeds have been used as a traditional diabetes medicine for centuries.

What makes okra a diabetes friendly food? Insoluble fibre in okra stabilises blood sugar by slowing the rate at which sugar is absorbed from the intestinal tract.

Research scientists investigated okra polysaccharide's effect on metabolic disorders in mice. They found that OP lowers body weight and glucose levels, improves glucose tolerance, and decreases serum total cholesterol levels.

A team of experts tested hypoglycemic effect of the extract in normal, glucose loading and alloxan-induced diabetic rats. They observed that the Ethanolic extract of fruits of okra at a dose of 500mg/kg b.w. could produce a significant fall in blood glucose levels by about 76% in diabetic rats, after five hours of treatment.

Okra contains Eugenol, a dietary fibre which helps men affected by diabetes. Eugenol normalises blood sugar level and slows down sugar absorption.

Strengthens the Immune System

Vitamin C, magnesium, manganese, iron, calcium and other nutrients, especially antioxidants in okra build a strong immune system. Vitamin C stimulates the immune system to produce more WBC, which fights pathogens in the body.

Used to Treat Asthma

Okra, which is well-known for its anti-inflammatory properties, curtails the development of asthma symptoms. It also reduces the frequency of asthma attacks.

Source

Prevents Sunstroke

Okra keeps you strong and energetic and prevents sunstroke. It also helps you recover from this heatstroke quickly.

Okra and Heart

Is okra good for the heart? Yes it is. Cholesterol enhances the risk of many heart related diseases. Fiber in okra binds to cholesterol in the body and removes the same from the body. Vitamin C and phytosterols in okra reduce the levels of "bad cholesterol".

Helps You Maintain Healthy Eyes

Beta-carotene, zeaxanthin, and lutein promote excellent eye health. Okra prevents cataracts and macular degeneration.

Source

Good For the Skin

Okra is used in treatment of various skin conditions, including dry skin, psoriasis, acne and dull skin. Anti-fungal, antibacterial, anti inflammatory and re-hydrating properties of okra make it a skin-friendly food.

Good For Babies

Okra is an excellent source of vitamins and minerals, which are necessary for babies. It facilitates smooth bowel movement in your loved one. It is an excellentcure for dysentery and diarrhea. It keeps your baby's blood healthy.

Source

Prevents Cancer

Various antioxidants in okra prevent many cancers. Lectin from okra was used in a research study to treat human breast cancer cells. The treatment decreased cancer cell growth by 63 percent and killed 72 percent of the human cancer cells.

Good For the Bones

Folate, calcium, vitamin C, magnesium, vitamin K, phosphorus and other nutrients in okra keep your bones strong and healthy. They also prevent osteoporosis.

Removes Toxins

Okra detoxifies the body; it is an excellent diuretic. It also keeps your liver clean and healthy.

Cures Anemia

Anemia is caused by hemoglobin deficiency. Vitamins A and C, and magnesium in okra juice promote the production of hemoglobin, thereby curing anemia.

If you are a vegan and looking for plant proteins, then okra is just right for you. This amazing vegetable contains amino acids like sulfur, cysteine, and tryptophan.

Keeps You Energetic

A research study suggests that antioxidant flavonoids and polyphenols in okra increase glycogen in the liver, thereby preventing fatigue.

Prevents Atherosclerosis

Okra reduces the risk of atherosclerosis by relaxing blood vessels and arteries. Potassium in okra promotes a healthy cardiovascular system.

Good for pregnant women

Essential nutrients in okra make it an ideal vegetable for pregnant women. It reduces the risk of birth defects like spina bifida. It prevents constipation, which is a common problem during pregnancy.


Cooking Okra

The easiest way to prepare okra is by steaming it, just like any other vegetable, by placing it in a steamer or in a pot of boiling water using a steaming basket.

This process takes about 5-8 minutes. Okra can also be stewed or baked alone or with other vegetables.

Summary

  • Okra is a warm season vegetable.
  • Half cup of sliced, cooked okra contains 5.8 grams of carbohydrates.
  • Okra prevents various cancers.
  • Okra keeps your bones and teeth strong.
  • Okra reduces the risk of heart disease.

I believe that the greatest gift you can give your family and the world is a healthy you.

— Joyce Meyer

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • borge_009 profile image

      borge_009 

      2 years ago from Philippines

      Hi Srikanth! I do agree with you that okra is a superfood. Okra's my favorite too. I hope you would take time to check my article on vegetable soup where okra is one of the ingredients.

      https://hubpages.com/food/2-SIMPLE-AND-SCRUMPTIOUS... :)

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)