ladies finger fresh brought from local market

Okra Benefits

The formal name for okra is Abelmoschus esculentus. It is a healthy vegetable with many health benefits. Okra is a flexible food that is full of vitamins, minerals, and fiber. It also has a unique texture and taste. This green pod vegetable has become popular because it can help with digestion, control blood sugar levels, help you lose weight, boost your immune system, and add to your overall health. This food has a reputation for being good for your health, whether you eat it in different dishes or drink it as okra water.

fresh healthy okra

Do you know okra has different names in different parts of world

Okra, a multipurpose vegetable, has many names worldwide. It’s called gumbo in the US and lady’s finger in England. Guibeiro in Portuguese and guino-gombo in Spanish. India calls it bhindi. Its Ethiopian names include Kenkase (Berta), Andeha (Gumuz), and Bamia (Oromica/Amharic). “Okra” comes from one of the Niger-Congo languages, as the Twi language calls it “nkuruma.” English adopted “okra” in the late 18th century. [1]

Okra is Rich in Nutrients

Potassium, Sodium, Magnesium, and Calcium are the most abundant elements in okra pods, which contain approximately 17 percent seeds. Additionally, the presence of Iron, Zinc, Manganese, and Nickel has been reported. [9]

100 g of Okra Pods Contains

NutrientAmount per 100g
Energy144.00 kJ (36 kcal)
Calcium (Ca)84.00mg
Phosphorus (P)90.00mg
Iron (Fe)1.20mg
Ascorbic Acid47.00mg
The table displays the composition of okra pods per 100g of digestible portion, elucidating its nutritional qualities. With a high water content and significant amounts of protein, carbohydrates, fiber, vitamins, and minerals such as calcium, phosphorus, and iron, okra is an important part of a balanced diet. [7]

100 gram of Okra leaves contains

NutrientAmount per 100g
Energy235.00 kJ (56.00 kcal)
Calcium (Ca)532.00mg
Phosphorus (P)70.00mg
Iron (Fe)0.70mg
The table outlines the composition of 100 grams of edible okra leaves. These leaves are rich in water, as well as protein, lipids, carbohydrates, fiber, and numerous vitamins and minerals. They are particularly abundant in calcium, ascorbic acid (vitamin C), and -carotene. Including okra leaves in your diet can contribute to a nutritionally balanced diet. [8]

Fresh pods are low in calories (20 per 100 g), virtually fat-free, high in fiber, and contain several beneficial nutrients, including approximately 30% of the recommended daily allowance of vitamin C (16 to 29 mg), 10 to 20% of folate (46 to 88 mg), and approximately 5% of vitamin A. [10]

According to reports, okra pods contain viscous fiber and less cholesterol than other foods.[11]

The amino acid profile of okra seed protein is similar to that of soybean protein. [5] Proteins serve an indispensable role in human nutrition. A protein’s biological value is determined by its amino acid composition, proportions, and digestibility by humans.

Okra also contains carbohydrates and vitamins. [6]

In some countries, okra is also used in traditional medicine as an antiulcerogenic, gastroprotective, and diuretic agent. [12]

self made okra water
Okra water

Okra Seeds are Source of Oil and Protein and Alternate to Caffeine-Free Coffee

Okra seeds provide protein and oil. They produce oil on a small basis. Roasted and crushed okra seeds make a caffeine-free coffee substitute. This shows that okra seeds can be utilized for more than just cooking. [2] Okra seeds have a lot of oil (20–40%) in them. [3] Okra seed oil has a lot of linoleic acid, which is an important polyunsaturated fatty acid for humans. [4]

Okra can Help to Reduce Your Weight

Foods high in fiber, such as okra, require more time to metabolize than foods low in fiber. As a result, they remain in your stomach longer, making you feel fuller for a prolonged period of time. [24] The okra fruit is composed of crude protein (23.36%) and carbohydrates (42.66%). [25]

Several factors suggest that okra may assist in weight loss. First, it is low in calories and fat, making it an ideal addition to a diet that restricts caloric. Second, okra is rich in dietary fiber, which promotes satiety and suppresses appetite, resulting in a reduced caloric intake.

In addition, okra contains numerous nutrients and antioxidants that promote overall health and well-being during weight loss. It is important to note, however, that weight loss is a complex process influenced by multiple variables, and that incorporating okra into a balanced diet and engaging in regular physical activity are essential for attaining sustainable weight loss.

The okra fruit is composed of crude protein (23.36%) and carbohydrates (42.66%).

Air fried okra Indian style

Okra is Great Food for Diabetes

Different parts of the okra plant are known for their high levels of antioxidant activity. [13]

The study [14] demonstrated that administering varying doses of okra peel and seed powder to diabetic rodents significantly increased antioxidant enzyme levels in their liver, kidney, and pancreas. In addition, it increased the levels of reduced glutathione and decreased the levels of thiobarbituric acid reactive substances (TBARS), indicating a decrease in oxidative stress. These results demonstrate the potential for okra peel and seed powder to enhance antioxidant status and reduce oxidative damage in diabetic conditions.

Rich in dietary fiber, okra regulates the absorption of sugar from the intestines and helps maintain stable blood sugar levels. Due to the presence of fiber and other nutrients, okra is advantageous for lowering blood sugar levels and managing diabetes. In addition to aiding in the maintenance of stable blood sugar levels, the fiber content slows the absorption of sugar in the intestines. In general, the high fiber content of okra contributes to its beneficial effect on blood sugar regulation. [15]

According to the results of the investigation on rats, the viscous soluble dietary fiber present in Abelmoschus esculentus L. (okra) significantly reduced glucose absorption in the intestines of fasting rats. And researcher suggested that including okra in the diet may benefit diabetic patients by assisting to control post-meal blood glucose levels. [20]

In diabetic conditions, okra seed has the ability to normalize blood glucose levels and reduce lipid profiles. [18]

Air fried okra with sesame added (okra Pickle)

Okra can be Your Best Food During Your Pregnancy

In addition to its numerous health benefits, okra is essential for expectant women due to its rich nutrient content. Folate, an essential nutrient in okra, serves a crucial role in preventing neural tube defects, making it especially important for pregnant women.

Moreover, okra has the potential to address both macronutrient and micronutrient deficiencies, providing pregnant women with vital nutrients.

In addition, okra’s high dietary fiber content helps prevent constipation by increasing peristaltic movement in the gastrointestinal tract. These findings are consistent with the findings of the study, highlighting the importance of okra consumption during pregnancy. [21]

Okra can Help Solve Digestive Problems

Okra is frequently used to treat digestive problems. Polysaccharides in immature okra pods exhibit notable anti-adhesive properties. These properties aid in reducing bacterial adhesion to stomach tissue, thereby inhibiting the proliferation of pathogenic cultures. By consuming okra, digestive issues may be alleviated, and a healthier digestive system may be promoted. [16]

Okra can Help Maintain Cholesterol Level

The ability of okra to regulate cholesterol levels in the body is well-known. Numerous serious health conditions are associated with elevated cholesterol levels, and it can be difficult to manage cholesterol through diet alone because so many foods are cholesterol rich.

However, consuming okra provides significant health benefits by effectively controlling and lowering cholesterol levels. This nutrient-dense vegetable not only aides in weight loss, but also contributes to the maintenance of a healthy, low-cholesterol body, thereby promoting overall health. [17]

In diabetic conditions, okra seed has the ability to normalize blood glucose levels and reduce lipid profiles. [18]

Okra is Beneficial for Individuals Experiencing Frailty, Fatigue, and Symptoms of Depression [7]

The nutrient-rich vegetable okra has been shown to have anti-fatigue properties. According to a study [23] of the components of okra stalks, the seeds contain compounds that are essential for combating fatigue.

The seeds contained significant amounts of total polyphenols, total polysaccharides, total flavonoids, isoquercitrin, and quercetin-3-O-gentibiose. These substances contributed to the antioxidant and anti-fatigue properties of the seeds.

The study also found that okra seeds decreased blood levels of lactic acid and urea nitrogen, increased hepatic glycogen storage, and enhanced antioxidant capacity by lowering malondialdehyde levels and increasing superoxide dismutase and glutathione peroxidase levels.

According to these findings, okra seeds play a significant role in combating fatigue. Due to their antioxidant activity, polyphenols and flavonoids are likely the active constituents causing these anti-fatigue effects. To thoroughly comprehend the mechanisms underlying okra’s anti-fatigue properties, however, more research is required. [23]

Okra is also used to treat ulcers, lung inflammation, sore pharynx, and irritable bowel syndrome. Incorporating okra into your diet can provide relief and support for these health issues, offering a natural and nutrient-rich method for enhancing health. [7]

Okra can Help Boost Your Immune System

Okra is full of antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals, all of which help to boost the defense system. These nutrients help the body make immune cells, make them work better, and protect them from dangerous pathogens. This makes the body’s defenses stronger.

Okra can Help Reduce Global Hunger

Food insecurity and malnutrition in developing nations can be addressed by eating local crops like okra. Several okra pod accessions had different nutritional and antinutrient contents, according to a recent study. Protein, fiber, calcium, iron, and zinc were higher in some accessions, but antinutrients were decreased. The study also indicated that these accessions may have excellent mineral bioavailability. By encouraging the cultivation and consumption of these nutrient-rich indigenous okra pods, we can reduce malnutrition and increase dietary diversity. [1]

Now that we know the benefits of okra, lets learn how you would eat it.

How to Eat Okra?

You can eat okra in many different ways. You can cook, steam, roast, or stir-fry with it. Soups, stews, and sauces can also have okra in them. It is often used in gumbo, and you can pickle it to make it taste even better. Make sure to wash the okra well, cut off the ends, and then cook it in any way you like to experience its unique flavor and texture.

Okra Recipe 1: Okra Water

Okra water is a beverage made by soaking okra pods in water. People often use it because they think it will help them in different ways. Because okra has mucilage in it, the water has a slightly slimy feel to it. Some people drink okra water because it may help with digestion, controlling blood sugar, and keeping their weight in check. But there isn’t much solid evidence to back up these claims. It’s important to remember that okra water is not a replacement for a healthy diet or advice from a doctor. Before trying okra water or making any other changes to your diet, you should talk to a health care provider.

Learn: How to make Okra water?

Okra Recipe 2: Air Fryer Bhindi (Indian)

Indian food called bhindi can be air-fried instead of being deep-fried, which is healthy and tastes better. With very little oil and hot air moving in the air fryer, the bhindi gets a crispy outside while keeping its soft texture and unique flavors. This dish is a tasty, guilt-free treat made with bright green okra and a tempting mix of spices. Whether you eat it as a side dish, a snack, or as part of a major meal, air fryer bhindi is a delicious way to enjoy the authentic flavors of Indian food while cooking it in a healthier way.

Recipe 3: Fried Okra in Air Fryer

Get ready for your mouth to water when you eat Fried Okra in the Air Fryer. This dish takes a Southern favorite to a whole new level by making it healthy. Every bite is a burst of flavor, with a crispy outside and a soft inside. With the air fryer’s magic, you can treat yourself without feeling guilty or giving up taste. Whether you eat it as a snack or a side dish, this easy meal will satisfy your hunger and make you want more. This tasty treat made in an air fryer will take your okra game to the next level and blow your taste buds away.

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