Okra, also referred to as lady’s fingers are generally used as a vegetable in cooking. This edible seed pod with a sticky juice is a good source of minerals, vitamins, antioxidants, and fiber. It contains vitamin C, vitamin B6, vitamin A, Vitamin K, thiamine, magnesium, potassium, calcium, iron, niacin, phosphorus, and copper.
When we talk about heart health, okra has been found to be beneficial.
Okra And Heart Health
High cholesterol levels are linked to a greater risk of heart diseases. In a study published in the Journal of Food Processing & Technology, researchers have found that okra contains soluble fiber that helps in naturally lowering down cholesterol levels which in turn, lowering our chances of cardiovascular diseases. Aside from this, its pectin content also works by modifying the creation of bile within the intestines in order to reduce high blood cholesterol.
Additionally, research revealed that okra is rich in polyphenols that can help lower down inflammatory markers associated with heart disease.
Moreover, okra also has mucilage, a thick gel-like substance that binds to cholesterol during digestion so that it can be excreted with stools instead of being absorbed into your body.
In another study, researchers have found that a high-fat diet containing 1% or 2% okra powder can help eliminate more cholesterol in stools and lower down total blood cholesterol levels as compared to the control group with a high-fat diet but without okra powder.
Other Reasons To Consume Okra
- Enhance skin health
- Promote digestive health
- May aid in cancer prevention
- Great for bone health
- Help manage diabetic symptoms
- Ensures healthy vision
- Supports a healthy pregnancy
Consume more okra to improve overall health. It can be roasted and simply flavor with olive oil, salt, and pepper, or smothered with spices. We can also add okra into soups.
Other Tips To Keep Our Heart Healthy
- Be smoke-free
- Be physically active
- Manage your blood pressure
- Manage diabetes
- Achieve and maintain a healthy weight
- Enjoy a variety of nutritious foods
- Eat Less Salt
- Replace unhealthy fats with healthy fats