This high fiber vegetable can help you create your anti aging fat loss diet meal plan with ease. Okra is a high fiber vegetable known for its high soluble and insoluble fiber content. 100 grams of Okra contain 1.5% energy from calories, 7.03 gram carbohydrates, 2 gram protein, 0.1 gram fat and 9% fiber.
The most essential component of okra is the slimy material found inside the vegetable. The gel has very potent antibacterial, antifungal, anti-inflammatory, analgesic and re-hydrating properties. Okra is considered as the best component of a high fiber diet.
A high fiber diet is probably the best known diet plan that helps lower your risk of diabetes and heart disease, as well as helps in maintaining a healthy weight. Fiber isn’t digested by your body. It passes relatively intact through your stomach, small intestine and out of your body.
The soluble fiber dissolves in water to form a gel like material. This is usually found in oats, peas, beans, apple, citrus fruits, carrots, barley and psyllium. Soluble fiber helps lower blood cholesterol and glucose levels.
Soluble fibers may help to slow your body’s breakdown of carbohydrates and the absorption of sugar, thus makes blood sugar control easier to manage.
It makes you feel full longer and is one of the reasons fiber may help with your obesity weight management. The glycemic index of okra is in the low range, while its fat content is 0.3g. When taken in water form, its fiber binds with the food in the stomach and slows down digestion.
Because it is very efficient in reabsorbing water, it is able to trap certain substances, such as excess toxins, cholesterol, and bile. When trapped, these substances can be easily excreted out of the body through stool removal. It is also good for bloating, gas, and constipation.
The insoluble fiber promotes the movement of material through your digestive system and increases stool bulk. This is especially beneficial for those who struggle with constipation or irregular stools. Examples are whole wheat flour, wheat bran, nuts, beans and vegetables, cauliflower, green beans, and potatoes.
Most plant based foods, such as oatmeal and beans contain both soluble and insoluble fiber. To receive the greatest benefit, it is advisable to eat a wide variety of high fiber foods.
Benefits of a high fiber diet
- Normalizes bowel movements
- Helps maintain bowel health
- Lowers cholesterol levels
- Helps control blood sugar levels
- Aids in achieving a healthy weight
- Skin health, move the yeasts and fungus out of the body and prevents them from being excreted through your skin where they could trigger acne or rashes
- Gallstones and kidney stones, likely because of its ability to help regulate blood sugar
- Stroke, for a 7 more grams of fiber consumed daily, you reduce your risk of a stroke by 7%
Source of photo: Dr. Axe
Your best fiber choices
- Whole grain products
- Beans, peas, and other legumes
- Nuts and seeds, chia seeds
Refined or processed foods are lower in fiber. Eat more fruits and vegetables in as high as five or more servings daily. They are rich sources of fiber as well as vitamins and minerals.
Okra nutrition for weight loss
Okra is one of the favorite nutritious vegetables in the North Eastern Africa. The pods of the okra, measuring about 5 to 15 cm in length, takes about 45 to 60 days for harvest.
The pods are known to be very low calorie vegetables. They provide 30 calories per 100g besides containing no saturated fat or cholesterol. Okra is indeed a powerhouse of valuable nutrients. Here are its nutrition facts
- 5 grams protein
- 8 grams carbohydrates
- 37 micrograms folic acid
- 13 milligrams vitamin C (22 percent DV)
- 46 milligrams magnesium (11.5 percent DV)
- 460 IU vitamin A (9.2 percent DV)
- 2 grams dietary fiber (8 percent DV)
- 257 milligrams potassium (7.3 percent DV)
- 50 milligrams calcium (5 percent DV)
- 4 milligrams iron (2.3 percent DV)
The pods are rich sources of dietary fiber, minerals, and vitamins. They are often recommended by nutritionists in cholesterol controlling and weight reduction programs.
The pods are one of the richest sources of mucilage substance that help in smooth peristalsis of digested food through the gut and ease constipation condition.
The pods compose healthy amounts of Vitamin A and flavonoid antioxidants, such as beta-carotene, xanthin, and lutein. They are also rich in the B complex group of vitamins like the niacin, Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine), thiamin and pantothenic acid.
The pods contain good amounts of Vitamin K, which is a co-factor for blood clotting enzymes and is required for strengthening the bones. They are a good source of many essential minerals, such as iron, calcium, manganese and magnesium.
The healthy amounts of Vitamin A is essential for your anti aging skin care because it is important in maintaining a healthy mucosa and skin.
How to select and prepare the okra
Fresh, immature okra pods have an attractive rich green color. Look for crisp, immature pods. Do not buy over ripe, sunken, mushy, and discolored pods.
Wash the pods thoroughly in cold water to remove dirt, soil, and residual insecticides. Trim the ends and slice the pods as desired in the cooking.
If you are serving the okra as a side dish and don’t want the liquid to be released during the cooking, trim around the stalks in a cone shape, so that the pod isn’t pierced.
- Stir fry, chopped or whole (6 to 12 minutes)
- Steam whole (5 minutes)
- Grill whole (2 to 3 minutes each side)
- Chop and add to soups, stews and casseroles
Okra’s scientific name is Abelmoschus esculentus or Hibiscus esculentus. In various parts of the world, it’s known as okra, lady’s fingers, gumbo, okro (English); gombo, bendakai, bhindi (India), Kacang bendi (Malay) and quimgombó (Spanish).
I repeat, this vegetable is just fabulous for your skin, body, and beauty. Okra is a rich source of fiber, reduces blood sugar, helps conceiving, improves bone health, is anti-inflammatory, home remedy for cold and flu, relieves constipation, kills exhaustion and reduces colon cancer risk. It also prevents obesity, lowers cholesterol, prevents anemia, cures ulcers, boosts immunity and clears vision. Include it in your diet and see for yourself.
Okra health benefits
- Rich Fiber Source: Okra’s rich fiber content helps in better digestion, and regularization of bowels. The soluble fiber, Pectin, swells up in the intestine and helps in easier elimination of the wastes from the intestine.
- How to use Okra for Diabetes? The benefits of Okra for Diabetes are plenty. Just like kiwi fruits, okra has been found to be very effective in stabilizing the blood sugar levels. It has insulin-like properties that help to reduce blood sugar levels. Eugenol, a type of fiber found in Okra, helps to stabilize blood sugar by curbing the rate at which sugar is absorbed from the intestinal tract.
- For Pregnancy and Fetal development: Abundant Folates and Nutritional value in Okra, not only help in conceiving but also in fetus’ brain development, prevention of miscarriages, formation of the fetal neural tube, and preventing any defects in the tube.
- For Strong Bones: Vitamin K is a co-factor in the vital blood-clotting process and along with Folates, restores bone density, strengthens bones and prevents osteoporosis.
- For Asthma: The antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties of Okra, and rich vitamin C content, curtail the development of asthma symptoms and prevent fatal attacks.
- Respiratory soother: A decoction of leaves and flowers of Okra is used in treating bronchitis and pneumonia. Its mucilaginous (slimy, gluey) quality makes it an excellent home remedy for treatment of common cold and flu.
- Relieves Constipation: The rich fiber and mucilaginous content in Okra pods help increase stool bulk, facilitate proper absorption of water, bind to toxins, lubricate the large intestines, and ensure easy bowel movements, with its natural laxative properties.
- Treats Sun strokes: Those suffering from summer heat and sun strokes should include Okra in their diet. Relieves from weakness, exhaustion, and overall depression.
- Lowers Colon cancer risk: The insoluble fiber found in Okra cleans out the intestinal tract, decreasing the risk of colon-rectal cancer. The high antioxidants in Okra help protect the immune system against harmful free radicals and prevent mutation of cells.
- Prevents Obesity: Okra provides minimum calories, the fiber helps in keeping you full for longer, and the abundant nutrients nourish you. For your anti aging fat loss, you prepare the okra water by washing 4 or 5 okra pods, chopped in half, placed in a jar with water, and soak overnight for a minimum of 8 hours. It is best to squeeze the okra pods into the water to use the sap.
- Lowers Cholesterol: Okra contains soluble fiber pectin, which helps in lowering the serum (bad) cholesterol and prevents atherosclerosis. It does it by altering the production of bile in the intestines and aiding in elimination of deposited cholesterol and clots.
- Skin Detoxifier: Fiber aids toxic waste cleansing and Vitamin C aids in repairing body tissues, preventing skin pigmentation, reducing acne, psoriasis and other skin conditions.
- Lively Hair: The transparent mucilage imparts life and bounce to unruly, curly and lifeless hair. Okra benefits hair in different ways and acts as a great hair conditioner, scalp moisturizer for dry and itchy scalp, fights dandruff and lice, and adds a youthful sheen to your hair.
- Detoxification: Okra’s fiber not only aids the stool function, but the mucilage binds cholesterol and bile acid, ejecting toxins, dumped into it by the filtering liver.
- Immunity Booster: The high antioxidants and vitamin C content make Okra a good immune booster food. Other essential minerals like magnesium, manganese, calcium and iron fight against harmful free radicals and promote healthy immune system.
- Clear Vision: Okra contains beta-carotenes (precursor of vitamin A), xanthin and lutein, all antioxidant properties, preventing eye problems like cataract and glaucoma.
- Prevents Anemia: Iron, Folate, and Vitamin K aid in hemoglobin formation, blood coagulation, and red blood cell production, providing a supreme defense against anemia.
- Cures Ulcers: The alkaline mucilaginous content helps neutralize acids and provides a temporary protective coating for the digestive tract speeding up the healing of peptic ulcers.
- Treats Genital Disorders: Okra increases sexual potency and is beneficial in treating genital disorders like syphilis, gonorrhea, leucorrhoea, dysuria and excessive menstrual bleeding.
- Rich Protein Source: The seeds of Okra are an excellent source of first-rate vegetable protein and oils, enriched with amino acids like tryptophan, cysteine and other sulfur amino acids.
- Feeds Blood Network: Studies show that eating plenty of flavonoid and vitamin C-rich fruits and vegetables, such as Okra helps to support the structure of blood capillaries.
- Probiotics Feed: Good bacteria (probiotics), in intestines, thrive on Okra, contributing greatly to the health of the intestinal tract. It helps biosynthesis of Vitamin B complex, similar to how yoghurt serves the small intestine.
Okra is a magical vegetable whose texture varies dramatically depending on how it’s cooked. It exudes a glutinous juice during cooking, which thickens stews and braised dishes. It can be eaten raw in salads or cooked with curries or vegetable stews.
Okra is the preferred vegetable for the Olympic athletes of the Beijing Olympic Games. Because of its physiological effects, it has gained some interesting names including green panax in Japan and plant Viagra in the USA. The polysaccharides in okra are thought to open up the arteries in a similar way to Viagra.
Dr Axe. Okra nutrition: Improve heart health, eyesight & cholesterol levels.
Mathieu, A. (2017). Okra (ladies’ finger) benefits that are good for your health. CureJoy.
Okra nutrition facts. Nutrition-and-You.
With its numerous benefits, specifically its ability to aid in anti aging fat loss, okra is highly recommended vegetable to include in one’s diet. Okra is known to get sticky and mucilaginous when cooked in a liquid. Many people associate okra with slimy boiled preparations or greasy fried food.
This vegetable doesn’t have to be cooked. When sliced carefully and served raw, it has an exciting crispness, especially when combined with your salad. Okra is a versatile vegetable. It can be used in soups, curries, with rice, on its own, cooked steamed or boiled. Fish curry with okra and potatoes sound delicious too. In the world of weight loss, fiber is the only secret weapon you may have been waiting for. Effective anti aging fat loss diet can be absolutely developed with the okra as the main high fiber, low calorie component in cooking.