Wednesday, February 4, 2009

The Power of Okra

After I read this email from a friend I had a smile on my face and why is that because it was time for me to steam the okra. You see it's been almost a year now that I am steaming Okra every morning. I introduced Okra to hubby because I knew and I remember that Okra does give nutrients to our system and I am right. What makes me happy because hubby likes it too. I know that not many people likes okra because of being slimy when it is cooked but hubby told me that he doesn't care as long it gives nutrients to our body. And oh by the way, hubby dip his okra to an apple cider vinegar while I dip my okra to a cane vinegar.

The Power of Okra
A man has been suffering from constipation for the past 20 years and recently from acid reflux. He didn't realize that the treatment could be so simple --OKRA! He started eating okra within the last two months and since then has never taken medication again. All he did was consume six pieces of OKRA everyday. He's now regular and his blood sugar has dropped from 135 to 98, with his cholesterol and acid reflux also under control.

Here are some facts on okra (from the research of Ms. Sylvia Zook, PH.D(nutrition), University of Illinois .

Okra is a powerhouse of valuable nutrients, nearly half of which is soluble fiber in the form of gums and pectins. Soluble fiber helps to lower serum cholesterol, reducing the risk of heart disease. The other half is insoluble fiber which helps to keep the intestinal tract healthy, decreasing the risk of some forms of cancer, especially colo-rectal cancer. Nearly 10% of there commended levels of vitamin B6 and folic acid is also present in a half cup of cooked okra.
Okra is a rich source of many nutrients, including fiber, vitamin B6 and folic acid. He got the following numbers from the University of Illinois ExtensionOkra Page . Please check there for more details.
Okra Nutrition (half-cup cooked okra)* Calories = 25* Dietary Fiber = 2 grams* Protein = 1.5 grams* Carbohydrates = 5.8 grams* Vitamin A = 460 IU* Vitamin C = 13 mg* Folic acid = 36.5 micrograms* Calcium = 50 mg* Iron = 0.4 mg* Potassium = 256 mg* Magnesium = 46 mg

These numbers should be used as a guideline only, and if you are on a medically-restricted diet please consult your physician and/or dietician.
Ms Sylvia W. Zook, Ph.D. (Nutritionist) has very kindly provided the following thought-provoking comments on the many benefits of this versatile vegetable. They are well worth reading.

1. The superior fiber found in okra helps to stabilize blood sugar as it curbs the rate at which sugar is absorbed from the intestinal tract.

2. Okra's mucilage not only binds cholesterol but bile acid carrying toxins dumped into it by the filtering liver. But it doesn't stop there.

3. Many alternative health practitioners believe all disease begins in the colon. The okra fiber, absorbing water and ensuring bulk in stools, helps prevent constipation.

Fiber in general is helpful for this but okra is one of the best, along with ground flax seed and psyllium. Unlike harsh wheat bran, which can irritate or injure the intestinal tract, okra's mucilage soothes, and okra facilitates elimination more comfortably by its slippery characteristic many people abhor. n other words, this incredibly valuable vegetable not only binds excess cholesterol and toxins (in bile acids) which cause numerous health problems, if not evacuated, but also assures their easy passage from the body.
The veggie is completely non-toxic, non-habit forming (except for the many who greatly enjoy eating it), has no adverse side effects, is full of nutrients,and is economically within reach of most.

4. Further contributing to the health of the intestinal tract, okra fiber (as well as flax and psyllium) has no equal among fibers for feeding the good bacteria (probiotics) .

5. To retain most of okra's nutrients and self-digesting enzymes, it should be cooked as little as possible, e.g. with low heat or lightly steamed. Some eat it raw.

16 comments:

Umma said...

I never realized Okra has the power to cure constipation. I guess, I will sstart eating Okra so I could lose more weight bec of regular bowel movement hahahah..

How are you Manang Kim? I miss you na.

Manang Kim said...

I can vouch that okra helps a lot in our bowel movement hehe. And if you have a normal bowel movement that means your colon is working properly too. Start eating Okra.

Hi! I'm Grace said...

Hi Manang Kim, I miss that Okra ah. Saan mo ba nabili yan? Thanks for the information, my hubby had a problem with constipation lately. I will have him try that, too.

Manang Kim said...

Hi grace, oo nga sarap ang okra sa pinakbet diba? You can find whole okra in the vegetable frozen section in your grocery store.

Weng Forsgren said...

hi Manang Kim,
thanks for visiting an leaving message to my blog.
I myself loves to eat okra. Since when I was a young kid, pakuluan lang ok na and dip into vinegar hmm ang sarap.
I brought okra recently from Phils, and shared to my sri lankan and filipina friend here.
kahit everyday pa okra , buhay ako hehe.
btw, can we xchange links? tell me if it is ok for you,
thanks.

Manang Kim said...

Hi weng, sure I love to exlinks with you. Ako rin, okey na kung okra ang ulam ko with matching ginamos or vinegar.

ryliej said...

Hello Manang Kim, I added you on this blog... Have a blessed Sunday..

Rose

Manang Kim said...

Thanks rose. I added your two bloggy too. Happy Sunday.

Mom of Four said...

I love Okra on pinakbet, but if it will help my acid reflux and my mom's blood sugar, I guess, I would have to start eating it every day too..Thanks for the info Manang Kim..

Manang Kim said...

Hi Liz, you should try steaming okra for health benefits. For sure it does help a lot. I steam my okra to my little rice cooker.

ghafoor ahmad said...

All About okra nutrition. Okra is a popular vegetable of the housewives. The interesting thing is that it contains more nutrients for good health, such as fiber, mucilage, vitamin A, vitamin B6, vitamin C, niacin, calcium, potassium, magnesium, folic acid, iron.Very good for health.

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