Ten Amazing Reasons to Eat Okra
If you haven't had a chance to try Cajun gumbo, okra may be a new to you. As you'll see below, it is truly worth eating regularly. Depending upon the time of year or where you live, it could be challenging to find fresh okra. If this is true for you, frozen okra works well for many recipes. If you are able to buy okra fresh, choose smaller-sized okra over the big ones. The pods should feel crisp and firm to be sure they are tender when cooking. Buying organic is always recommended, but not always an option. To remove insecticides and/or pesticides you can soak okra in a mixture of 4 cups water and 1 cup apple cider vinegar for about 10 minutes, then rinse thoroughly.
There were so many benefits it was tough to narrow the list down to just ten, but here are some amazing reasons to eat okra!
- Anemia Prevention: Okra is rich in iron, folate, and vitamin K which aid in red blood cell production helping to prevent anemia.
- Balances Blood Sugar: Okra has insulin-like properties that reduce blood sugar levels. Okra also contains a type of fiber that helps stabilize blood sugar by reducing the rate sugar is absorbed.
- Decreases Risk of Colon Cancer: The insoluble fiber and antioxidants found in Okra clean out the intestinal tract and protect the immune system against harmful free radicals decreasing the risk of colorectal cancer.
- Heals Ulcers & Acid Reflux: Okra's mucilaginous content helps neutralize acid and provides a temporary protective coating for the digestive tract speeding up the healing of peptic ulcers, gastric and esophageal irritation.
- Immune Booster: Okra is high in antioxidants and vitamin C as well as essential minerals such as magnesium, manganese, calcium and iron, all of which fight free radicals and promote a healthy immune system.
- Improves Depression: Okra is a good source of folate which supports the release of serotonin (feel good hormone) easing depression symptoms.
- Lowers Cholesterol: Okra contains the soluble fiber pectin, which drags bad cholesterol out of the body before it can be recirculated. Okra also aids in elimination of deposited cholesterol and clots, helping to prevent atherosclerosis.
- Skin Detoxifier: Okra is a great source of fiber and vitamin C. Fiber assists with toxin removal and vitamin C aids in repairing body tissues, preventing skin pigmentation, reducing acne, psoriasis and other skin conditions.
- Strong Bones: The folate and vitamin K in okra restore bone density, strengthen bones and help to prevent osteoporosis.
- Weight Management: Okra has only 30 calories per one cup serving. The fiber in Okra also helps keep you feel full for longer.
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