Okra also referred to as Lady’s Finger, Gumbo or Bhindi is biologically categorized as a fruit although popularly utilized as vegetable. It is a flowering plant with edible seed pods and usually cultivated in warm and tropical climates, in countries like the Philippines. The most popular variety in this country is the green colored compared to the red one.
The fruit when cooked has a slimy texture, which makes it unpopular to most people, I however love Okra regardless if it is slimy. Okra is one of the ingredients in Filipino dishes like Pinakbet, Diningding or Sinigang although the simplest way to consume it is to steam the fruit and dip in shrimp paste. Aside form Filipino cuisine, I also like to cook Bhindi Masala which is an Indian dish.
In spite of the fact that Okra can be unappealing, its is packed with nutrition according this article posted on Healthline https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/okra-health-benefits I have listed below the most important health benefits of Okra but I also suggest that you read the full article because it has references to prove the claims.
Okra is very rich in nutrients, a very good source vitamins C and K1, one cup of raw Okra contains the following:
- Calories: 33
- Carbs: 7 grams
- Protein: 2 grams
- Fat: 0 grams
- Fiber: 3 grams
- Magnesium: 14% of the Daily Value (DV)
- Folate: 15% of the DV
- Vitamin A: 14% of the DV
- Vitamin C: 26% of the DV
- Vitamin K: 26% of the DV
- Vitamin B6: 14% of the DV
Okra is rich in antioxidants; polyphenols, flavonoids and isoquercetin, as well as vitamins that may reduce risk of serious diseases, prevent inflammation, and contribute to overall health.
Okra may also lower risk on heart diseases because it contains a thick gel-like substance called mucilage, which can bind to cholesterol during digestion, causing it to be excreted with stools rather than absorbed into your body.
So, if Okra is used in many dishes, you might be wondering why make tea out of it? The answer is one cup of fresh Okra would give me those vitamins and minerals that my body needed compared to cooked fruit. Furthermore, I noticed that the skin of a relative I haven’t seen for several years have improved. His skin used to be dry and dull and he looked old for his age due to stress, but it became more supple, plump and healthy looking. He also became active and alert physically and mentally as compared before, simply because he has been drinking fresh Okra tea every morning as alternative to coffee.
I was impressed with the effects of fresh Okra tea in him that I decided to try it, well alright, my other “excuse” why I am preparing fresh tea is because, lately I’m too busy to cook yet I need my regualr intake of Okra. How to prepare? It’s quite simple;
- Wash two pieces, medium size and young Okra.
- Cut in half
- Slice into small pieces
- Place in a mug or cup
- Add freshly boiled water
- Drink the tea while lukewarm
Because I like Okra, I also ate the sliced fiber… kinda slimy though! Remember that slimy thick gel-like substance called mucilage when taken can bind to cholesterol during digestion and lowers blood cholesterol! Isn’t that more than enough motivation 😉 ?
What are you waiting for, try this at home if you are looking for a less expensive but more effective alternative sources of vitamins and minerals. And, if you did try. please let me know in the comment section about your experience…. I’m quite sure it’s going to be exciting 🙂