9 Ways That Okra Benefits Your Health
This unconventional looking fruit is a wellness superstar. Eat plenty of it for okra benefits like reduced stress, stronger bones and more.
Okra contains folate, which produces red blood cells and helps repair and stabilize DNA. This powerhouse vitamin can also ensure normal cell growth and prevent against certain types of cancers. Roasting okra is an easy, low-hassle way for it to debut as a side dish.
Delivers All Kinds of Vitamins
Okra is abundant with many vitamins that are key to feeling your best. You’ll find everything from vitamin K—which supports bone health—to vitamin C, which helps your body heal from wounds faster and boosts your immune system. Learn how to cook okra.
Like other leafy greens, okra is rich in calcium, which helps keeps your bones healthy and strong. Make an entire meal dedicated to bone health by pairing okra with fatty fish like salmon or fruit like papayas and bananas.
Okra can help stabilize blood sugar and reduce blood sugar spikes after eating, making it a natural way to manage diabetes. Soak chopped-up pieces of okra in water overnight, and drink the juice in the morning to experience some of the fruit’s benefits.
Okra’s insoluble fiber helps keep your digestive system in great shape and lubricates the large intestine. The fiber in okra also feeds the good bacteria in your gut, which promotes a healthy intestinal tract. That ultimately leads to less cramping, bloating and other unpleasant stomach problems. (And with this gumbo, gut health has never tasted so good.)
The antioxidant-rich fruit has been found to help improve energy levels, making it a great snack to pair with your exercise routine, as it will keep muscles feeling stronger for longer. Okra seeds can also channel the taste of coffee without any of the caffeine. Just grind them and brew in a French press.
Folate plays another essential role in our health. It’s a B vitamin that helps produce dopamine, which is responsible for helping naturally lift your mood. While relieving feelings of stress, it can also aid in mending stress-related damage, including healing cells and boosting brain power.
Improves Heart Health
Okra contains fiber like pectin (if that sounds familiar, pectin is used to thicken many jams and jellies), which has been found to naturally help reduce cholesterol levels and the risk of cardiovascular diseases. It’s also rich in potassium—just like bananas—which helps with overall circulation.
The subtle-tasting fruit boasts high levels of vitamin A, so okra benefits your eye health and improves immunity against related diseases. It’s just a bonus that it will improve the appearance of your skin, too. Check out other foods that are great for skin health.