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Benefits of Okra And Its Side Effects

Okra is rich in Vitamin A and flavonoid anti-oxidants like beta-carotene, xanthin and lutein that help to protect us from lung and oral cavity cancers. The folates present in okra help to reduce the occurrence of neural tube defects in newborn babies. Consumption of okra helps to improve digestion, vision, skin health and also help to strengthen bones. It also takes care of your heart and the entire cardiovascular system by helping to reduce cholesterol levels and blood pressure. It further strengthens our immune system.

Benefits of Okra And Its Side Effects

Table of Content

Nutritional Value of Okra
Nutritional facts Per 100 Grams
Vitamins and Minerals
Health Benefits of Okra
Helps to improve digestion
Strengthens body immunity
Good for your eyes
Controls diabetes and prevents kidney disease
Good for your skin
Helps to lower blood pressure
Helps to control obesity
Helps to control asthma
Prevents constipation
Uses of Okra
Side-Effects & Allergies of Okra
Cultivation of Okra


Okra or ‘lady’s finger’ or ‘bamia pod’ is a perennial flowering plant belonging to the Malvaceae family. It is a plant of the tropical and warm climates and the plant is highly valued due to its green pods. This vegetable is used in many dishes and cuisines and is rich in nutritional content. There is, however, some debate regarding the origin of this vegetable.

Nutritional Value of Okra

Okra contains a number of essential vitamins and minerals and so is beneficial for your health. Okra is very low in calories and has no saturated fats or cholesterol. It is rich in dietary fiber, mucilage and folates which have a number of pertinent nutritional benefits. Okra is rich in Vitamin A, Vitamin C, B-complex group of vitamins like niacin, thiamine, pantothenic acid and vitamin B-6. Essential minerals like calcium, iron, manganese and magnesium are present in okra.

Nutritional facts Per 100 Grams

33 Calories
0.2 g Total Fat
7 mg Sodium
299 mg Potassium
7 g Total Carbohydrate
1.9 g Protein

Vitamins and Minerals

14 % Vitamin A
0.08 Calcium
38 % Vitamin C
3 % Iron
10 % Vitamin B-6
14 % Magnesium

Health Benefits of Okra

Mentioned below are the best health benefits of Okra
Health Benefits of Okra

Helps to improve digestion

Okra contains mucilaginous fiber that helps to move food through the digestive tract as it adds bulk to the stool. This helps to prevent digestive issues like bloating, cramping, constipation and excess gas. It adds bulk to watery stools and even helps to prevent diarrhea. The fiber also helps us to regulate the absorption of sugar in our body as it clears out the excess cholesterol.

Strengthens body immunity

Okra is rich in Vitamin C and other anti-oxidants that help to strengthen our body immunity by acting against the harmful free radicals in our body. Vitamin C also stimulates the production of more white blood cells which are our body’s primary defense mechanisms against foreign pathogens and other materials.

Good for your eyes

Okra has high content of Vitamin A and other anti-oxidants which act against the free radicals in our body. These free radicals, which are formed as a result of cellular metabolism, can cause harm to the cells which allow us to see. Thus okra helps to protect our eyes against the dangerous effects of these free radicals and prevent the onset of macular degeneration and cataracts.

Controls diabetes and prevents kidney disease

The high content of soluble fiber in okra helps to regulate blood sugar levels. This helps to manage diabetes as the soluble fiber affects the absorption of sugars in the intestine. This further reduces the chances of developing kidney disease as half of such ailments develop from diabetes.

Good for your skin

The dietary fiber in okla keeps digestive problems at bay and provides you with healthy skin. Vitamin C helps to repair body tissues and help your skin to look younger and more vibrant. The nutrients in okla also prevent skin pigmentation and helps to rejuvenate your skin.

Helps to lower blood pressure

Potassium, present in okla, helps to balance sodium and thus maintains a proper fluid balance in the body. It also helps to reduce the pressure on the cardiovascular system by relaxing the blood vessels and arteries and thereby reducing blood pressure. Blood pressure regulation helps to prevent atherosclerosis and blood clotting.

Helps to control obesity

Containing no unsaturated fats or cholesterol and being very low on calories, okla can be a useful substitute to calorific food if you are trying to lose weight. It is also rich in nutrients and dietary fiber which helps to keep your digestive system in good health. This nutrition-rich food fills you up and prevents you from gorging on unhealthy food and thus helps to fight obesity.

Helps to control asthma

It is recommended for people suffering from asthma to incorporate okra in their diet. Okra has shown some to have some positive effects in the treatment of asthma.

Prevents constipation

Incorporating okla in your diet helps your body to properly absorb water as this vegetable is rich in a number of essential nutrients. This, in turn, helps the stool to seamlessly traverse the digestive tract and get eliminated.

Uses of Okra

In tropical countries, okra pods are one of the most widely used vegetables. They can be consumed in a variety of ways – chopped, sliced, stewed or fried. The pods of okra can be pickled and preserved. The leaves of this vegetable are also edible and they are often utilized raw in salads. When okra is boiled with water, a transparent mucilage is formed which can be used to moisturize your hair. It also helps you hair to gain bounce and shine.

Side-Effects & Allergies of Okra

It is advisable for people taking metformin not to consume okra as it interferes with the drug’s action. Metformin helps to keep sugar levels in control and okra intake may nullify its effects. Moreover, okra is rich in oxalates which may bind with existing gall and kidney stones and cause them to deteriorate. Therefore okra should be consumed in optimum quantities.

Cultivation of Okra

Okra plant is cultivated tropical, sub-tropical and warm temperate regions of the world but its origin is debatable. The Egyptians and Moors had known the use of this vegetable in the 12th and 13th century respectively. It spread to Eqypt from the Arab states while it is believed to have come to Arab from Ehiopia. However, there are different voices from different parts of the world such as from South Asia, from Ethiopia and also from West Africa which all claim that this vegetable originated in their respective areas.

The pods of the okra are rich in nutrients. The okra plant is grown in the tropical and warm temperate regions all over the world due to its nutrient-rich pods. It requires a long warm growing season and it is highly sensitive to frost. A temperature of less than 20 degrees celcius is harmful for the seeds. Although this plant can grow in a wide variety of soils, sandy loam and clay loam soils are best suited for its cultivation.

Popular Questions & Answers

I am 19 years old girl. Currently I am doing my higher studies so I don't get much time to eat and I have to travel a lot. In a day at least 4 -5 hrs are gone. Becoz of which I did not get time n my health is not proper so suggest me something. Which can improve my health, which things I have to include in my diet which fruits n vegetables are good for me please tell me as soon as possible.

General Physician, Mumbai
Dear lybrateuser, - All seasonal fruits & vegetables are good ,carry fruits like apples, pears, guava, banana, also citrus fruits are good, vegetables include green leafy ones, cabbage, cauliflower, okra or any other seasonal, have healthy snacks in-between when you are travelling to keep up your energy supply like a handful of unsalted mixed nuts, a fruit, a whole wheat sandwich with vegetables & cheese, can buttermilk, juice( preferably vegetable or fruit), - have sufficient oral fluids including 7-8 glasses of water per day for proper hydration and digestion, keep sipping water wherever you are - try to have a proper time for meals, take a protein food in each meal such as eggs, yogurt, tofu, beans, lentils, pulses, sprouts ( can be carried as a snack) - have a protein rich breakfast so that it keeps you full & also provides energy.
1 person found this helpful

Hello, I have below queries. 1. I am suffering from kidney stone (2.6m). I want to know that is this size of stone dangerous and do I need to take the medicines to get the stone dissolved/flushed or it will flush out automatically. 2. How much time does it take to get this stone to dissolved automatically or through medicines (If automatically possible) 3. What are the things I should add in my diet 4. What are the things I must completely avoid.

MD (Hom) Medicine, BHMS (Bachelor of Homeopathic Medicine and Surgery (BHMS)), CCAH, MCAH
Homeopath, Indore
1. The size of stone is small and can be dissolved through homeopathic medicines. 2. Try to limit: Spinach Almonds and cashews Baked potatoes Beets Cocoa powder Okra French fries Raspberries Sweet potatoes 3. Drink plenty of water, curd, vit c.

My wife need to know what kind of fruits and foods are good to consume during 1st to 3rd month of pregnancy. She feels so hungry and sleepy. Please suggest me.

Homeopath, Hyderabad
It is important to include folate-rich foods in your diet even if you are taking folic acid supplements. Examples of folate-rich foods are dark green leafy vegetables like spinach and kale, asparagus, b, citrus fruits, beans, peas, lentils, avocado, Brussels sprouts, and okra.
1 person found this helpful

Hi sir, Please advice best diet and safe medicine for my cholesterol thanks please sir see the current reports. HDL=46-5, Triglycerides=195.20 ,LDL=157.71,VLDL=39.04, HDL =46, TOTAL= CHOLESTEROL=243.25.

Masters In Clinical Nutrition & Dietitics
Dietitian/Nutritionist, Bangalore
Hello user Sure ,we will help you But before prescribing any thing we need some information like. Vitals.Purpose of joining gym. Medical history. Family history. Occupation.Physical activity. Daily routine And many more So, if you want to contact us, you can contact us directly thru Lybrate.

Hi sir, Please advice best diet and safe medicine for my cholesterol thanks please sir see the current reports. HDL=46-5, Triglycerides=195.20 ,LDL=157.71,VLDL=39.04,TOTAL= CHOLESTEROL=243.25.

Homeopath, Hyderabad
Eggplant and okra. Nuts..Vegetable oils. Apples, grapes, strawberries, citrus fruits. Foods fortified with sterols and stanols. Soy..Fatty fish. Fiber supplements. Supplements offer the least appealing way to get soluble fiber.

Popular Health Tips

All About Leucorrhoea

PGDM In Cosmetology, Trichology & Weight Managmen, MD, BHMS
Homeopath, Mumbai
All About Leucorrhoea

Excessive discharge of a thick, whitish or yellowish, sticky, foul-smelling material from the vagina is called Leucorrhoea. This common problem may occur due to unhygienic conditions, infection of the genital tract, or impaired immune function. 

Unfortunately, most women are highly embarrassed by this problem. Well, women's are not only embarrassed in front of others because of this, but most of them also avoid discussing the problem with their medical health care providers, which is why the treatment for vaginal discharge caused by leucorrhoea could be a bit of a challenge.


  • Excessive intake of oily, spicy and unhealthy junk food.    
  • Hormonal imbalance caused due to severe mental stress and trauma too can cause leucorrhoea in young girls.       
  • Overindulgence in sexual activity.       
  • Following improper diet and lifestyle during menstrual cycles.       
  • Improper vaginal hygiene can cause leucorrhoea.
  • Alcohol & smoking etc.

Symptoms of leucorrhoea:

  • Thick whitish/ yellowish discharge.  
  • Lower abdominal pain
  • Painful sexual act. 
  • A backache and pain in the leg. Intense itching of the vagina. 
  • Burning urination and frequent urge to pass very little urine. 
  • Irritability and lack of concentration in work. 
  • Digestive disturbances like constipation
  • Tiredness due to loss of vital fluids as discharges. 
  • Strong smell or frothy discharge and rashes or sore spots on the genitals, etc.

Diet and Lifestyle Advice:

  • Drink plenty of water. Stay well hydrated.      
  • Eat more of fresh fruits and vegetables.        
  • Include bananas, cranberry juice, oranges, lemons, black plums, okra, leafy greens, onions, yoghurt in your diet.     
  • Include healthy herbs and spices such as ginger, garlic, fenugreek and coriander in your diet.  
  • Eat complex carbs (like whole grains, brown rice, oats, etc), lean protein (fish, yoghurts, nuts, sprouts, etc) and low-fat dairy products.      
  • Maintain proper hygiene. Wash undergarments with an antibiotic solution, and let them dry under the sun.
  • Wear loose, cotton clothes and garments.     
  • Exercise daily. Start with morning walks daily morning.
  • Avoid stress. Stress and strain since it may affect the hormonal level and may increase secretions. Try yoga.
  • Avoid simple carbs like white rice, white bread, maida, refined products, etc.        
  • Avoid foods that will aggravate this problem or increase your chances of getting leucorrhoea so avoid all heavy, oily, fried, sugary, spicy, and sour foods.       
  • Avoid tea, coffee, alcohol, aerated drinks.         
  • Avoid non-vegetarian food.        
  • Avoid wearing tight-fitting clothes.         
  • Avoid wearing synthetic or nylon underwear.  

Home remedies for leucorrhoea:       

  1. Drink the water residue which is used for the preparation of white rice which is the best remedy to treat white discharge because of heat. 
  2. Boil a litre of water and add 3 tablespoons of fenugreek seeds to it. Continue to boil till the water reduces to half. Cool and drink a bowl of this water every morning. It has great properties, which can help to treat leucorrhea naturally.      
  3. Take a glass of water and add a tablespoon of freshly squeezed lemon juice to it. Wash your vaginal area with this water.     
  4. Wash Vagina with Neem water. 
5 people found this helpful

Suffering From Piles - What Type Of Food Should You Eat?

Diploma In Diet & Nutrition
Dietitian/Nutritionist, Delhi
Suffering From Piles - What Type Of Food Should You Eat?

Piles or haemorrhoids as they are also known are an extremely painful condition caused by the inflammation of veins in the rectum and anus. Straining to pass stool can create tears in these veins and cause bleeding. Some of the factors that influence this condition are age, a diet that is rich in processed foods and chronic constipation or diarrhoea. Treatment for piles is usually a combination of dietary changes, medication and exercise. While some foods ease digestion, others can hinder it. Hence, it is important to know what to eat and what to avoid when suffering from piles.

Here are a few things you should include in your diet.

  1. Figs and prunes: Figs and prunes can be eaten fresh or in their dried form to prevent and treat piles. Both these fruits are rich sources of fibre and can even act as home remedies for constipation.
  2. SpinachSpinach is not only a rich source of iron and fibre; it also helps cleanse the digestive tract. Spinach also promotes regular bowel movements and eases constipation.
  3. OkraOkra adds bulk to stool and makes undigested food move faster through the intestinal tract. Okra is also rich in fibre and hence prevents constipation and the formation of piles. Additionally, it soothes and lubricates the intestines.
  4. Brown riceBrown rice is healthier than polished rice and also contains lesser calories. At the same time, it is a good source of fibre and hence a must have in your diet.
  5. Water: Lastly, drink plenty of water to prevent and treat piles. Water improves the digestive abilities of the intestines and eases the passing of stool. Not drinking enough water is one of the most common causes of constipation. Ideally, a person should drink 8-10 glasses of water a day.

There are also a few food items you should avoid when dealing with piles. Some of these are:

  1. SpicesStrong spices can irritate the digestive tract and cause diarrhoea and indigestion. Hence, avoid curries and food that is cooked in a lot of heavy spices.
  2. Red meatRed meat is difficult to digest and hence a common cause of constipation. For this reason, it should be completely avoided when suffering from piles. Processed red meat such as salami, sausages etc should also be avoided.
  3. Caffeine: Tea, coffee and sodas that contain caffeine should be avoided as they can make stools hard and dry. This can cause constipation and aggravate haemorrhoids.

In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

5165 people found this helpful

Diet For Lactose Intolerance

MBBS, Diploma In Child Health
Pediatrician, Hyderabad

What foods contain lactose?

  • Milk

  • Cheese

  • Yogurt

  • Ice cream

  • Sherbet

Items on a food label that contain lactose:

  • Milk

  • Milk solids

  • Skim milk powder

  • Cream

  • Buttermilk

  • Malted milk

  • Whey lactose

  • Curds

  • Margarine

Some foods that may have hidden sources of lactose:

  • Breads

  • Candy

  • Cookies

  • Cold cuts

  • Hot dogs

  • Bologna

  • Sauces and gravies

  • Dessert mixes

  • Cream soup

  • Frostings

  • Chocolate drink mixes

  • Salad dressing

Living with lactose intolerance

  • Take small amounts. In most cases you don’t need to remove all dairy foods from your diet. You may be able to eat or drink small amounts of dairy products without having any symptoms. It can be helpful to keep a food diary. Keep track of what you eat and drink, and write down when you have symptoms.

  • Try lactose-free and reduced-lactose products. There are many lactose-free and lactose-reduced dairy products available, including milk, ice cream, and cheeses. These can allow you to still enjoy dairy products. Ask your healthcare provider or dietitian about these products.

  • Take lactase enzyme supplements. These supplements are available over the counter. Taking the advised dose with your first drink or bite of a dairy product can help prevent symptoms. Talk with your provider about these supplements.

Sources of Calcium for a Lactose Intolerant Diet

Calcium and vitamin D are needed for strong bones and teeth. If you are not using milk or milk products, you may not be getting enough calcium and vitamin D from your diet. Ask your provider or dietitian for more information about your body's calcium and vitamin D needs.

The following are good sources of calcium:

300 mg calcium

150 mg calcium

  • 2 ounces canned sardines

  • 1/2 cup turnip greens, kale, or collards

  • 1/2 cup tofu      

  • 1 1/2 cups dried beans

100 mg calcium

2 people found this helpful

Lady Finger (Okra) for Sexual Health

Sexologist Clinic
Sexologist, Faridabad
Lady Finger (Okra) for Sexual Health

Lady finger Okra is another great natural vegetable that can help your sexual health. It is high in a number of vitamins and also a great source of zinc. As you know zinc deficiency is one of the major sources of erectile problems. Its high vitamin content also helps counter exhaustion and revitalizes sexual vigor.

Mens sexual health

As mentioned above lady finger (okra) is great for improving sexual health. You can stir fry some okra in butter or you can have the root powder of it with a glass of milk and honey. This will help you with your erections as well as give you  sexual stamina.

Women’s Sexual heath

Lady finger is also great for female sexual health. Women who suffer from excessive bleedings during their menstrual cycles or endometriosis can use it for their benefit. Poke holes in two to three okras and put them in a glass of water. Keep them overnight at room temperature and drink the liquid first thing in the morning. Drinking this for a few weeks will help reduce the bleeding during the cycle and also help in other matters of sexual health.

Okra is a great vegetable for sexual health and should be included in the diet on a regular basis.





10 people found this helpful

Best Foods for Fibre

Dietitian/Nutritionist, Lucknow
Best Foods for Fibre

Best foods for fibre: Fibre constitutes an important part of a healthy and balanced diet. Fibre is of two types: soluble fibre and insoluble fibre. Both these types have their own advantages. 

Soluble fibre: Soluble fibre is the fibre that dissolves in the water in our digestive system. 

Insoluble fibre: Insoluble fibre is the fibre that does not dissolve in water. 

Fibre can only be found in foods that originate from plants. Fibre cannot be found in poultry and dairy products. Hence, a diet that is rich in plant sources is necessary for fulfilling the needed daily intake of fibre. Fiber is important because: 

• Helps in blood sugar control. • Reduced risk of heart diseases and better heart health. • Also helps in weight loss as well as weight management. • Keeps cholesterol levels down. • Helps in keeping your bowel healthy. 

Thus, now we know that fibre is very important for a healthy body. So, here are the best foods for fibre. Best foods for fibre 

Here are some of the best foods for fibre:

• Split peas: These contain around 16 grams of fibre in a cup and hence are one of the best foods for fibre. You can prepare many tasty dishes out of split peas. 

Broccoli: Broccoli is also rich in fibre. Along with fibre, broccoli also contains other important nutrients. 

• Green peas: These little green balls also contain lot of fibre. Along with fibre, green peas are also rich in proteins. 

Kidney beans: Kidney beans, or popularly known as ‘rajma’ also has a high fibre content. Thus, rajma is also one of the best foods for fibre. 

• Pomegranate seeds: Pomegranate seeds are also rich in fibre. These little seeds are great as a snack. 

Okra: Okra, also known as ladies finger, also contains a good amount of fibre. This is also one of the best foods for fibre. 

• Chickpeas: Chickpeas contain around 12.5 grams of fibre in a cup. So, you can also add chickpeas for a fibre-rich diet

2 people found this helpful

Table of Content

Nutritional Value of Okra
Nutritional facts Per 100 Grams
Vitamins and Minerals
Health Benefits of Okra
Helps to improve digestion
Strengthens body immunity
Good for your eyes
Controls diabetes and prevents kidney disease
Good for your skin
Helps to lower blood pressure
Helps to control obesity
Helps to control asthma
Prevents constipation
Uses of Okra
Side-Effects & Allergies of Okra
Cultivation of Okra