ALSO KNOWN AS
Lady's Fingers, Gombo
Tougher than she looks
Okra may be low in calories and carbs, but it contains more protein than most fruits and vegetables. One of the proteins it contains is called lectin, which is being studied for its role in cancer prevention and treatment. Some people are turned off by the texture of Okra, but studies have found that mucilage (the gel-like substance in Okra) can bind to cholesterol during digestion. Instead of getting absorbed into your body, the cholesterol gets excreted with your poop!
It’s also rich in polyphenols, including flavonoids and isoquercetin, which protect the heart by lowering your risk of blood clots and oxidative damage. Polyphenols are actually able to enter the brain and protect against inflammation and symptoms of aging. Expecting? Eating okra may help pregnant women meet their daily folate needs. Also known as Vitamin B9, folate helps lower the risk of a neural tube defect in developing fetuses.
Okra may be a fruit but she's cooked like a vegetable! It's actually incorporated into dishes across many cultures. You can grill, pickle, roast, fry, or even dehydrate this protein-packed delicacy!