Health Benefits Of Okra


The health benefits of okra include its ability to lower total cholesterol levels, improve digestive health, improve vision, boost skin health, protect infant health, prevent certain cancers, strengthen bones, improve cardiovascular health, aid the immune system, lower blood pressure, and protect heart health.

Okra is a flowering plant that is known in many parts of the world as ladies’ fingers or bhindi, and is most highly prized because of its seed pods. The scientific name of this interesting plant is Abelmoschus esculentus and it is unsure where the actual beginning of this vegetable was. Contrasting research says that it could have been South Asian, West African, and Ethiopian in origin, but the jury is still out. America is the main country that calls this vegetable okra, and it has many names around the world.

Okra is frequently used in dishes from the Caribbean to China, and its popularity is increasing all the time, particularly since this vegetable pod can be used as a pickled vegetable, an ingredient in soups, side dishes, and also utilized for its oil, which can be extracted and used as a vegetable oil.

There are plenty of alternative uses for okra, due to its wide range of health benefits, but most of the health benefits are due to the minerals, vitamins, and organic compounds found in this vegetable.

Nutritional Value Of Okra

Okra might not be the most conventional vegetable in the garden, but its rich content of vitamins and minerals, including vitamins A, B, C, E, and K, as well as calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium, and zinc. Furthermore, okra contains high levels of mucilaginous fibre.

Health Benefits Of Okra

Digestive Health: Perhaps the best part of adding okra to your diet is the significant increase it can have on your total fiber intake. Mucilaginous fiber like you find in okra can help move food through your digestive tract by adding bulk. This means that bowel movements are more regular and there is a reduction in gastrointestinal issues such as bloating, cramping, constipation, and excess gas. Oddly, it also helps prevent diarrhoea, because it adds bulk to watery stools. Finally, fiber can help to clear out excess cholesterol in the body.

Vision Booster: Okra contains a very high content of vitamin A, as well as antioxidant components like beta carotenes, xanthein, and lutein. Antioxidants are powerful compounds that destroy or neutralize free radicals, which are the dangerous byproducts of cellular metabolism. Free radicals are responsible for the degradation of the cells in the body, including those responsible for vision. With high levels of okra in your diet, you will have more protection for your sight, including macular degeneration and cataracts.

Skin Health: Vitamin A antioxidants are also able to protect skin health, by promoting quicker healing, reducing the appearance of scars and acne, and eliminating wrinkles. This is because the antioxidants are able to neutralise the free radicals which may have damaged those skin cells.

Immune System: The various antioxidant components of okra make it very beneficial to fight off free radicals, but the high vitamin C content also means that the general immune system is boosted. Vitamin C can stimulate the immune system to create more white blood cells, which can combat the other foreign pathogens and materials in the body that can compromise the immune system.

Blood Pressure and Heart Health: Okra is a good source of both vitamins and minerals, including potassium, which is an essential aspect of human health. Potassium is necessary to maintain proper fluid balance in the body because it balances sodium. Furthermore, potassium helps to relax the blood vessels and arteries, which therefore reduces blood pressure and lessens the strain on the cardiovascular system. This means that clotting and atherosclerosis will be greatly reduced.



Healthy Weight Loss Tips for Men Over 40 and Beyond


Simple strategies to reach and maintain your best body as you age safely
By Malia Frey – Reviewed by a board-certified physician. Updated April 25, 2016

Man weighing himself

Man weighing himself. Mike Kemp / Getty Images

Losing weight as you age is a struggle for both men and women at any age. When the pounds pack on, men may want to lose weight too. Women often complain that weight loss gets harder as they get older. But do men also have a harder time losing weight as they age? I talked to two experts on my Men’s Guide to Weight Loss panel about the challenges that men face when they try to slim down in their 40s and beyond.
They provided great weight loss tips for men (and women!) who are getting older and want to stay lean and healthy.
Does Weight Loss Get Harder with Age?
You might associate age-related hormonal issues with women, but men also have hormonal changes that can affect their weight as they age. “While men don’t have the myriad of hormonal issues that women do, we men do have our own set of hormonal issues,” says “Biggest Loser” champ Pete Thomas. He points to a reduction in testosterone levels, decreased muscle mass and a slowing of metabolism that men face as they age.   
Researchers do know that testosterone decreases with age and that less testosterone can cause a decrease in muscle mass. But scientists still wonder if the weight gain that both men and women face is caused more by hormonal changes or by changes in activity levels. Some studies indicate that age-related weight gain is inevitable while others suggest that you can minimize weight gain by staying very active.
Healthy Eating
Learn diet tips and recipes that make food the easiest part of your weight loss plan.
8 Tips to Lose Weight (or Stay Lean) as You Age
The rules for achieving or maintaining a lean fit physique don’t necessarily change as you get older. But there are some considerations that you should take into account if you want to slim down in your 40s or beyond. Use these tips to lose or maintain your weight as you age.
Connect with your doctor. Your expanding waistline may put you at risk for certain health conditions, including heart disease. Get regular check-ups and ask your doctor key questions about the way that your weight affects your health. If you get rid of your beer belly, you may improve your chances of living a longer, more active life.


Focus on body fat percent. Don’t throw away your bathroom scale, but fat-loss expert and best-selling author Tom Venuto suggests that you worry less about weight and focus more on body composition. Learn how to check your body fat percent. Then try to maintain more fat-free mass to stay active and maintain a healthy metabolism.


Build muscle. What’s the best way to improve your body fat percent? Build muscle! “Resistance training for life is a crucial part of the solution,” says Venuto about maintaining a healthy weight as we age. He says that some people find it easy to lose weight as they get older, but maintaining muscle mass is really the key to keeping your body lean and healthy.


Get enough aerobic activity. Building muscle is important, but don’t forget to do activities that get your heart pumping. Recommendations for the amount of exercise you need depend on your goal and can vary from 150 minutes per week to over 250 minutes per week. Change the duration of each workout to reach your goal and keep your body strong enough for sustained activity.


Incorporate functional training. If we gain weight because we become less active, as many researchers believe, then one way to minimize weight gain is to increase our daily activity. Functional training improves our ability to carry out activities of daily living, which can help us burn calories through non-exercise activity thermogenesis and stay lean.


Maintain healthy habits. As we age, it can get easier to let go of the routines that keep us healthy. For example, poor sleep may affect your food choices during the day. And if your alcohol intake has increased, your waistline may have gotten bigger because of it. Take time to evaluate and build healthy habits that improve your longevity.


Evaluate important relationships. Has your marriage been affected by a change in your weight over time? Has your sex life changed because of your size? Do you avoid active family activities because you’re too big? Facing these relationship issues may give you the incentive you need to make healthy changes and slim down.


Stay positive. Pete Thomas lost enough weight to win a Biggest Loser challenge. He says that you need to learn how to believe in yourself to slim down successfully. “If any man or women believes it will be really hard or impossible to lose weight then that becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy and even getting started with healthier habits becomes a chore.” He says the worst possible thing to do is to not even attempt to change.

Get Motivated to Leave the Weight Behind as You Age
If you are overweight and getting older, don’t use your age as an excuse to give in. Weight loss is possible for men and women in their 40s and beyond. Stay active, stay connected with your doctor and stay smart to get and keep a healthy body for life.
Jeffery Kahn. “Middle Aged Weight Gain; Men Unlikely to Outrun It.” Berkeley Lab Research News April 1997.
Erin S. LeBlanc, Patty Y. Wang, Christine G. Lee, Elizabeth Barrett-Connor, Jane A. Cauley, Andrew R. Hoffman, Gail A. Laughlin, Lynn M. Marshall and Eric S. Orwoll. “Higher Testosterone Levels Are Associated with Less Loss of Lean Body Mass in Older Men.” The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism December 2011.
Allan Mazur, Ronny Westerman, Ulrich Mueller. “Is Rising Obesity Causing a Secular (Age-Independent) Decline in Testosterone among American Men?” PLoS ONE Oct 16, 2013.
Williams, Paul T. “Maintaining Vigorous Activity Attenuates 7-yr Weight Gain in 8340 Runners.” Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise May 2007.

Health benefits of the moringa plant


The moringa plant is of African origin and has been touted as the miracle plant. It has been in Jamaica since 1817 and is now found growing islandwide. Still, many persons are unaware of its medicinal and nutritional benefits.

Moringa has seven times more vitamin C than oranges, four times more vitamin A than carrots, four times more calcium than milk and twice as much protein as milk. It has three times more iron than almond and three times more vitamin E than spinach. It is considered in many circles to be the number one treatment for high blood pressure and diabetes, which are common to Jamaicans.

The moringa plant increases the natural defence of the body to beautify the skin, promote energy, gives a feeling of wellness, improves the body’s immunity, stabilise sugar, provides nutrients to eyes and brain, acts as an anti-oxidant, and promotes good cholesterol and normal functioning of the kidney and the liver.

I read where your weight is 210 pounds and that you are diabetic. It is time to do something about your weight and diabetes and moringa can be part of this programme.

In the case of your diabetes, vitamin A found in high quantities in the moringa, acts as an antioxidant to convert beta-carotene, which thereby reduces the risk of blindness.

Vitamin C, which is in abundance in moringa, is very important for regulating effectively the production of insulin. It has been shown that insufficient vitamin C affects the capacity of the pancreas to secrete insulin. Vitamin B12, which is also found in the moringa leaf, is used to treat neuropathic diabetes. In addition to this, vitamin D which is found in large proportions in the moringa plant also reduces the chances of children developing type one diabetes.

Apart from using the moringa plant in the treatment of diabetes, there are also some other things which you can do to help with your treatment. You will definitely need to exercise. You may need to work out at least 45 minutes to one hour per day.

Try to eliminate bread, pasta, white flour and rice as much as you can from your diet and incorporate raw and steamed vegetables in your daily meal plan instead. Don’t forget to have your vegetables and a fair amount of fruits.

Moringa, especially the leaves, are also helpful in weight loss. Persons wanting to lose weight can benefit greatly from ingesting the moringa leaf, which can be cooked like a vegetable, eaten raw, or added to juices or tea. These leaves are low in fat and carbohydrates, but are extremely high in protein, vitamins and minerals.

The moringa leaf can be taken as a nutritional supplement because of its high nutritional content. It is also able to convert food to energy quickly and can reduce the possible storage of fat.