Okra, also referred to as one of the vegetables that are enriched with power and has amazing healing properties. It is extremely advantageous for pregnant ladies. One of the vegetables that can be found in the market throughout the year, and one can get its best yield inspiring time. It is enriched with nutrition and an ideal source of vitamins, minerals and has a sticky juice that thickens the consistency of the sauces. It has a mild taste that has tiny edible seeds inside the pod. Okra is extremely beneficial for a healthy heart, to fight against cancer as well as in the formation of healthy bones.
This vegetable has its nutritional advantages. Continue reading to understand how good it okra during pregnancy. Also, find out five ways to include this fabulous vegetable in your pregnancy diet.
Is Okra Good For Pregnancy?
Okra is one rich nutrient vegetable that is an ideal choice to be added to the pregnancy diet chart. Okra is loaded with folate, which is an important constituent for the prevention of several fetal disorders. Folate is also important for the mother before she conceives as well as while she is nursing. It’s also rich in fiber and other nutrients like calcium, protein, calories, vitamins, beta-carotene, phosphorus, potassium, and carbohydrates. This can either be taken in boiled, stewed, fried, or in the pickled form to get the nutrients from it.
Nutritional Value Of Okra
Okra is one of the vegetables that favors hot climate, and it is loaded with nutrients. It has many vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, etc. which are quite favorable for the mother and the baby duo. It even has good traces of iron, niacin, etc. The nutrient intake of every individual differs with age and activity, as well. Let us have a look at its nutritional intake, as well.
100 Grams of this wonderful vegetable bears
- Energy: 30 kcal
- Vitamin B9 or Folate: 87.8 g
- Carbohydrates: 7.6 g
- Fiber: 3.2 g
- Protein: 2.0 g
- Fat: 0.1 g Calcium: 75 mg
- Magnesium: 57 mg
- Vitamin C: 21 mg
- Vitamin A: 0.198 mg
10 Benefits Of Okra During Pregnancy
Any diet that is a good combination of the consumption of fruits and vegetables is helpful in the reduction of threats to the health of an individual, especially diabetes, obesity, and heart, etc. The nutrient intake of Okra is very good during pregnancy and supports the proper development of the mother and the fetus. Let us study some more beneficial aspects of its consumption through pregnancy, and they are as under:
- It Is Enriched With Antioxidants: Antioxidants like beta-carotene, Vitamin C are widely found in Okra, which is good for the healthy development of the mother and the baby. It will also enhance the immunity of the mother, thereby, keeping common infections at bay.
- Good For Skin And Heart Ailments: Since it is enriched with Vitamin E, it is good for the skin. It also enhances capillary health and, therefore, good for a healthy heart. It also makes the immune system of the mother and the baby stronger.
- A Good Source Of Folate: Folate intake is very important during pregnancy as it helps in lowering the risk of fetal disorder. Folate plays an important role in the metabolism of carbohydrates and also helps in the production of red blood cells. Look at the chart given above. You can find out how folate-rich okra is. We strongly recommend to include in your diet, especially when you are between 4th to 12th week of your pregnancy. It is during this period the fetal neural tubes develop, and okra will help significantly in this development.
- Helps In Preventing Cancer: It also helps in reducing breast and cervical cancer and good for lactating mothers as it is enriched with lectin.
- Enriched With Fibre: Constipation is a common issue that bothers a pregnant woman. Okra has both soluble as well as insoluble fiber and thus a great source to prevent constipation problems, reduced appetite, and weight loss, etc. It also brings down the odds of contracting gestational diabetes by stabilizing glucose in the blood.
- It Helps To Fight Diabetes: It has been seen the consumption of okra helps to treat diabetes. Okra consumption also helps to bring down bad cholesterol and facilitate digestion.
- It Helps In The Prevention Of Osteoporosis: Since Okra is enriched with Vitamin K, it helps the bones to become healthy and strong by absorbing calcium and reducing the occurrence of fractures.
- It Helps To Promote Proper Sleep: Okra is enriched with amino acids, oils, and proteins that enhance the mental health of an individual and offer good sleep. Pregnancy is one of such time during which the women fail to have a proper sleep.
- Good For Flushing The Toxins: The consumption of Okra even helps to flush out the toxins and even regulate the level of glucose in the body.
- Promotes Healthy Hair: Okra is ideal for pregnant women as it helps in maintaining good hair and skin. It is beneficial, especially for expecting women who are facing issues of hair fall and skin rashes.
Tips And Ways To Include Okra In Pregnancy Diet
Okra is a wonder food and has a plethora of benefits. Okrabeneficial for both mother and the unborn baby. it is important to know how to include it in the pregnancy diet. Okra is best consumed in the form of a spicy or mild dish. However, there are many other ways which can be included, and they are as below:
- It is extremely important to remember that Okra should thoroughly be rinsed before cutting it. Remember, washing okra after cutting becomes difficult to cook as it becomes too sticky to cook.
- You can make a curry of your choice with this vegetable, which goes well with rice and roti.
- Search for the recipe for delicious okra soup. Try it. You will love it.
- This vegetable should always be cooked on low flame so that its nutrient value does not get reduced.
- Okras can be cut vertically and coated with gram flour and then fried for a delicious taste. You can have this delicious finger food as an evening snack with tea.
- Sliced okra can even be coated with breadcrumbs and eggs and then fried.
- Crush two pieces of Okra and soaked overnight in a glass of water. Consume it the next day. This helps in detoxifying the body and even maintain the cholesterol levels.
Thus, no doubt, okra is one of the wonder foods that can be easily consumed without having to worry about any of its side-effects. It can undoubtedly be added to the daily diet, and in case of allergies, it is best to stop consuming it and take doctor’s advice immediately.