Ladyfinger, also known as okra or bhindi, is a highly nutritious vegetable grown in tropical to temperate climate zones. It is the popular vegetable of Indians, despite many remaining unaware of the benefits of ladyfinger.
Nutrients in Ladyfinger
In 100 grams, nutrients in ladyfinger are:
- 2 gram of protein
- 7.03 gram of carbohydrate
- 9% of fibre
- 0.1 gram of fat
Apart from this, it contains essential vitamins and minerals, including Vitamin C, K, and E. It also contains niacin, folate, phosphorus, magnesium, copper, zinc, iron, manganese, and calcium.
Lady Finger Vitamin
Ladyfinger is a rich source of Vitamin C and K1. As Vitamin C is a water-soluble nutrient, it boosts the overall immune functioning. On the other hand, Vitamin K1 is a fat-soluble nutrient that plays a crucial role in blood clotting.
Benefits of Ladyfinger (Bhindi)
- Controls blood sugar: As it is high in fibre, it has several health benefits. The fibre eugenol in lady fingers helps in slowing down digestion, which further slows down sugar absorption in the blood. Hence, it avoids increasing blood sugar and stabilizes it.
- Improvise the anaemic condition: One of the bhindi benefits is improving the folic acid and iron content in the body, naturally. Hence, iron-rich nutrients in ladyfinger help in combating anaemic conditions in women.
- Lowers the risk of heart disease: High cholesterol is the major reason behind the higher risk of heart disease. However, bhindi has a thick gel-like material called mucilage. The main role of mucilage is binding cholesterol during digestion. Hence, it helps in expelling it out of the body through stools instead of absorbing it into the body.
- Helps fight cancer: In comparison to other vegetables, lady finger has high antioxidants. Hence, it prevents the oxidative damages caused to the cells, thereby lowering the risk of cancer. Improved digestion due to high fibre also prevents the risk of colon cancer.
- Beneficial for pregnant women: Folic acid or folate is the essential nutrient for the conception and development of the fetus in the mother's womb. One of the health benefits of ladyfinger is for pregnant women as it fosters balanced neurological development of the child.
- It helps lower cholesterol levels.
- Lady finger contains essential antioxidants, thereby improving heart health.
- Lady fingers help in reducing the risk of heart diseases.
- As it is low in calories, it helps in weight loss.
- One can easily add lady finger into one's diet, as it is easy and quick to cook.
- Vitamin K in Okra or bhindi is vital for healthy bones and even cure fractures.
Lady finger benefits for skin
- Help in skin repair: The carotenoids in the ladyfinger are the essential nutrient that ensures the growth and repair of the skin cells. Improved skin cells reverse the skin damage process.
- Provides glowing skin: One of the lady finger benefits for skin is that it provides glowing skin. It is rich in Vitamin C, A, folate, and calcium that removes worn-out cells, making them healthier and glowing. One can use its paste with other ingredients and apply it as a face pack.
- Prevents acne: Just apply a ladyfinger paste if you are suffering from acne. The antioxidant and antifungal properties provide a natural cooling effect to the skin.
Ladyfinger for Weight Loss
Ladyfinger is a superfood to include in your diet if you want to lose weight. It has enough dietary fibre, is low in calories, and contains almost negligible fat. Moreover, the fibre content keeps one satiated, which further reduces the cravings for snacks.
Lady Finger Benefits for Hair
- Frizzy hair solution: One of the lady finger benefits for hair is that it prevents frizzy hair and controls curly hair. It provides softer hair, strengthens the hair follicles and roots.
- Provides shiny hair: It has power pack nutrients and protein that nourishes one's hair. You can boil some bhindi in water to allow the translucent gel in the ladyfinger called mucilage to mix with the water. Let it cool down and use it as a natural conditioner after shampooing your hair.
- Treats dandruff: Using ladyfinger is the perfect home remedy for infesting lice and nits and treating dandruff.
Ways to Have Lady Finger (Bhindi)
- Stuffed ladyfinger or Guthi Bendakai is the famous bhindi recipe from Andhra Pradesh.
- Fried lady finger while tossing it in less oil is highly preferred in major parts of India.
- Use the crispy lady finger fries as a chaat to make your evening snack lip-smacking.
- Ladyfinger curry is a comfort food eaten with rice or roti. Different regions provide their signature touch to the curries. For instance, South Indians use curry leaves and wholesome spices to make lady finger curry.
- Use dried lady finger powder or its paste as a skin and hair care regimen.