Garden egg leaf is traditionally used as a kidney detoxifier, serves as blood tonic, promotes fertility, prevent stomach ulcers, etc. And the most popular way of consuming garden egg leaves is by using as vegetable.
In this post, we discuss the various ways African eggplant leaves can make your life better and some additional (and interesting) information as well.
Garden egg leaf, which is locally known as “akwukwo anara and efo Igbo,” in the Eastern and South –Western part of Nigeria is one of those plants that secretly carry some unbelievable health benefits.
Garden egg leaves or African eggplant leaves is well-known as a blood pumping vegetables mostly when eaten raw.
What is Garden egg leaf?
Garden egg leaf or African eggplant leaf is a medicinal leaf that has a bitter taste, nutritious vegetable of a West African cousin of the garden egg. They are consumed in West, Central, and East Africa, as well as Southeast Asia. Garden egg is a species of flowering plant in the solanaceae or nightshade family. This plant is known to have originated from Tropical Africa (Norman, 1992), and widely distributed throughout the temperate and tropical regions.
What Is garden leaf Good For?
Several studies have proven how garden egg leaves can help cleanse the internal body organs like the kidney, liver, hearts etc.
These leaves removes toxins from the kidney and other organs. This process is most effective when eaten raw or cooked for few minutes before consumption. Additionally, African eggplant leaf is known for its blood pumping abilities.
Though, there are several other ways the garden egg leaf can be utilized – but in this post, we stick to the health benefits, the most important of all.
What are the health benefits of garden egg leaf?
The wonderful health benefits of this plant are due to the abundance of nutrients in it.
It has a high water content, no cholesterol and fat, a source of vitamins C, K, magnesium, phosphorus, copper, folic acid, potassium and manganese.
Without lingering, let’s look at 16 unbelievable health benefits of garden egg leaves:
Contains powerful antioxidants
Antioxidants are compounds that prevent cell damage when oxygen reacts with harmful substances in the body known as free radicals.
This damage can disrupt normal cellular function and cause inflammation, which can trigger a variety of chronic conditions.
Eating foods rich in antioxidants works to neutralize free radicals, thus preventing oxidation and its effects.
Nasunin is the most abundant type of anthocyanin antioxidant found in african eggplant leaves. It helps fight oxidative stress and inflammation, which is at the root of most diseases. It also protects against cell mutations and death and DNA damage.
Garden egg leaves are well known for its blood pumping abilities especially for people suffering from a blood shortage or are anemic.
For ages, garden egg leaves has been used as a miracle vegetable for weak patients.
For blood tonic, it is advisable to get fresh leaves, wash them in clean cold water, slice and eat it raw. You can also prepare it with Ukpaka (fermented oil bean seeds), crayfish, salt, and oil to serve as a side dish or squeezed to get the juice.
The African eggplant leaf is mostly recommended by medical experts to increase blood levels.
Provides better control over diabetes
The african eggplant leaf is one of the vegetable that should be present in the menu of people with type 2 diabetes.
Due to its high fiber content and small amount of soluble carbohydrates, it is among the best vegetables for diabetics. It’s properties may make it useful as a regulator of glucose and insulin activity in the body.
Researchers have found that the active ingredient in eggplant, nasunin, helps prevent dangerous spikes in blood sugar in diabetes.
This is because it inhibits an enzyme secreted by the salivary glands during chewing. This enzyme slows down the breakdown of starch in food.
When insulin levels are stable and the body does not experience drastic dips and spikes in blood sugar, the potentially dangerous side effects of the disease can be avoided.
Eating vegetables that are high in fiber, water and nutrients helps the body get rid of waste and toxins from the digestive tract. The digestive system and especially the colon need excellent hydration to eliminate bowel movements.
Garden egg leaf serve as detoxifiers to the kidney. Consuming garden egg leaves will naturally help cleanse the kidney by purifying the blood and unwanted substance from entering the organ.
These leaves also help prevent kidney-related problems, especially those substances that disrupt blood purification, like kidney failure.
Potassium compound present in Africa eggplant leaves also helps the kidney filter blood.
Additionally, these leaves naturally helps to prevent dialysis by the total purification of the kidney.
Please note: that garden egg leaf is more effective when eaten raw or converted into juice by boiling for a few seconds and then filtering the liquid in a container; you can take this juice three times per day or more.
Traditionally, these leaves has been used as a remedy for stomach ulcers. According to research, garden egg leaves contains anti-ulcer properties, which has been found effective after a recent experiment on rats.
Improves heart health
African eggplant leaf is rich in bioflavonoids, which are great for lowering blood pressure. This in turn reduces the workload on the heart, improves circulation and generally promotes a healthy cardiovascular system.
The already mentioned fiber in the vegetable can reduce bad cholesterol and triglycerides, which are risk factors for the development of deadly diseases such as heart attack, atherosclerosis and stroke.
The anthocyanins in the composition also help quell inflammation, which can increase the risk of these life-threatening conditions.
Garden egg leaf is rich in various cancer-fighting compounds, including anthocyanin, solasodin rhamnosyl glycosides (SRG), and chlorogenic acid, which have been shown to protect against cancer .
Scientists report two cases in which african eggplant leaf extract was successfully used to treat non-melanoma skin cancer.
Chlorogenic acid prevents the formation of tumor cells from free radicals and inhibits their growth and proliferation. It also acts as an antimicrobial, antiviral and anti-inflammatory agent.
Traditionally, these leaves has been used to treat infertility issues as many African cultures believe it works and helps boost sexual health for both men and women. These leaves represent fertility according to African culture. However, there no scientifically claims to this.
Beneficial for brain function
Garden egg leaf is an excellent source of phytonutrients that are believed to increase cognitive performance and general mental health. They can not only protect against free radical activity, but also increase blood flow to the brain.
Phytonutrients and potassium, which helps dilate blood vessels, can be considered brain boosters delivering more oxygen-rich blood to the brain.
Due to its high fiber and water content, garden egg leaves are useful in weight loss diets. They offer a wide range of essential phytonutrients, vitamins and minerals and are also low in calories, a plus in any healthy diet. This leaves also provides a quick feeling of satiety, which prevents overeating.
Useful in pregnancy
Garden egg leaf is a good source of folic acid, making it an ideal food for pregnant women.
Adequate amounts of this substance are known to directly protect babies from neural tube defects, which is why expectant mothers are recommended to monitor their regular intake.
According to studies, garden egg leaves are beneficial for heart health due to their ability to fight inflammation and oxidative stress. Arteries will be healthier and cholesterol will have a more balanced level, due to the ability of the phytonutrients present in garden egg leaf to improve blood circulation and reduce the formation of plaque and deposits in major arteries, including the aorta.
Studies show that garden egg leaf contains a strong cardioprotective component that has the ability to increase the function of the left ventricle (one of the main chambers of the heart that pumps blood) and reduce apoptosis (a form of programmed cell death).
Source of vitamins
Garden egg leaf provide a significant amount of vitamins B1 and B6, two of the vitamins involved in a healthy metabolic process, and some of the other B-complex vitamins that boost energy.
Vitamin B6 is needed to create amino acids, which are the building blocks of proteins. Amino acids are used for many bodily functions, and without sufficient amounts, problems such as lack of energy, skin inflammation, anemia, depression, chronic fatigue, and nutrient deficiencies can occur. In addition, vitamin B6 is involved in the formation of hemoglobin (which carries oxygen throughout the body), neurotransmitters (which help control mood) and regulates blood sugar.
Instead, another B-complex vitamin found in eggplants, B1 is useful for controlling metabolism, maintaining a healthy cardiovascular system, healthy brain function, etc.
Combating manganese deficiency
Manganese, an important mineral present in small amounts in our body. It acts as an antioxidant, eliminating free radicals from the body and avoiding damage caused by oxidative stress.
Some of the required manganese is present in our body naturally, while the rest must be taken in through a healthy and nutritious diet.
Manganese is essential for the proper metabolism of calcium and for the creation of enzymes necessary for the formation of hard bone structure.
In addition, manganese assists the body in metabolic activity, connective tissue formation and hormonal regulation critical to reproductive health and fertility.
It also plays a role in regulating thyroid function, fighting depression and helping to control blood sugar levels.
May help prevent anemia
Iron deficiency is very dangerous for overall health and manifests itself as anemia. It is characterized by headaches, fatigue, weakness, depression and even cognitive dysfunction.
Therefore, eating foods high in iron can help fight anemia, and garden eggplant leaves are one of them.
In addition, it contains copper – another main component of red blood cells (erythrocytes).
Without these two minerals, the red blood cells in the body cannot function normally. With healthier and more numerous red blood cells, you will see a noticeable surge of energy and strength, which will eliminate the feeling of fatigue.
What is garden egg water good for?
This drink is beneficial for those with constipation. That’s because the high fiber content helps regulate the intestine and improve digestion. In addition, garden egg water is known for its diuretic effect, helping to relieve fluid retention.
How to make garden egg juice?
The process is quite simple.
- Wash the garden egg leaves thoroughly to remove dirt.
- Cut it into tiny pieces to enable easy squeezing or pounding.
- Then squeeze effectively and filter the juice.
Are there other benefits of garden egg leaf?
Traditionally, African eggplant leaves has been used as a treatment for many ailments from indigestion, infertility, anemia, and to the prevention of cancer. It also help maintain healthy, clear skin. You can incorporate fresh garden egg leaves easily into your diet.
What are the side effects of garden egg leaf?
Consumption of garden egg leaves causes no notable side effect unless on those who might be allergic to it. However, it should be consumed in moderation.
Issues regarding pregnancy
There are no additional side effects of garden egg leaf at pregnancy; therefore, you can use it. Infact, it helps with problems with conception.
Garden egg leaf is a nutritious vegetable that is well-known for its pumping blood ability and offers so many health benefits. It is rich in potassium, fibre and magnesium.
Infact, the nutrients in the garden egg leaves are gained when eaten raw or used for culinary purposes, medicinal and curative areas.
In addition, you can incorporate fresh African eggplant leaves easily into your diet by adding them to Abacha, groundnut sauce, african salad, porridge potato, etc.
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