Monday, July 7, 2014

Okra - Halamang Gamot / Herbal Medicine

 Scientific name: Abelmoschus esculentus L.
English: Okra
Tagalog: Okra
Coarse, erect, branched, annual herb, 0.6 to 1.5 meters high. Leaves are long-petioled, orbicular or orbicular-ovate, about 25 cm long; heart-shaped base; margins, 3- to 5-lobed. Flowers are axillary and solitary; corolla, large and yellow, and inside, deep purple at the base. Fruit is elongated, 10-25 cm long, 1.5 – 3 cm in diameter, tapering to a blunt point and containing rows of rounded, kidney shaped seeds.


Medicinal Properties
Demulcent, emollient, sudorific, cooling, carminative, stimulang, cordial, antispasmodic

Distribution
Cultivated for its edible fruit. Ubiquitous in market places.
Parts utilized
  • Roots, leaves, young pods, seeds.
Nutrition
Contains vitamins A and C. A good source of iron and calcium. Also contains starch, fat, ash, thiamine and riboflavine.

Medicinal uses
  • Decoction of roots and leaves as a tea or for washing.
  • Decoction of young fruit useful for catarrh, urinary problems.
  • Syrup from mucilaginous fruit used for sore throat.
  • Poultice of roots and leaves for wound healing.
  • Young pods for fevers, difficult urination and diarrhea.
  • Decoction of roots for headaches, varicose veins, arthritis, fevers.
  • Decoctions of leaves for abdominal pain.
  • Leaves also useful as emollient poultice.
  • Seeds used a coffee substitute. Paste of seeds, mixed with milk, used for pruritic skin lesions.