Okra is an incredibly popular vegetable in some parts of the world (and becoming more and more popular in other places such as the United Kingdom). However, for those following a low-carb diet, the question ‘is okra low carb?’ often arises.
Is Okra Low Carb?
The answer is yes, okra is considered a low-carb vegetable and suitable for keto diets in appropriate quantities. One cup of sliced okra contains only 7 grams of carbohydrates, with 3 grams of fiber, resulting in a net carb count of 4 grams. This makes okra a great option for those looking to limit their carbohydrate intake while still enjoying a variety of vegetables in their diet.
While okra may not be the lowest carb vegetable available, it can still be a valuable addition to a low-carb diet. Its high fiber content can help promote feelings of fullness and aid in digestion. Additionally, okra is a good source of vitamins and minerals, including vitamin C, vitamin K, and potassium.
Nutritional Profile of Okra
Okra is a nutritious vegetable that is low in calories and high in fiber. It is also a good source of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. A 100-gram serving of raw okra contains the following nutrients:
- Calories: 33 kcal
- Fiber: 3.2 g
- Fat: 0.2 g
- Protein: 2.0 g
- Sugar: 1.5 g
- Carbs: 7.5 g
- Vitamin C: 23 mg
- Vitamin A: 283 IU
- Vitamin K: 31.3 µg
- Vitamin B6: 0.2 mg
- Potassium: 299 mg
- Sodium: 7 mg
- Calcium: 82 mg
- Magnesium: 57 mg
- Folate: 60 µg
Okra is also a good source of antioxidants, including flavonoids and phenolic compounds, which can help protect against cell damage and reduce the risk of chronic diseases such as cancer and heart disease.
According to the USDA, okra is a low-carb vegetable that is suitable for people following a low-carb diet. It is also a good source of fiber, which can help regulate blood sugar levels and promote feelings of fullness.
Okra and Low Carb Diets
One cup of raw okra contains only 7 grams of carbohydrates, with 3 grams of fiber. This means that the net carb count for okra is only 4 grams per cup.
For those following a keto or low carb diet, okra is a great choice as it is keto-friendly and has a low glycemic index. The glycemic index measures how quickly carbohydrates in food raise blood sugar levels. Foods with a high glycemic index can cause blood sugar spikes, while foods with a low glycemic index can help keep blood sugar levels stable.
In addition to being low in carbs and high in fiber, okra is also a good source of vitamins and minerals. It is rich in vitamin C, vitamin K, and folate, as well as calcium and potassium.
Health Benefits of Okra
Okra is a nutritious vegetable that offers many health benefits. It is low in calories and carbohydrates, making it an excellent choice for people who are watching their blood sugar levels or trying to lose weight.
Blood Sugar Control
Okra contains soluble fiber, which helps slow down the absorption of sugar in the bloodstream. This can help regulate blood sugar levels and prevent spikes that can lead to diabetes or other health problems.
Okra is rich in antioxidants, which help protect the heart from damage caused by free radicals. It also contains potassium, which can help lower blood pressure and reduce the risk of heart disease.
Okra contains compounds that have been shown to have anticancer properties. These compounds may help prevent the growth and spread of cancer cells, particularly in breast cancer.
Immune System Support
Okra is a good source of vitamin C, which is essential for a healthy immune system. It also contains other nutrients that can help boost immune function, such as vitamin A, zinc, and iron.
Blood Clot Prevention
Okra contains compounds that can help prevent the formation of blood clots, which can lead to heart attacks and strokes. These compounds may also help reduce inflammation in the body, which can contribute to a range of health problems.
Okra is rich in antioxidants, which can help protect the body from oxidative stress. This type of stress is caused by free radicals, which can damage cells and contribute to a range of health problems, including cancer and heart disease.
Potential Side Effects of Okra
While okra is generally considered safe to eat, there are a few potential side effects to be aware of.
Okra contains a type of protein called lectin, which can bind to carbohydrates in the gut and potentially cause digestive issues. However, the lectin content in okra is relatively low compared to other foods, and most people can tolerate it without any problems.
Okra contains oxalates, which are naturally occurring compounds that can form crystals and contribute to kidney stone formation in some people. However, the oxalate content in okra is not particularly high, and most people can safely consume it without any issues.
There is limited research on the safety of consuming okra during pregnancy. While some sources suggest that it may be safe to eat in moderation, others recommend avoiding it altogether due to its potential to stimulate contractions.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is okra a good low-carb vegetable?
Yes, okra is a great low-carb vegetable. It contains only 7 grams of carbs per 100 grams of raw okra, making it a great choice for those following a low-carb diet.
Can okra be included in a keto diet?
Yes, okra can be included in a keto diet. It is a low-carb vegetable that is high in fiber and contains only 2 grams of net carbs per 100 grams of raw okra.
What are the carb counts of different okra preparations?
The carb counts of different okra preparations vary. For example, 100 grams of boiled okra contains 4 grams of net carbs, while 100 grams of fried okra contains 13 grams of net carbs.
Is dried okra a keto-friendly snack?
Dried okra can be a keto-friendly snack, but it’s important to check the carb count. Some brands of dried okra may contain added sugars or other high-carb ingredients.
Is lady finger a good vegetable for a keto diet?
Yes, lady finger (another name for okra) is a good vegetable for a keto diet. It is low in carbs and high in fiber, making it a great choice for those following a low-carb diet.
How many net carbs are in a serving of fried okra?
A serving of fried okra (100 grams) contains approximately 13 grams of net carbs. However, the carb count can vary depending on the batter and frying method used.