GARDEN EGG (EGG PLANT)
The garden egg, also known as eggplant aubergine, guinea squash, melongene and brinjal, usually has an egg-like shape and a vibrant purple colour. It ranges in various shapes, sizes and colours. The type of garden egg that is commonly found in west Africa, especially Nigeria is called Solanum aethiopicum.
Recent research conducted has shown that eating eggplant can boost overall health and well-being. And with laboratory analyses showing that the phenolic compounds in eggplant contain anthocyanins, a type of flavonoid, and chlorogenic acid, a powerful free-radical scavenger, it goes to say that this plant counted among the healthiest of plants.
Nutritional value of garden egg and its leaves
Here are some of the incredible health benefits of garden egg
Garden egg plant and the leaves possess incredible health benefits when consumed. Below are therefore some of the health benefits of garden egg
1. It helps to fights cancer
Garden egg leaves contain an anti-inflammatory property, which makes it one of the suitable vegetables, used to reduce swelling and prevent cancer-causing inflammations. These vegetables help in the prevention of cancer formation due to the presence of phytochemicals that fight free radicals prone to cause inflammations that might lead to cancerous diseases in the body system. Studies have shown that polyphenols in eggplant have anti-cancer effects. The anthocyanins and chlorogenic acid that are contained in garden egg help protect cells from damage caused by free radicals, thus preventing tumour growth and the spread of cancer cells. It was also shown that the anti-cancer action of anthocyanins appears to include preventing new blood vessels from forming in a tumour, reducing inflammation and blocking the enzymes that help cancer cells to spread.
Improves Kidney Health
It helps to prevent dialysis by the total cleansing of the kidney naturally. This leaves serves as detoxifiers to the kidney and it’s more effective when eaten raw or converted into juice by boiling for few seconds and then filtering the juice in a container; this juice can be taken 3 times per day or more.
It helps during pregnancy
Pregnancy can result to unhealthy cravings, habits and hormonal imbalances which can either affect the baby positively or negatively. Garden egg is good during pregnancy because its components help keep a healthy heart, reduces cholesterol, avoid malnutrition, prevent anemia, relieve stress, prevent edema, control blood pressure and more. As earlier mentioned, the leaves of garden egg contains numerous vitamins and minerals helps to provide good development, normal weight and prevention of birth defects for the unborn babies.
4. It helps in weight reduction
Garden eggs are highly recommended for weight loss diets because of its high fiber content. Fiber fills you up faster, causing you to eat less than you normally would. The compounds in garden egg do not only increase satiety, they also reduce appetite. Observation has also shown that eggplant, as it is also known, help reduce calorie intake by making a person feel fuller for longer. Green garden eggs work better for weight loss as opposed to the white ones. This fruit classified as a vegetable is also low in cholesterol and protein, further hindering significant or rapid weight gain.
5. It helps to improve vision
The research recently conducted shows that the creamy colour flesh of garden egg contains a reasonable amount of nicotinoid alkaloids and other spongy elements that is necessary to prevent poor vision usually caused by glaucoma and other related factors. By so doing, it helps to improve the overall vision.
It lowers blood sugar level
The garden egg contains element the reduce glucose absorption to the body. This reduces blood sugar levels and is great for diabetic patients who constantly must monitor these levels.
This may be new to some persons but it has been locally used in the reduction of sugar levels in the blood due to its content of high fibre and magnesium. It is also low in carbohydrate which makes it a good food source for diabetic patients. For reducing your sugar level, it is best eaten raw or drank as juice.
It has been confirmed that foods rich in fibre are slow to digest unlike some types of carbohydrates and do not provide the body with any calories. This makes the blood sugar levels more stable therefore, eliminating the fear of a spike in blood pressure.
Helps in Digestion
As earlier mentioned that garden egg leaves contain fibres, which one of its functions is the ability to help in the digestive processes. Fibres don’t get digested in the body or slow down digestion, which helps in the effective maintenance of movement of materials in the human’s digestive tract. This improves the digestive system and increases the bulk of the stools.
Adequate consumption of garden egg leaves are needed not just to help in digestion processes alone, but also to help maintain the digestive tracts and as well help in constipation reduction.
8. Prevents heart diseases
Garden egg is good protection against cardiovascular diseases, such as stroke and heart diseases. It is diuretic in nature, and because of this reason, pregnant women are advised not to consume it on a regular basis as it can stimulate menstruation in them. In addition to this, it is a good source of phytohormones that aids in the treatment of premenstrual syndrome and amenorrhea. For this reason, pregnant women should not take more than two garden eggs in a day.
Garden egg is rich in vitamins which help the heart function effectively. It contains soluble vitamins and water-soluble vitamins. It is rich in Vitamin B1 which is essential for proper functioning of the heart and nervous system. Vitamin B6 is also present to aid cellular respiration. Overall, garden egg reduces the risk of heart diseases and stroke.
It helps to Regulates the Heart Beat
Presence of potassium which contains an important salt helps in maintaining the heart condition and regulating the blood pressure. This makes this leaf very important for heart health.
One of the vital functions of potassium to the heart is to help in the regulation of heartbeat, therefore having too much (hyperkalemia) or low potassium (hypokalemia) can cause changes in the heart rhythm which is dangerous to health.
Therefore, an adequate regular intake of this leaf is essential in regulating and moderating the heart beat.
- Serves as Blood Tonic
Garden egg leaves serve has long been a miracle vegetable for anaemic patients and it is mostly recommended by medical experts for use in increasing the blood levels.
It has served as blood tonic for people suffering from a shortage of blood. To get this benefit, it is advisable that one gets the fresh leaves, wash it in clean cold water, slice and eat it raw, it can also be taken as fresh drink juice. Whichever way it is consumed, it performs the same function.
11. Improves Immune System
Garden egg leaves improve the immune system. This is because it contains antibacterial properties which can help fight diseases, therefore, strengthening the body’s immune system. By blending it into a juice it allows for better absorption of all these needed elements, we will come to a conclusion that its vitamins and minerals can significantly improve the general condition of one’s immune system as can be shown in the research conducted.