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5 Little-Known Facts About Okra That’ll Make You Stop Saying ‘It’s the Most Foul Thing!’

Tag: healthy eating

5 Little-Known Facts About Okra That’ll Make You Stop Saying ‘It’s the Most Foul Thing!’

Remember the black-eyed peas that your mother made you eat as a kid? Why do you think she forced them down your throat? It wasn’t for the taste, for sure — it was for their health benefits.

But what does this have to do with okra? Well, okra is very similar to black-eyed peas, except that it is slightly odder looking. Many individuals would also initially describe them as slimy and gross. In fact, if you’re like most people, it would be the last thing you’d eat on a plate full of other fruits and vegetables. But you know what they say: it’s often the last one you try that is the best.


Here are 5 little-known facts about okra that might just turn a hater into a lover in an instant.


1. Okra may help you fight fatigue.


Evidence shows that polyphenols and flavonoids found in okra seeds possess anti-fatigue effects, which can be deduced from their antioxidant activity. They also enhance your glycogen storage which is known as your body’s fuel reserve, keeping you from being exhausted easily.


2. Okra may boost your heart health.


Heart disease is the leading cause of death in Australia, and cholesterol is one of its biggest risk factors.

Okra contains a thick gel-like substance known as mucilage. This substance binds to cholesterol during digestion, causing it to be eliminated with stools instead of being absorbed into your body. It’s a solid addition to your diet if you have high cholesterol.


3. Okra may reduce your risk of cancer.


Okra has been used as a food for millennia, but it’s also an incredibly effective natural medicine. Its anti-cancer properties are especially impressive—and it’s non-toxic!

Okra contains high levels of vitamin C, which is crucial in fighting cancerous cells. It also contains phytochemicals that kill off cancerous cells and prevent them from spreading throughout the body. In fact, studies reveal okra may restrain the growth of breast cancer cells by up to 63%.


4. Okra may control your blood sugar levels.


Another impressive health fact about okra is its ability to lower your blood sugar levels—and that can be a big deal if you’re living with diabetes. High concentrations of fibre and polysaccharides in okra have been shown to stabilise blood sugar by reducing the absorption of glucose from your intestine. Okra can also improve insulin sensitivity, reducing your risk of many diseases.


5. Okra may help you navigate stress.


If you’re looking to reduce your stress levels, consider adding okra to your diet! It’s not just a good idea—it’s a great idea. A 2022 study has found okra alleviated depressive behaviours and mitigated stress in sleep-deprived animal models. In fact, its intervention effect was shown to be similar to diazepam tablets, a medicine used to treat anxiety, muscle spasms, and alcohol withdrawal symptoms.


Verdict: Give Okra A Chance


Okra has been getting a bad rap for its texture and taste. Most people would agree it’s a weird-looking vegetable (though, biologically, it’s a fruit), and the taste is just pure disgusting. That’s a shame knowing all of its potential health benefits and incredible nutrition profile. So don’t turn away from this green goodness just yet, and give it a chance.

Contact us today for meals that meet both your health goals and taste buds. At Hearty Health, we believe wholesome foods don’t have to be plain and boring, so we made them mouthwatering.


8 Not-So-Jolly Health Risks of the Holiday Season

It’s that time again! The holiday spirit is upon us, and you know what that means…more food, more family, more friends, more trips, and (hopefully) less stress.

While all of this sounds great, it also creates the perfect storm for some subtle yet chronic health risks to creep into our lives.

It doesn’t take a genius to see that sicknesses are rampant this time of year. Don’t be another statistic, and try to watch out for these eight not-so-jolly health risks that come with the holidays.


1. Foodborne illness

While we all know that foodborne illness is a risk year-round, it’s especially dangerous and prevalent during the holidays. This is because more people are around, and more food is being served at parties, dinners, and other events.

Preparing food to suit the whole family and a few friends and relatives can be risky if your kitchen is not designed to cook for a lot of people. Plus, guests often bring food to share. Non-perishable items like cakes aren’t the problem, but foods like desserts and casseroles that need careful preparation and storage.

Prevention tips:

  • Make sure to keep food at regulated temperatures.
  • Wash your hands often when preparing food.
  • Wash your cutting boards, knives, and utensils in between preparing different foods to avoid cross-contamination.


2. Slips and falls

During the Christmas season, you may be running around to get everything done or have extra people in your home. This can increase the risk of someone slipping and falling. As the weather gets colder, people are also more likely to walk on icy surfaces or wet patches.

Prevention tips:

  • Wear appropriate footwear like boots or sneakers when walking outside in winter weather conditions.
  • Make sure your home has adequate lighting in all rooms and hallways.
  • Put away any decorations that are likely to catch your feet or make you trip.


3. Winter blues

You know that feeling when you’re trying to get into the holiday spirit, but you just can’t? It could be winter blues. Seasonal affective disorder (SAD), also known as winter blues, is a form of depression triggered by the changing seasons—and is most commonly experienced in fall and winter.

During the holidays, the combination of seasonal depression, stress from gift shopping and family gatherings, and a lack of sunlight can make us feel sad, anxious, or just plain blue—making us more at risk.

Prevention tips:

  • Get as much sunlight as possible.
  • Stay in touch with family and friends.
  • Keep yourself warm.


4. Travel mishaps

With all the traveling that people do, it’s easy to make mistakes or get stuck in a jam. And it’s not just because of the crowds—it’s also because of the weather. Cold weather and snow can cause accidents, delays, and other problems that can throw off your holiday travel plans.

Prevention tips:

  • Make sure your car is in good shape before leaving.
  • Do your research and know where exactly you’re going and what time you need to be there.
  • Bring a travel buddy.


5. Heart attacks

Research found that deaths from heart attacks increase by up to 4.2% during the Christmas period. This is primarily due to the high-stress levels that people experience during this time of year, which makes them more prone to panic attacks and anxiety. Not to mention the delay in medical care services during the month. Of course, there’s also that extra glass of wine or mince pie or whatever you’re enjoying over Christmas!

Prevention tips:

  • Try not to stress too much.
  • Set aside time each day for exercise.
  • Don’t overindulge, but also make sure to eat meals.


6. Decorating hazards

Decorating your home for Christmas is such a fun tradition! It’s always exciting to see what you can come up with to make your house feel festive. But there are some hazards that you should be aware of when it comes to decorating your home, especially if you have children or pets.

Prevention tips:

  • Avoid using light strings with bare wires, and keep them away from pets or small children.
  • If you’re hanging lights outside, ensure they’re weatherproof and won’t cause any damage if they fall off the house or tree.
  • Be careful when using ladders or other equipment to hang decorations.


7. Cold or flu

It’s not uncommon to get sick during the holiday season. In fact, it’s common enough that the Center for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) even has a name for it: “holiday sickness.” But have you ever wondered why we get sick during the holidays?

The answer is simple: our bodies are working overtime trying to keep up with all the hustle and bustle of the season—the parties, the gifts, the travel—and they get exhausted. Then when we’re sleeping less than usual (or drinking more!), our immune systems are more vulnerable to illness. Combine that with spending time around lots of other people who may be sick, and it’s easy for us to catch something ourselves!

In addition, winter weather can make people more susceptible to illness because of dry air, which dries out your nose and throat and makes it easier for germs to spread.

Prevention tips:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Don’t share utensils (use separate spoons and forks).
  • Use hand sanitizer often, especially after using public restrooms.


8. Choking

Choking is something that happens all too often during the holidays. Why? Well, it could be because so many people are eating and drinking at once or because they’re overdoing it with sweets. But whatever the reason, we don’t want anyone to go home from Christmas dinner with a sore throat—or worse.

Prevention tips:

  • Chew your food thoroughly before swallowing.
  • Cut up all fruit and vegetables before serving them to children.
  • Minimize distractions while eating.




The holiday season is indeed the most wonderful time of the year. But it can also be a minefield of health risks.

In the end, try to put your health first without missing all the fun of the season. Be aware of the risks and take simple steps to minimize them. If you find yourself overwhelmed, it may be time to take a step back for some downtime.

Explore our website for more health tips, or contact us today for a merrier and healthier month of December.

At Hearty Health, we serve high-quality meals all year round.


On A Diet? Here’s Why It’s Okay to Eat to Your Heart’s Content On Occasion

Feeling guilty after a holiday feast?

You don’t actually have to. Experts show that beyond the shame of overindulgence are several important benefits to your current health goals.

So if you are still beating yourself, fasting and working out to death to compensate for stuffing yourself silly last weekend, you need to simmer down with this article.


What Is Overindulgence?

Have you ever had one of those euphoric moments wherein you allowed yourself to have too much of something enjoyable or pleasurable? That’s exactly overindulgence.

In eating, overindulgence often if not always comes with a backlash. Bloating, reflux and indigestion — these are just three to name a few. 

Studies show, however, that short-term overeating does not result in weight gain, higher fat and body masses compared to doing it in long-term.

Is Overindulgence Helpful In Any Way?

In a few ways, YES! In fact, some health, fitness and wellness experts swear by the power of overindulgence on occasion. 

Here are 3 important benefits of overindulgence to outline a few.


1. It provides a mental break from dieting.

Our motivation to stick on a strict diet can sometimes sink and hit its plateau. Constantly measuring every portion and counting calories can be draining so allowing yourself a little leeway to enjoy the food you love a few times a year can give you space to relax from the pressure and go back to the grindstone with renewed motivation. 


2. It teaches you that progress is not linear.

When we start a new diet or workout routine, we expect everything to be perfect and to go in a smooth straight line without fluctuation. In reality, our progress can pause, move upward and dip downward and it’s perfectly okay.

A one-time overindulgence session can remind us that our best won’t look the same everyday but it won’t mean, in any way, that we are not making progress.


3. It allows you to regress briefly.

Imagine visiting an ex and getting reminded why you left them. Overindulgence works the same. It enables us to dip in our old selves and remember why we started to do things differently.


Whatever your health or body goal is, a heavy meal out of your regular diet portion won’t really hurt in the long run if only done once in a while. Life offers a lot of occasions and let’s face it, we all overdo it with food sometimes. So relax. A one-off cheat day won’t get you out of your track.

6 Egg Recipes to Break Away From Your Average Breakfast

One of the many joys of life are slow mornings with good breakfast. And let’s all agree, there’s nothing quite like egg recipes for a power meal to start off your day.

Eggs are incredibly flavorful and nutritious,  yet affordable and versatile for making the most delicious meals. 

So if you want to break away from your ordinary sunny-side up or omelet, we’ve got you covered.

Here are 6 egg recipes to add more life to your average breakfast or brunch.


1. Breakfast Spuds


If you are looking for something quick and easy, you have to try this  toothsome recipe. It’s a great combo of your favorite breakfast ingredients sweet potatoes, eggs, ham and cheese — scrumptiously put together in one plate. 



2. Festive Egg Scramble


Upgrade your regular scrambled egg the festive and colorful way!

Prepared with sliced mushrooms, red pimientos and bacon, it’s perfect to keep your breakfast meal fun, healthy and hearty



3. Jammy Egg Toasts


Create a special breakfast your family will surely love. Fifteen minutes is all you need to serve this perfectly velvety egg that is something in between boiled and poached. Dip your bread in or munch it in a bite — it’s heavenly either way.



4. Potato Chip Omelet


Craving for a salty snack in your breakfast buffet? We’ve got your back!

Potato chip omelet is prepared by combining eggs, potato chips, parsley and salt in a bowl. If you like, add finely sliced chives or sprinkle it with smoked paprika. 



5. Salmon & Egg Breakfast Wrap


When you want something especially hearty, try this salmon and egg recipe. It is rich in protein plus omega-3s. Bonus points for Greek yogurt in its ingredient list so you make sure you serve only nutrient-dense foods for a power morning meal.



6. Cabbage & Egg


This recipe is too simple yet too good to not be included in the list. 

If you are looking for a light meal to match a lazy morning, this cabbage and egg recipe is exactly what you need. It is easy to prepare and is packed with impressive nutrient content.


Egg is one the few breakfast recipes that we can’t get enough of. It can fit into practically any meal. What’s more, it goes well with almost all other ingredients. There’s no excuse to settle with your average recipe. Experiment and get inspired with these egg breakfast ideas on our list.