The Common Cold Remedies Lady Fingers

Lady’s fingers are often used as a home remedy for the common cold. An excellent source of vitamin C and throat-soothing mucilage, lady’s fingers play a role in many alternative cold remedies.

Lady’s Finger Plant Origins

The lady’s fingers plant is better known in the United States as okra, but it originated halfway around the world in Ethiopia. From Ethiopia, lady’s fingers spread to the Mediterranean, Asia and the rest of Africa, eventually arriving in the Americas. The scientific name of the lady’s fingers plant is hibiscus esculentus.

The lady’s fingers plant produces a small green pod, tapered to a point at one end with ridges running down the length of the pod. While okra has many culinary uses, it is most often used to thicken soups.

Lady’s Fingers Alternative Home Remedies

It’s not surprising that the lady’s finger plant is used as a home remedy for the common cold. Lady’s fingers are a good source of:

  • B vitamins
  • folic acid
  • magnesium
  • manganese
  • potassium
  • vitamin C.

Increasing vitamin C intake is well-known as a common cold home remedy.

While extra vitamin C is welcome when fighting the common cold, it’s not the reason the lady’s fingers plant is used in alternative cold remedies. The secret to a lady’s fingers home remedy is the mucilage, the same substance that makes okra so popular as a soup thickener.

The pods of the lady’s fingers plant are a plentiful source of mucilage (the mucus-like substance that gives okra its characteristic slimy texture). Mucilage soothes irritation while reducing swelling and pain, making lady’s fingers a useful home remedy for the common cold.

Lady’s Fingers Home Remedy for the Common Cold

To use lady’s fingers as a home remedy for the common cold, chop up approximately 100 grams of lady’s fingers and boil in half a liter of water. Take the lady’s fingers off the heat and cool until the liquid can be safely consumed. The mucilage from the lady’s fingers will give the water an oily sheen.

While the lady’s fingers boil, you can take advantage of another common cold home remedy by breathing in the steam. (Be careful not to burn yourself!) While breathing in steam from lady’s fingers doesn’t help as much as drinking the liquid, it does provide some relief.

Drink the lady’s fingers water once or twice a day. You can add some strength to the home remedy by eating the cooked lady’s fingers. After all, a little extra vitamin C can’t hurt when you have a common cold.

Chicken Soup and Lady’s Fingers Plants

Chicken soup has long been touted as a home remedy for the common cold. Chicken soup is easy to digest, and the steam helps soothe nasal passages while loosening mucus.

Chicken soup and lady’s fingers plants are two effective cold remedies that can be combined easily. After all, the lady’s fingers plant is used to thicken soups. Instead of basic chicken soup, why not add some lady’s fingers and make a chicken gumbo? If you add the soothing effect of lady’s fingers mucilage to chicken soup, you can create a powerful alternative cold remedy.

Resources

Foleng-Achunche, C. (n.d.). Okra: Why Eat the Vegetable Formally Known as Hibiscus Esculentus. Retrieved November 21, 2007, from the Sally’s Place Web site: www.sallys-place.com/food/single-articles/okra.htm.

Food Reference (n.d.). Lady’s Fingers. Retrieved November 21, 2007, from the Food Reference Web site: www.foodreference.com/html/fladysfingers.html.

Holistic Online. (nd). Herbal Remedies for Cold. Retrieved November 21, 2007, from the Holistic Online Web site: holisticonline.com/Remedies/Flu/cold_herbal-remedies-for-cold.htm.

Home Remedies for You (n.d.). Common cold. Retrieved November 21, 2007, from the Home Remedies for You Web site: www.home-remedies-for-you.com/remedy/Common-Cold.html.

Philipini, E. (13 November 2007). Old School Cold Remedies. Retrieved November 21, 2007, from the Fitness.com Web site: www.fitness.com/articles/287/old_school_cold_remedies.php.