One Herb & Plenty Nutrition - Sorrel

Sorrel is known for its multifaceted benefits that support digestion, manages blood pressure, skin health, maintain healthy bones, boosts energy, improves vision, keeps a check on diabetes and cancer, etc. It is known to help treat herpes zoster and aids in detoxification of the body. Sorrel fills the blood with good amount of vitamin A.

 A bushy plant of the perennial herb, sorrel comes in a variety of ranges and can be found in each type of the weather. 

Apart from drinks, sorrel is also used in making medicine, spices, fruits, and jams. The most common and high-value sorrel is the Hibiscus sabdariffa commonly called roselle. 

Sorrel is a nutritional powerhouse that provides a significant amount of micronutrients including vitamin A, vitamin K, which are both fat-soluble vitamins. These are required in maintaining healthy skin, proper bowel function of a person, filled with antioxidants that help in boosting energy and resist infection growth. 

 What Are The Benefits Of Sorrel?

 1. Digestive Health

Sorrel is filled with dietary fibers that help in improving bowel movement. Dietary fiber adds mucus to food and many other digestive enzymes, thereby improving gastrointestinal health.

It helps in reducing conditions like bloating, constipation, cramping, diarrhea, and other digestive issues. It also helps in reducing cholesterol levels thereby protecting the heart and preventing the heart from contracting arteriosclerosis, atherosclerosis, stroke or a heart attack.

 2. Blood Pressure Regulator

Another nutritional content of sorrel is an essential mineral for human health, potassium. Potassium is known to be a natural vasodilator that keeps maintaining the fluid balance of the body. 

 Moderation of potassium in the body reduces stress on the cardiovascular system, thereby relaxing the arteries and treating low blood pressure. It helps in reducing the chances of clotting in the heart and prevents coronary heart diseases and other coronary complications. 

3. Vision Improvement

Vitamin A is abundantly found in sorrel which is connected with improving vision and reduction of macular degeneration. The abundance of vitamin A in the human body prevents the formation of cataracts. Beta carotene a derivative of vitamin A acts as an antioxidant that helps and prevents age-related degradation.

 4. Energy And Blood Circulation

Significant levels of iron are present in sorrel that helps in boosting the formation of red blood cells, thereby preventing anemia. Increased blood circulation boosts oxygen levels in the body thereby increasing energy, hair growth, speeding up the healing process and the like.

 5. Immunity

The most impressive part of having vitamin C added to your daily diet is that your immune system is optimized greatly. Ascorbic acid the other name given to vitamin c helps in stimulating the immune system to produce white blood cells. 

White blood cells act as the first line of defense against infections, pathogenic development, and other foreign invaders. Vitamin c reduces swelling, prevents scurvy, and even has pain relief properties, which is why it is also known as a natural analgesic when consumed in high quantities.

 6. Skin Health

The leaves of sorrel plants can be used in treating skin conditions. If you can get the herb in a good quantity, make the paste out of its leaves. Apply it on areas that have red patches and itching. 

 Sorrel is known to treat dry skin and reduces the number of ringworms. The liquid extracted from fresh leaves can be applied to affected areas to reduce irritation. This is because of the vitamin C and vitamin A content that acts as nutraceuticals and healing ingredients. 

7. Reduces Mucus

The sorrel herb when eaten produces a drying effect on the body. This makes it an excellent herb to reduce mucous production. The presence of tannins in sorrel helps in giving it the drying effect. 

 Tannins are basically polyphenolic and astringent compounds primarily found in plants. If you suffer from the common cold, flu or any diseases that involve an overproduction of mucous, sorrel may help you to get rid of it.

8. Heart Health And Kidney Health

Sorrel belongs to the oxalis family, a family of herbs closely related to boosting heart health. 

The diuretic effect of sorrel takes place when the leaves are dried and consumed. It stimulates urination, thereby cleaning the kidney and removing toxins, saltwater and also a certain amount of fat via urine.

  •  Sorrel contains polyphenolic compounds, anthocyanins, and flavonoids which act as antioxidants. 
  • The abundance of antioxidants helps in destroying the free radicals by eliminating cancer cells before they are able to mutate the healthy ones. 
  • A single cup of sorrel has 164 units of vitamin A, which is capable of fighting bacterias, viruses and help with cell division and lower abdominal pain. 
  • Varicella-zoster virus causes herpes and remains dominant for years. In China, the sorrel herb is used as a topical and oral treatment in treating herpes zoster.

 Like any other herb, sorrel can be stored in the frozen form although a noticeable change in the texture may take place. 

There are different methods to cook sorrel and you can try chopping the herb into sections and placing them with water, or on the ice tray. The taste of sorrel is usually defined to be acidic and tangy, a common substitute can be a lemon zest. 

 The Takeaway

Being a part of the oxalis family, only a moderate amount of oxalic acid is required for the human body. Oxalic acid contributes towards the growth of kidney stones when consumed in excess, and therefore too much of oxalic acid in sorrel should not be consumed. Keep in mind not to use aluminum cookware while cooking sorrel as the oxalic acid has a high chance of reacting and producing an unpleasant taste. 


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