- 13 Impressive Health Benefits of Sorrel
- Bottom Line
Sorrel is an annual, bushy plant and a perennial herb that comes from the Buckwheat family. It breeds in a varied range of climates, which is why it can be found in each type of weather, in different regions of the world. It is also used to make a popular drink known as Karkade, which comes from Egypt and is well-known for its health benefits. Different parts of this plant are used to make soups, spices, sauces, medicines, and jams. The most common type of sorrel that has the highest value is Hibiscus Sabdariffa, commonly referred to as Roselle, Red Sorrel, or Jamaican Sorrell.
Hibiscus is typically grown to add flavor to food due to its sharp taste, but it packs several advantages like improving vision, regulating blood pressure, boosting heart health, etc. The potent tangy taste of the plant comes from Oxalic Acid, which is similar to kiwis or wild strawberries. Oxalic acid is known to be toxic if taken in large doses but is totally safe if consumed in small, controlled portions.
Sorrel packs high amounts of dietary fiber and is loaded with vitamin C, as well as vitamins A, B-6, Potassium, Calcium, and Magnesium. It is seen as an excellent anti-microbe and antioxidant, making it the primary component of the popular Essiac tea. In terms of advantageous organic ingredients, it consists of flavonoids, polyphenolic acids, and anthocyanins. All these elements present in the Sorrel plant make it surprisingly beneficial for an individual’s health.
13 Impressive Health Benefits of Sorrel
1. Helps with Digestion
The high level of fiber present in the majority of sorrel types means that your digestive health can be enhanced by incorporating these plants into your salads and soups. Dietary fiber adds substance to food as it goes through the digestive system, enhancing your gastrointestinal health and minimizing conditions such as bloating, diarrhea, constipation, and cramping, along with gastrointestinal problems. Dietary fiber can also help decrease overall cholesterol in the body, thus reducing the risk of atherosclerosis, strokes, and heart attacks.
2. Manages Blood Pressure
Sorrel contains a high potassium level (a single cup contains 15% of your daily recommended intake), which is a key mineral for a healthy human body. Potassium is a vasodilator, and also crucial in regulating fluid balance throughout your entire body. This implies that potassium minimizes strain on the cardiovascular system by soothing the arteries and blood vessels. Lowered blood pressure minimizes the risk of dangerous or even fatal blood clotting and excess stress on the heart that can result in coronary disease and other cardiovascular complications.
3. Improves Vision
Vitamin A is a vital vitamin found in sorrel and has been closely linked with the betterment of eyesight and a reduction of cataracts and macular degeneration. Beta-carotene, an offshoot of vitamin A, acts likes an antioxidant, and when combined with other key antioxidant elements present in the body, it can significantly enhance your eye health and prevent age-related issues.
4. Energy and Circulation
The high levels of iron in sorrel mean that it increases the red blood cell production and prevents iron deficiency (anemia). Improved circulation increases oxygen levels in the important organs throughout the body, sparks hair growth, increase levels of energy, and quicken the healing process (in combination with the protein content found in sorrel).
5. Increases Immunity
The presence of vitamin C in sorrel is pretty impressive (one cup of the plant has 106% of your daily suggested intake), meaning that your immune system can be optimized. Vitamin C also referred to as ascorbic acid, increases the production of white blood cells and stimulates the immune system, which is the first line of protection against pathogens and other free radicals present in the body.
6. Improves Skin Health
Sorrel leaf is packed with vitamin C, which is extremely important in protecting our skin against wrinkles and tightening it. In addition to that, sorrel leaves are excellent for relieving itch and ringworms owing to their anti-allergic and anti-microbial properties.
7. Improves Kidney Health
Red sorrel and sheep sorrel have found to be beneficial in a study published by Washington University, in Saint Louis. The study confirms that the leaves have the ability to cure acute diseases such as kidney stones and clean out the urinary tract if the patient consumes the leaves’ juice regularly. They also help prevent the formation of kidney stones, and their growth
8. Promotes Healthy Bones
A single cup of sorrel packs 123 mg of calcium. Adequate amounts of calcium in your diet help keep your teeth and bones strong and healthy. Calcium is also very important for transmitting messages from your brain to the rest of the body. A calcium deficiency increases the risk of abnormal heartbeat and osteoporosis, so make sure to stock up on sorrel and consume it in controlled portions.
9. Managing Diabetes
Sorrel comes from the oxalis family, which has been closely linked with improving the conditions of diabetes and enhancing heart health. This is probably due to the presence of organic elements and anthocyanin in sorrel, which interact with practically every bodily system to enhance their health and functionality.
10. Prevents Cancer
Even though research is ongoing regarding the antioxidant components of sorrel, there is still a good amount of evidence present suggesting that the plant indeed contains flavonoids, polyphenolic compounds, and anthocyanins, all of which act as antioxidants. The abundance of antioxidants is pretty effective at fighting free radicals and eliminating them before they can mutate healthy cells into cancerous ones.
11. Rich In Vitamin A
One cup of sorrel has 164 IU of vitamin A, which is critical for your body’s optimum functions. Vitamin A helps fight bacteria and viruses that enter your body and make you sick. Moreover, it helps with reproduction, cell division and fights free radicals.
12. Treats Herpes Zoster
Varicella-zoster virus is a stubborn virus that causes herpes zoster that can remain dominant for years. The Chinese used red sorrel as a topical and oral treatment for herpes zoster and was found to be very effective.
13. Detoxifies the Body
Our bodies need to be detoxified once in a while in order to keep it functioning properly. Herbal teas are good detoxifiers, but so is red sorrel. Red sorrel plays a key role in metabolism and detoxification of xenobiotic, and its juice is known for flushing the body out of toxins.
All in all, there is no question that incorporating sorrel into your daily diet can help you maintain your physical as well as your psychological health. This is especially critical for people who are suffering from diabetes and anemia.