Protein is one of the essential nutrients required for human body metabolism. The main function and health benefits of protein are including maintaining the health of muscle mass and the build of muscle tones. Unfortunately, in some countries, protein deficiencies are quite common cases and the same thing applies for vegetarians as well.
Oil Bean Seeds as Excellent Protein Source
Speaking of protein sources, animal products like meat, eggs and dairy products are excellent and probably the best source of protein but in some countries like in Africa, finding those products are almost impossible. Fortunately, there is one excellent source of protein and becomes one of the best sources for the African; it is oil bean seed. It is an excellent option of protein for vegetarian as well, though outside Africa, this kind of bean is quite hard to find but as the replacement, the oil bean seed is also excellent for salads.
Nutritional Values of Oil Bean Seed
In Africa, oil bean seed is commonly fermented and prepared as snack called ugba because the Africans know well about the nutritional values of this plant which has scientific name Pentaclethra macrophylla. This plant has been cultivated since 1937 and has been used as part of traditional culinary and also folk medicine. Not only protein, oil bean seed is also packed with some essential vitamins and minerals. To learn about the health benefits of oil bean seed, the list below will tell you more about the amazing thing of this plant.
- Excellent to Lower the Cholesterol Level
Speaking of foods that lower cholesterol level, bean is in the top of the list. In other words, oil bean seed is also excellent to help managing the level of cholesterol. Not only that, oil bean seed is also containing saponins, an active compound that is medically used to reduce the plasma cholesterol. However, there is one important thing to note that in large dosage, saponins could be toxic.
- May Helpful to Reduce the Risk of Cancer
There are some specific studies have been conducted to prove that oil bean seed is actually helpful to reduce the risk and how to prevent cancers. A study conducted in Nigeria involving the locals who are regularly consuming the fermented oil bean seeds are likely experiencing the reduction of cancer risk compared to those who didn’t consume the fermented oil bean seeds.
- Reduces the Risk of Cataract
Cataract is one of the degenerative conditions caused by the deficiencies of certain vitamins and minerals. It becomes one of the common vision or eye diseases. There are some specific studies conducted to find out the connection of oil bean seed with the reduction of risk of cataract. Those studies revealed that oil bean seed contains some active compounds that could help preventing cataract.
- Low-Cost Protein Source
As mentioned above, in some countries like Africa, finding the source of protein from animal products is not easy. That is why oil bean seed becomes the low cost protein source that could be easily accessed by the locals. Oil bean seed is not only rich of protein but also packed with minerals such as iron, manganese and potassium which are excellent to optimize the production of hemoglobin.
- Home Remedy to Insect Bites
One of the amazing compounds found in oil bean seed is the anti-inflammatory properties. The locals in African have been using oil bean seed in the form of ointment to treat insect bites. Moreover, the ointment is also excellent to treat itches, cuts and wound by preventing the further infection because oil bean seed also contains potent anti-bacterial agents to fight bacteria.
- Solution to Insomnia
Insomnia is quite common condition but untreated insomnia could lead to more serious health conditions such as symptoms of depression, stress, obesity and so on due to the lack of sleep and the lack of energy. Insomnia is not only affecting the sleeping habit but also the regular daily activities. Consuming oil bean seed along with honey could help this condition naturally.
- Contains Anti-Bacterial Agents
There are two active compounds found in oil bean seed that are excellently acting as anti-bacterial agents; they are saponins and alkaloids. The combinations of those active compounds could be used to fight some bacteria such as Bacillus cereus and even eliminate the Klebsiella pneumonia. However, there is one important thing to note, as mentioned above, is too much saponins could be really toxic.
- Treats Infertility
The Africans have been using oil bean seed as remedy to treat infertility as well. Though perhaps further studies regarding this matter is strongly required but there are a lot of people have claimed the excellent effect of oil bean seed in improving fertility.
- Good for Cardiovascular Health
It is not easy to deal with the symptoms of high blood pressure caused by certain factors such as cholesterol and high blood pressure. It is important to find something that could prevent conditions like heart attack or stroke before it is too late. The low fat level of oil bean seed is the reason why this bean is excellent for cardiovascular health. Moreover, oil bean seed is also packed with essential vitamins and minerals, including potassium. One of the health benefits of potassium is to promote the heart health.
- Excellent to Treat Diarrhea
Today, there are a lot of ways of how to prevent diarrhea but still the natural solution is the one that is highly recommended. As mentioned above, oil bean seed contains some potent compounds to tackle bacteria and prevent the infection. Diarrhea is stomach condition caused by excessive growth of ‘bad’ bacteria. Oil been seed has been used traditionally to deal with this conditions since ancient time.
- Maintains the Ideal Weight
Protein is essential for human body metabolism but too much protein could lead to weight gain as well. However, oil bean seed is an excellent source of protein for those who are currently in weight loss diet. Moreover, oil bean seed is super low in fat and make this bean is excellent option for salad.
- Treats Stomach Disorders
There are a lot of factors that could cause stomach disorders but intestine is where all foods are processed. So, in other words, it is not easy to control what stuffs that are entering the intestine. However, oil bean seed contains anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial agents that could help treating stomach disorders naturally.
Actually there are more health benefits of oil bean seed aside from that have been mentioned above. Not only the seeds; the leaves are also excellent home remedy to treat fever while the barks could be served as herbal medicine to treat conditions caused by parasitic worm. Commercially, the oil bean seed is also used to produce soaps and candles.