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Healthiest Vegetables To Eat: Malabar Spinach, Sessile Joyweed and Roselle Leaves

Healthiest Vegetables To Eat: Malabar Spinach, Sessile Joyweed and Roselle Leaves

There will never be an end to the leafy greens you can eat if you shift your attention to those eaten by the natives of other lands. A visit to a little India will open your eyes to the healthy greens the Indians have been eating to stay healthy and wise.

Indian Malabar Spinach

It was the tiny deep maroon flowers peeping from the Indian Malabar spinach leaves that caught my eye while searching through an array of leafy greens to find some really outstanding ones.

Back home I found a picture of Kalanchoe and the color of the flower clusters and leaves somehow bore a vague resemblance to those of that Indian veggie. But while the Kalanchoe is better known for its large range of medicinal plant chemicals, the Indian spinach truly shines nutritionally with its rich store of vitamins and minerals.

Moreover, the Indian Malabar spinach looks nothing like its local counterpart with big fleshy leaves, red stems and pinkish flowers despite the two are from the same Basellaceae family; for sure, it does prefer borrowing the look of its Crassulaceae neighbor.

A survival plant champion, the Malabar spinach can adapt genetically to harsh environments; it does not need a green thumb or a farmer’s devotion to grow. When most of the grass has turned yellow, my neighbor’s Indian spinach is spiraling its way to the top of a bamboo post. Perhaps it is a good idea to eat more of this veggie and tap its reservoir of adaptive mechanisms for your own use!

Sessile Joyweed (Ponnanganni Keerai)

To treat a fever without medicine, you can use the whole sessile joyweed plant with obovate leaves and tender stems. A carotenoid remedy for eye problems, it is also a great natural skin and hair beautifier, giving you a glow all over, being low in fats and calories, and high in minerals, vitamins and antioxidants.

It is said if you eat this incredibly nutritious aquatic veggie daily for 48 days, it will heal the body of all deficiencies, including those of the liver and spleen. So making this joyweed a part of your diet twice weekly is recommended for good health.
Besides, you can add some sessile vegetables to pancakes or lentil soup to give it more fiber.

Roselle leaves (Pulicha Keerai)

The Ribena brand has certainly lent its fame to the roselle plant whose calyces serve as a perfect substitute for the blackcurrant. An antidote to body heat, the leaves will keep many a heat stroke and sunstroke away. Rich in Vitamin C content, roselle greens is simply a great natural way to boost your immune system.

Originating from Africa, it has been listed as one of the neglected leafy vegetable crops of that continent by the International Plant Genetic Resources Institute (IPGRI). However, saved by its large global range and introduced distribution, it is called different names by different countries, thus the sobriquets, ‘Indian sorrel’ and ‘saan choy’ which is Chinese for ‘slimy vegetable’.

Though the red stems look like those of the tapioca plant, the mucilaginous leaves impart a sour taste to a dish, quite unlike the bitter tapioca leaves. A simple stir-fry of roselle greens with garlic and onions is refreshing nourishment for the taste buds and soul.

You might soon have to take it easy on leafy greens as more and more green veggies are making themselves known.