Mr Olugbenga Jagun, a nutritionist at the University of Abuja Teaching Hospital ( UATH), Gwagalada, has said that jute leaf known as ‘Ewedu’ can prevent cancer and coronary diseases due to its richness in antioxidants and phytochemicals.
Jagun said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Saturday in Abuja. The jute leaf is one of the common African leafy vegetables cultivated in gardens and farms for home use. He said that “Dieticians called it a pharmacy on your plate due to the numerous nutritional-health benefits.
Cancer is a group of diseases involving abnormal cell growth with the potential to invade or spread to other parts of the body. These contrast with benign tumors, which do not spread.
Possible signs and symptoms include a lump, abnormal bleeding, prolonged cough, unexplained weight loss and a change in bowel movements. While these symptoms may indicate cancer, they can also have other causes. Over 100 types of cancers affect humans.
Tobacco use is the cause of about 22% of cancer deaths. Another 10% are due to obesity, poor diet, lack of physical activity or excessive drinking of alcohol. Other factors include certain infections, exposure to ionizing radiation and environmental pollutants.
In the developing world, 15% of cancers are due to infections such as Helicobacter pylori, hepatitis B, hepatitis C, human papillomavirus infection, Epstein–Barr virus and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). These factors act, at least partly, by changing the genes of a cell.
Typically, many genetic changes are required before cancer develops. Approximately 5–10% of cancers are due to inherited genetic defects from a person’s parents.
Cancer can be detected by certain signs and symptoms or screening tests. It is then typically further investigated by medical imaging and confirmed by biopsy
“It is a good source of vitamins and mineral elements such as calcium, potassium, iron, vitamin C, B, K, Folic acid.
“These vitamins and mineral elements have a great therapeutic effects on our body such as the lowering of blood pressure and neural tube defects in pregnant women.
“It is rich in both essential and non-essential amino acid, example is Lysine. ” He added that it also helps to prevent constipation due to the presence of fibre in it, making it a natural laxative. Jagun also said the plant could be ideal in the case of obesity because of its almost no-fat and low cholesterol level.
“The leaf is a good anti-anemic which prevents anaemia due to high iron content and also facilitates the production of red blood cells.
“Excellent and appropriate food for the elderly because of its calcifying action, that is the supply of calcium,” he said. Jagun advised Nigerians to consume the leaf due to its numerous health benefits.
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