Folia Medica 63(1): 51-58, doi: 10.3897/folmed.63.e51944
Superiority of Purple Okra (Abelmoschus esculentus) to Green Okra in Insulin Resistance and Pancreatic β Cell Improvement in Diabetic Rats
expand article infoNurina Tyagita, Endang Mahati§, Azizah Hikma Safitri
‡ Universitas Islam Sultan Agung, Semarang, Indonesia§ Universitas Diponegoro, Semarang, Indonesia
Open Access

Introduction: Antidiabetic medicinal plants are increasingly used in the treatment of diabetes as they are generally assumed to pro-duce minimal side effects. Okra is a quercetin-containing plant which can induce pancreas regeneration and has antidiabetic effect. There has been a lot of research that demonstrate that purple okra contains more quercetin than green okra.

Aim: To demonstrate the advantages of purple okra over green okra on the diabetic markers improvement in diabetic rats.

Materials and methods: Fifteen male 2-month-old Wistar rats were injected intraperitoneally with 65 mg streptozotocin and 110 mg niacinamide. Their blood glucose levels were measured three days after the injection. The induction of diabetes was deemed  successful if the glucose level of the rats got higher than 250 mg/dL, and then such rats were considered diabetic. The diabetic rats were divided into three groups: an acarbose group, a purple okra powder group, and a green okra powder group. The latter two were given, respectively, purple and green okra powder for 28 days. Blood serum was taken to examine the fasting blood glucose, insulin, HOMA-B and GLUT-4 levels. Pancreas was examined histologically for damage using hematoxylin eosin staining. 

Results: Fasting blood glucose, insulin, HOMA-B, and GLUT-4 levels of diabetic rats that received purple okra powder (p<0.05) were better than those of the rats that received green okra powder. The least damage (p<0.05) to pancreatic beta cells was found in the purple okra powder group.

Conclusions: Purple okra is superior to green okra in terms of improving the diabetic markers of rats.

purple okra, pancreatic beta cell, blood glucose, HOMA-B, insulin