Health experts on Monday said eating Rosella (Hibiscus Sabdariffa), popularly known as Zobo leaves in Nigeria, could aid digestive process and stimulate bowel movement if properly consumed. Olusola Malomo, a medical staff member at Massey Hospital, Lagos, and Mary Joseph, a nutritionist, told the News Agency of Nigeria of the finding in Lagos.
They also said the zoo leaf could help to improve blood circulation when consumed moderately.
According to them, Rosella, which originated from West Africa, has rich nutritional values, several health benefits and positive pharmacological effects on human bodies when taken appropriately.
Malomo said the leaves, when consumed appropriately, could improve blood circulation, and reduce blood thickness and viscosity.
He said: “The Zobo leaf has two varieties: the wine coloured and the green coloured.
“The green-type can be eaten as a side dish or salad, while the wine type can be used for drinks, jelly, sauces and beverages.
“It contains water, protein, fat, fibre, ash, calcium, phosphorus, iron, carotene, thiamine, riboflavin, niacin and ascorbic acid.
“Its intake can help the digestive process and stimulate bowel movement; it also prevents inflammation of the urinary tract.
“It filters toxins and prevents Vitamin C deficiency, it lowers blood pressure and controls cholesterol.”
Malomo advised people to take more of natural foods or juices rather than processed foods.
Also, Joseph said the leaves had enough complete pharmacological effect.
She said: “It can prevent stomach cancer and leukemia.
“It can also prevent bacteria and can be used to treat mouth sore because of its high Vitamin C content.
“It helps to prevent premature aging.”
Joseph added that it could help prevent bone calcification and slow down menopause.
The nutritionist, however, advised women who were trying to get pregnant to avoid taking it in excess, saying it could interfere with the hormone that prepared the uterus for pregnancy.
“High dosage can also lead to kidney damage,” she said.