Vernonia leaves (Ndole, bitter leaves)
Vernonia leaf (Vernonia amygdalina), also called Ndolé in Cameroon, Grawa in Amharic, Ewuro in Yoruba, Etidot in Ibibio, onugbu in Igbo, Ityuna in Tiv, Oriwo in Edo, chusar-doki in Hausa, Mululuza in Luganda, labwori in acholi and olusia in Luo. This plant is also called “kongo bololo” in Congo.
Present in the majority of tropical African countries, common vernonia is grown as a vegetable in Benin, Cameroon, Gabon, Nigeria and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
How to eat vernonia leaves (Bitter leaves)
Very appreciated in West and Central Africa, the leaves of Vernonia amygdalina are variously consumed. In Nigeria, the chopped leaves and gills are cooked in the form of soup. In Cameroon, the chopped and blanched leaves are prepared in a famous dish, the Ndolé, with peanuts, meat or shrimps. The plant is sometimes used as a quickset hedge, in integrated pest management, especially against fungi, or in traditional medicine. This honey plant also replaces hops in beer production. With these various uses, common vernacular leaves have a high commercial value.
The challenge of the year is to drink bitter leaf juice. It is common to use vernonia leaves to help expel certain diseases. Vernonia leaf water may be the most popular product made from this herb. It takes a brave soul to endure the bitter taste of the challenge. The juice makes your body feel good afterwards.
In terms of health, what does the vernonia leaf do?
In traditional medicine, leaf decoctions are used to treat intestinal worms, fever, malaria, diarrhea, dysentery, hepatitis, cough and infertility. They are also used as a laxative, a remedy for scabies, wounds, headaches and stomach aches. As for root extracts, they are applied to treat malaria and gastrointestinal diseases.
Here are some examples of the health benefits of drinking vernonia leaf water.
The bitter water from the leaves can help women maintain their youthfulness longer.
It contains ß-carotene which has a positive effect on female hormones.
The product is useful in the treatment of ringworm and other types of skin infections. It is beneficial to drink vernonia leaf water to boost the appetite. In addition, bitter leaf water helps to stop coughing.
Precaution to be taken with vernonia leaves …
It is very important to rinse these leaves well before human consumption. Rinse at least 4 times. Can be boiled with rock salt before cooking.
Available at Afritibi market