10 powerful reasons you must consume more Afang-Atama and Editan soup
Nigerians have been consuming some indigenous vegetables sometimes for the taste and aroma without finding out their nutritional values.
Researchers have established the fact that vegetables play a vital role in the contribution of essential nutrients to the body which help to maintain a healthy life style and the prevention of diseases. Akwa Ibom and Cross River States in the South South region of Nigeria are two states popularly known as home of soups.
These states are blessed with different varieties of vegetables. Very outstanding among the vegetables consumed as food in this region are afang which is known as “Gnetum africanum”, atama with the botanical name Heinsia crinita comes from the family of “Rubiaceae” and editan known as Lasianthera africana. It belongs to the family of “Icancinaceae”.
These are some of the most powerful reasons you should consume more of Afang-atama and editan soups:
Afang-atama and editan green leafy vegetables generally play a vital role in the food culture of Nigerians and Africans as a whole and afang-atama and editan are the kings among them.
2. Variety of Nutrients:
A great variety of nutrients are found in afang-atama and editan consumed everyday through leaves especially in afang-atama and editan consumed mostly Akwa Ibom and Cross River people.
Vegetables especially afang- atama and editan are the cheapest and most available sources of important nutrients and they contributed substantially to protein, mineral salts, vitamins, fibres, essential amino acids and other nutrients which are usually inadequate supply in daily diets.
4. Aids in contraction of the uterus:
Green leafy vegetables such as afang-atama and editan are used in the diet of postpartum woman during which time it is claimed that they aid the contraction of the uterus.
These vegetables are important commodities for poor households because their prices are relatively affordable compared with other food items. In Akwa Ibom and Cross River States these vegetables are common plants in every home.
6. Nutritional Value
The medicinal value of these plants lies in some chemical substances that produce a definite physiological action on the body. The most important features of these fresh vegetables is that they contain the nutritional value of economic importance and they are source of food.
7. Reduce Risk of Stroke, Cancer:
Eating a diet rich in vegetables such as afang-atama and editan may reduce risk for stroke, cancer, heart disease and type-2-diabetes.
8. Treatment of Skin Rashes
The atama leave extract is used in the treatment of skin rashes and the leaves for unbilical hernia. The Leave juice is also use in the treatment of various other gastro intestinal disorders according to research.
9. High Dietary Fiber Content:
Afang-atama and editan leaves has high dietary fiber content, which aids weight loss and increases metabolism. It also improves digestion, acts as a laxative, and prevents constipation.
10. Good Cholesterol:
These leaves help with good cholesterol, which in turn replaces the bad cholesterol. Afang in particularly also manages blood sugar and blood pressure. A well cooked afang soup is known to increase Libido.
In 2016, The Daily Sun described Akwa Cross as the home of food, making a statement in dishes. There are lots of things that stand Efik out in terms of culture. One of them is their food. They serve some of the most delicious traditional delicacies in Africa. You may have heard that “if you eat their food, you would forget where you are from and you won’t return home.”
Take this from the managing director, Axari Hotels and Suites, Calabar: “We have a very rich cuisine, which I think every Nigerian may have heard about. At the last count, we could point at 17 different types of soup that Efik people have in their repertoire.”
Edikang-Ikong is regarded as the king of Calabar-Uyo-soups, and it is popular across the country. Afang, afia efere (white soup), editan, ekpang-nkwukwo, atama, ukwoho edidot and ukang soup are also popular.
Perhaps that is why ‘Calabar kitchens’ are popular across the country and beyond. It is even said that no man tastes the Calabar woman’s food and remains the same. Sometimes, the man acts as if he has been charmed. Most of the Efik-Ibibio cultural dishes contain sea ingredients because their settlements are on riverbanks and creeks.