Amazing health benefits of Saluyot!

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Saluyot uses, health benefits, side effects, warnings.

Saluyot is a herbaceous vine that is a popular leafy vegetable in Southeast Asia. It is a good source of iron, vitamins B & C and calcium. Medicinal uses include treatment of gestational diabetes in pregnant women.

Scientific Name: Corchorus olitorius

Also knows as:
Saluyot (Tagalog), Jute, Jew’s mallow, Egyptian spinach,  jute mallow, bush okra, West African sorrel (En), Chang shouo huang ma (Ch). Krinkrin (Fr)

Saluyot (Corchorus olitorius) is an edible leafy vegetable that is a member of the  genus Corchorus, classified under the subfamily Grewioideae of the family Malvaceae. Saluyot is widely found in tropical and subtropical areas from Asia to Africa valued as food and for its strong fiber. Saluyot has long been used as food staple since ancient times by Jewish people and Egyptians hence derived its English names Jew’s mallow and Egyptian spinach.

Saluyot leaves are very nutritious, it is rich in calcium, iron, protein, vitamin A, C and E, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, folate, and dietary fibers.  Saluyot is usually cooked as stew, forming a thick slimy syrup similar in consistency to okra usually taken with rice or other starchy staple.

Saluyot can almost grow anywhere in the Philippines. Saluyot is a hardy plant that is resistant to pests and requires little care. It can be found in the wild as it can also be grown in a farm.

Saluyot plants are tall, reaching 2-4 meters in height, having only a few side branches. Saluyot  leaves are alternate, simple, lanceolate, about 5-15 cm in length tapering to a pointed tip and has finely serrated margin. Saluyot flowers are yellow about 2-3 cm wide with five petals. The fruit is capsule like with plenty of small seeds inside.

Saluyot | Corchorus olitorius Medicinal Uses

Saluyot in Traditional and Folkloric Medicine

  • Saluyot being rich in vitamins and minerals generally promotes good health and well-being.
  • Saluyot being rich in vitamin A can provide health benefits for good eyesight.
  • Saluyot contains vitamin E and other antioxidants. It is said to prevent wrinkles and promote youthful looking skin.
  • Saluyot is used to treat inflammation and pain such as arthritis , headache, stomach ache and others.
  • Saluyot being rich in fiber helps to control blood pressure, cholesterol build-up, diabetes and prevents heart disease.
  • Saluyot leaves are rich in fiber and its slimy consistency when cooked is used to treat various digestive problems such as diarrhea, stomach ache, dysentery, constipation and ulcers.
  • It is also claimed that together with other herbs it can cure cancer.

Science Based Health Benefits from Saluyot | Corchorus olitorius Herbal Medicine

Saluyot Mechanism of action in disease treatment and prevention

Phenolic antioxidants from the leaves of Corchorus olitorius L.

Corchorus olitorius leaves contains six phenolic antioxidative compounds The contents of these phenolic compounds, were determined, and their antioxidative activities were measured using the radical generator-initiated peroxidation of linoleic acid. The results obtained showed that 5-caffeoylquinic acid was a predominant phenolic antioxidant in Corchorus olitorius leaves. Source: Journal of Agricultural Food Chemistry. (1999 Oct)

Gastroprotective effects of Corchorus olitorius (Saluyot leaf extract)

A study aimed to evaluate the gastroprotective effect of an ethanolic extract of Corchorus olitorius against ethanol-induced gastric ulcers in adult Sprague Dawley rats showed that sambong extract posses gastroprotection in the experimental groups and medical benefits were comparable to that of the reference control medicine omeprazole. Source: Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology. (2013 Aug)

Corchorus olitorius (jute) extract induced cytotoxicity and genotoxicity on human multiple myeloma cells (ARH-77).

A study investigated cytotoxic and genotoxic effects of leaf extracts (LE) and seed extracts (SE) of the Corchorus olitorius on the multiple myeloma-derived ARH-77 cells. Results have showed that both Saluyt leaf and seed extracts exerted cytotoxic effects on cells and the results of the comet assay revealed that the extracts induced genotoxic damage on ARH-77 cells. The leaf and seed extract treatments indicated that genotoxic damage significantly increased with increasing concentrations at relevant cytotoxic concentrations. Source: Pharmaceutical Biology. (2013 Jun)

Polyphenolic compounds with anti-tumour potential from Corchorus olitorius (L.)

Chromatographic fractionation of the methanolic extract of Corchorus olitorius (L.) yielded two polyphenolic compounds. The compounds when tested possess mild cytotoxic activity which was significant against HeLa cells at ⩾800μM. The plant Corchorus olitorius therefore represents a potential source of natural ‘lead’ compounds with anti-tumour potential. Source: Bioorganic & Medicinal Chemistry Letters. (2016 Aug)

Health Benefits of Saluyot for Diabetes

A study conducted in Department of Biochemistry and Nutrition, India reported that by  administering powdered Saluyot supplements to pregnant rats, both the mother and the fetus exhibited an increased resistance in diabetes induced oxidative stress versus a control group. The results suggest that Saluyot supplementation during pregnancy may provide beneficial effects against diabetes induced oxidative stress both for the mother and the fetus. (Journal of Diabetes. March 2013: Dietary supplementation with Ipomoea aquatica attenuates maternal and fetal oxidative stress in streptozotocin-diabetic rats)

Anti-inflammatory and antipyretic properties of Corchorus olitorius aqueous extract

A study was conducted to determine the antipyretic and anti-inflammatory effects of Corchorus olitorius root in Wistar rats. The results showed that Corchorus olitorius root extract (p<0.05) decreased the elevated temperature and inflammation compared with the control group.This study suggests that Corchorus olitorius root is another good source of phytomedicine that can be used effectively to treat inflammation and pyrexia that accompany some diseases. Source: Journal of Basic and Clinical Physiology and Pharmacology. (2015 Jul)

Helath Benefits of Saluyot Against Liver Disease

The Department of Molecular Medicine, University of Malaya in Malaysia conducted a study on the protective action of Saluyot against thioacetamide-induced hepatotoxicity in rats to determine if Saluyot can indeed help treat jaundice. An ethanol extract of Saluyot has been administered to rats subjected to liver damage by thioacetamide. Results had shown that the rats when compared to a control group showed resistance against liver lesions, cell necrosis and inflammation.

The study further suggests that the protective effect of Saluyot extract  in chemical-induced liver damage might be contributed to its modulation on detoxification enzymes and its antioxidant and free radical scavenger effects. Moreover, it confirms a scientific basis for the traditional use of Saluyot for the treatment of liver disorders. (Molecules. 2012: Ipomoea aquatica extract shows protective action against thioacetamide-induced hepatotoxicity)

Saluyot Preparations, Usage and Side Effects

Saluyot Preparation and Usage

Saluyot tea preparation:

  • Gather fresh Saluyot leaves then air dry
  • boil half a cup of dried saluyot leaves to a liter of water
  • let it seep for 10 minutes
  • remove from heat
  • Strain solids
  • drink while warm 3 – 4 glasses a day for best results.

Saluyot being an annual plant can be grown in your backyard or can be bought in your local wet market by the  bunch.
Saluyot leaves may be dried and stored for later use.

Saluyot leaves are dried and boiled to make a medicinal tea.

Saluyot leaves being a vegetable can be thrown in as an ingredient in making stews or soups  and other viands.  The Ilocanos are known to prepare delicious dishes with saluyot, the most popular are dinengdeng and bulang-bulang. Some Ilocanos even attributes their youthful looks and longevity in saluyot rich diet.


Saluyot Warnings and Side Effects

  • Saluyot is an edible vegetable considered safe for human and animal consumption.
  • In some cultures, saluyot is used as antifertility concoction, although this is not yet scientifically verifified. Studies have shown that saluyot contains flavanoids has antifertility activity. (Indian Journal of Experimental biology (2003,Jun), “Anti-steroidogenic activity of Corchorus olitorius Linn.in mouse ovary)

Pregnancy and breast-feeding:
Saluyot is considered safe for pregnant women and breast feeding mothers when taken in food.

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