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10 Health benefits of Jamaican Sorrel

Health benefits of Jamaican sorrel. This bright red plant is used to make our most popular Christmas drink. Known for its great taste, it also has many health benefits.

Health benefits of Jamaican Sorrel

What is Jamaican Sorrel?

I have to make clear what Jamaican sorrel is not before saying what it is, because there is a lot of confusion and it often gets mixed up with other plants.

Don’t confuse Rumex acetosa or Rumex acetosella, which are also called sorrel, with Jamaican sorrel. These are leafy green herbs that resemble spinach and used in salad and other cuisines.

Some people also think that hibiscus is Jamaican sorrel. Although Jamaican sorrel is apart of the hibiscus family it should not be mistaken for hibiscus.

Jamaican Sorrel, all called roselle, is a woody-based subshrub plant that grown about three metres tall.

Jamaican sorrel plant

While various parts of the plant are used in a variety of cooking style around the world, in Jamaican, we use the sorrel flower calyx to make the sorrel drink, consumed mostly at Christmas time. 

Jamaican sorrel and other plants from the hibiscus family are sorted after because of the tremendous amount of health benefits that comes with consuming the plant.

Below are 10 health benefits that are known to drinking Jamaican sorrel drink.

Health Benefits

1. Weight loss 

Studies have suggested that there is an acid in sorrel that helps with weight loss. 

This acid discharge more amylase (an enzyme that helps you digest food) into the digestive system, which breaks down excess starch and sugar (calories) molecules in the body. 

A regular intake of sorrel will improve weight gain.

2. Anti- cancer

The anthocyanin and antioxidant properties found in sorrel are known to prevent the development of cancer cells in the body.

3. Anti – inflammatory

The anti-inflammatory properties found in sorrel helps to neutralise the free radicals in our bodies that cause inflammatory conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis, eczema, stomach, and even cancer.

Sorrel fruit

4. Lower blood pressure

Sorrel has antihypertensive properties that help to lower blood pressure. A research done at a university in Boston found that persons who drink a cup of sorrel daily saw a significant reduction in their blood pressure level in 30 days.

5. Good Vision

There is a high level of vitamin A that contributes to good vision.

6. Prevent heart disease

Sorrel helps to keep the heart healthy and prevents the development of the cardiovascular disease. The powerful antioxidant properties in the sorrel reduce the bad cholesterols in the body that develop into heart disease.

Jamaican Sorrel flower

7. Prevent flu and cold

The sorrel is an ancient African remedy for cold and flu. The high vitamin C in sorrel can help to boost the immune system and help prevent the cold or flu.

8. Relief fever

Because of the ability to cool the body down, sorrel can also reduce the effect of fever.

9. Reduce menstrual cramps

Drinking sorrel tea a few days before your period starts can ease menstruation cramps.

The extract from the leaf has also shown to help with menstruation problems.

10. Relief constipation

Sorrel contains diuretic properties that increase bowel movement, which relieves constipation.

Disclaimer: The author makes no guarantees as to the curative effect of any herb or tonic on this website, and no visitor should attempt to use any of the information herein provided as treatment for any illness, weakness, or disease without first consulting a physician or health care provider. Pregnant women should always consult first with a health care professional before taking any treatment.

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  1. I have been struggling with the flu for 10 days now. Antibiotics. Cough medicines. Peppermint inhalation and still struggling. This morning I opened a bottle of Jamaican sorrel and ginger and mixed with hot water so hopefully this is my answer to getting rid of this malady

    1. Hey Mashllah, sorry to hear you are not well. I hope that the sorrel and ginger mixed work and you are feeling much better

  2. My husband’s birthday is coming up, so I wanted tips on getting health-conscious catering. I didn’t know there’s acid in sorrel that can help with weight loss. My husband is a bit of a health nut, so I’ll make sure to look for catering that has ingredients like sorrel that are delicious and healthy, thanks to this post!

  3. Thankyou so much for this page, it’s really useful. I really want to improve my diet and I’ve been researching fruits and herbs like sorrel. The thing is I can’t find anywhere that sells it… where do you go if you wanna buy sorrel? -A

  4. I never knew that Jamaican food can lower your blood pressure! This would be really beneficial for my grandpa. We should look into having it catered to our family reunion.

      1. I don’t, we just call is sorrel in Trinidad and in all the other Caribbean countries it’s known as just sorrel, nothing about Jamaica.

    1. I found that using castor oil on a Q-tip rubbed on the inside opening of your nose a few times a day for several days gives you your sense of taste and smell back. I was sick and tried it. It works! I’m not sure if I had c-vid or not, because I treat myself more than going to the doctors for immunity issues. I know it’s way late, but you can use this as a reference next time.

  5. Hi you need to do a spell check when doing such articles . Apart means separate from you should have written ( a part) they are two separate words with different means .

  6. Wonderful description! I have read articles stating that this plant is indigenous to the Americas. I did an infusion with it for homework tonight. This is the source of “red kool-aid” meaning this is what Europeans found the aboriginals drinking as they arrived to conquer. It has also been noted that Indigenous brown people from America were sent to West Africa and took their native plants, to now be considered originating from there. Thank you for this write-up! Saved and will be referred to in the future!

  7. Sorrel tastes great. I was unaware of all of the medicinal benefits as well. Can the Jamaican Sorrel drink be made without so much sugar? That would be a benefit to those who suffer from diabetes.

    1. I make it with cloves and ginger and don’t add sugar. Bad thing her is that I have no measurements of the amount of fresh ginger and cloves but will guestimate for you. 1 pack of dried sorrel, about half a palm of fresh ginger (grated on the big side of a grater) and 1 1/2 heaping tablespoons of cloves added to about 1 gallon of boiled water. Don’t boil the water anymore after adding the sorrel, ginger and cloves. Let it sit and cool and then drain and refrigerate.

  8. I love Sorrel I found some at a marketplace and made the drink and also made some with white rum (YUM). Having a drink right now, so glad I found it

  9. It caught my attention when you informed us about the Jamaican sorrel drink and how it promotes weight loss since the acid in sorrel discharges amylase, which helps us digest food better by breaking down excess starch and sugar. Speaking of Jamaican food, my friend said she wanted to try it recently, so we plan to do so when we meet up this weekend. I’ll keep this in mind while I look for where we can get Jamaican food takeout nearby.

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