Have you ever heard of Momoricacharantia? OR Wait, What about karela? Now you don’t get scared. These are just a couple of other names for Bitter Gourd which is also known as bitter melon or bitter squash in English. First thing that comes to my mind seeing it is the bitterness in the name. They are dark or light green in color depending on the region where they are grown. Though they taste very bitter they are filled with many beneficial antioxidants and essential vitamins. Bitter Gourd can be consumed in many ways like drinking its juice pickle or using them in recipes. Bitter Gourd health benefits and nutritional benefits.
Bitter Gourd Nutritional Benefits:
Bitter Gourd are very low in calories but dense with precious nutrients. It is an excellent source of vitamins B1, B2, B3 and C, magnesium, folate, zinc, phosphorus, manganese, and has high dietary fiber. It is rich in iron, containing twice the beta carotene of broccoli, twice the calcium of spinach and twice the potassium of a banana. Bitter melon contains a unique phyto constituent that has been confirmed to have a hypoglycemic effect called charantin. There is also another insulin like compound known as polypeptide P which has been suggested as insulin replacement in some diabetic patients.
Bitter Gourd Health Benefits:
Few other fruits/vegetables offer medicinal properties for these ailments like Bitter Gourd does. Let us quickly look at some of the most well known health benefits.
- Respiratory Disorders: Bitter Gourd fresh pods are an excellent remedy for curing respiratory problems like Asthma, Cold, Cough etc.
- Liver tonic: Drink one glass juice daily to heal liver problems. Keep consuming this continuously for a week to see results.
- Immune system: Boil bitter gourd leaves or fruits in water and consume it every day to fight against infections. This also helps to build your immunity.
- Acne: Consuming Bitter Gourd can help to get rid of acne, blemishes and deep skin infections. Bitter Gourd is useful in treating blood disorders like blood boils, Scabies, Itching, Psoriasis, Ring worm and other fungal diseases. The free radicals in it are also useful for anti aging. Consume juice of bitter melon mixed with lemon on an empty stomach daily for 6 months or till you get the required results.
- Diabetes: Bitter Gourd juice benefits to overcome type 2 diabetes. It has been a part of the Chinese and Indian ancient medicine for a long time but only recent research has proven that it is no folk more. Type 2 diabetes is causes partially due to the inability of a cell to absorb the sugar in the blood due to insufficient insulin or due to development of resistance to insulin. In both cases. The cells are unable to absorb the sugar due to the ineffectiveness of insulin produced. The absorption of sugar occurs due to the activation of AMP activated protein kinase in the cells. Bitter melon activated these kinases due to which the absorption of sugar increases and hence aids bringing diabetes in control.
- Constipation: Helps in easy digestion as it contains fiber properties. The food is digested and waste is thrown out of the body which helps in curing indigestion and constipation problems
- Kidney and bladder: Helps to maintain healthy liver and bladder. It is also useful in curing kidney stones.
A Quick Review:
- Very good for the heart in many ways. They help to reduce the bad cholesterol of the body.
- Can prevent cancer cells from multiplying.
- Contains antioxidants which help to flush out your system. This improves your metabolism and thus helping you lose weight quickly.
- Helps in controlling blood flow and clotting, Causing wounds to heal faster, preventing further infections.