Bitter gourd, which is also known as bitter melon, is cucumber-like fruit with ugly, rough, spiky skin and bitter in taste. Bitter Gourd in Hindi is known as Karela, karvellak or kareli. Karela is used when it is unripe and green in color. Yellow color bitter melon is not meant for the medicinal or edible purpose.
Bitter gourd nutrition:
- Karela contains very less amount of Fat, approx. 0.2 gm, and zero amount of Cholesterol in about 100 gm of each fruit.
- It has a large percentage of minerals. 100 gm of it provides 20% of Potassium and 25% of Magnesium of daily requirement. It also has Zinc, Sodium, Magnesium, Iron, and Copper.
- Bitter melon is a rich source of vitamins. 100 gm of bitter melon provides 50% of daily requirements of vitamin A, 40 % of vitamin B and 90% of vitamin C.
- Cellulose is a dietary fiber which is also found in rich amount in karela.
- Bitter melon has active content named momordicine.
- 100gm of bitter melon provides only 34 calories. That means an average size karela will provide 125-200 calories.
Health benefits of bitter gourd:
Bitter melon is a good choice in diet for various disorders. Whole fruit is nontoxic and completely edible. Karela benefits heart, liver, kidney, intestine, stomach and other organs.
Bitter gourd for diabetes:
Karela or bitter melon traditionally used as an effective medicine for treating diabetes. Modern researchers also support this theory. Karela contains some active compound like Polypeptide P, Vicine, and Charatin. These compounds mimic human insulin and reduce blood sugar level. Other active contain is momardin, which helps to metabolize carbohydrate and fatty acid. Consuming karela juice on empty stomach with 1/2 spoon turmeric and 2-3 pinch of black pepper is very effective for diabetes.
Bitter gourd for liver:
The bitter taste of karela is effective for liver. It stimulates liver contraction and squeezes out its juices. Karela juice is a good home remedy for hepatitis. 1/2 cup or 50 ml of Karela Juice with 1 tablespoon lemon juice is a good choice for liver problems.
Bitter gourd for acne:
Anti-biotic properties of bitter melon help to reduce pathogens’ activities. It purifies blood and increases blood circulation in acne area. Which, in response make skin beautiful and acne free. For acne, 15 ml of karela juice with 15 ml Aloe vera juice twice in a day is advisable.
Bitter gourd for constipation:
Fiber properties of bitter melon help in digestion. It is laxative in nature. It causes watery secretion in intestine which makes stool soft and easily passable through the rectum. 15 ml of bitter melon with 2-3 pinch of black salt is effective for constipation.
Bitter gourd for heart
Bitter melon reduces blood sugar and cholesterol level in blood. It improves blood circulation and removes plaques in arteries. In Ayurveda Karela is used as a heart tonic, it improves cardiac muscle tone.
Bitter gourd for cancer:
Anti-oxidants present in karela remove most of the cancer-causing agent in blood. Researchers have found some evidence that bitter melon effectively reduces the size of multiple tumors in uterus, bone, and breast. It also enhances the capacity of bones to produce RBC, thus it is also beneficial for leukemia and hemolytic disorder. Consuming 20-25 ml bitter melon juice with aloe vera juice or pomegranate juice is effective.
Bitter gourd for weight loss:
The excess amount of fiber and low calories in bitter melon make it a good choice for weight loss regime.
Bitter gourd for stomach ulcer:
Bitter melon makes a covering on the ulcer and prevents the ulcer from stomach acid. Anti-biotic properties of Karela prevent the ulcer from secondary infection.
Bitter gourd to purify blood:
Anti-oxidant properties; diuretic and laxative nature of bitter melon detoxifies the blood and removes all toxins from body either through stool or urine. For blood purification, take 15 ml juice with ½ tablespoon turmeric for 2 weeks. The continuous use will show healthy changes in the skin.
Bitter melon for skin disease:
Karela juice is used for skin conditions like eczema, macule, and papule on skin, dark pigmentation and for allergic reaction on the skin.
Bitter Gourd for anti-aging:
Anti-oxidants and minerals present in bitter melon make skin glowing. It removes wrinkles, tightens the skin muscles and improves blood circulation.
Bitter melon for hair:
Minerals present in bitter melon provide all essential components for hair growth.
Side effects of bitter melon:
- Laxative– Bitter melon has laxative properties, consuming a large amount of karela juice can cause diarrhea.
- Diuretic– Excess amount of bitter gourd juice can increase the urge of urination.
- Appetite- High fiber and bitter taste of bitter melon causes stomach upset and anorexia.
- Cold fever– Bitter melon is excessive cold by its nature. Consuming fresh juice in cold weather can cause cold fever or cold infections.
- Nausea vomit– the Bitter taste of karela induces nausea and vomit in the most patients.
- Allergic reaction- Some people have miner form of allergies with the component of Karela. Allergic reaction from bitter melon causes a sore throat, itching and skin rashes.
How to use bitter melon:
- Bitter gourd juice- Fresh juice of bitter gourd should always be preferred than market-based juices, because of preservative.
- Boiled bitter gourd juice– Boiled bitter melon juice has a little less amounts of nutrients. But after boiling it is less bitter and easily digestible. Patient with soft stomach should prefer this.
- Bitter gourd seeds- Seeds of bitter melon don’t have any specific properties. Although it is edible and nontoxic.
- Bitter gourd slice– a ½ slice of karela is a good choice but it is extremely bitter. Fiber quantity is rich in the slice. So if you are on weight loss or diabetic special diet and can tolerate the bitter taste, then this is a good option.
- Rough skin of bitter gourd- it is again nontoxic or edible. It is the main source of anti-oxidants. So this rough skin should not be removed before making juice.
Above article is only for knowledge purpose. Please contact your healthcare provider before using any of above medicine or method. for any query or personal consultation according to your health condition Please Contact Us