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A Sweet Truth about Bitter Gourd

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Scores of children as well as adults frown the moment they see this veggie served on their plates. This is because it is a bitter-tasting veggie. Though all the people remember this vegetable because of its bitter-tasting property, a sweet fact about Bitter Gourd, also known as Bitter Melon, is that it has many health, nutritional as well as medicinal benefits.

Read below to find out its healthful virtues!

Health Benefits
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  1. Regular consumption of bitter melon juice has been proven to improve stamina level.
  2. It also increases energy in body.
  3. This bitter juice helps to strengthen your immune system. This increases your body’s resistance against infections.
  4. Sleeping patterns improve by drinking its juice regularly.

Nutritional Benefits

  1. Bitter melons are low in calories.
  2. They are filled with precious nutrients.
  3. These gourds are an excellent source of vitamins such as B1, B2, B3, as well as C.
  4. They are a rich source of minerals such as zinc, magnesium, folic acid, iron, manganese and phosphorus.
  5. The beta-carotene in bitter gourds is twice as that of broccoli.
  6. They have twice the calcium content of spinach.
  7. They contain twice the potassium content of a banana.
  8. They are high in dietary fiber.

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Medicinal Benefits

  1. Bitter melons contain a unique phyto-constituent (plant insulin) which has a hypoglycemic effect known as ‘charantin’. This is highly beneficial for lowering sugar levels in urine and blood.
  2. They also contain another insulin-like compound called ‘polypeptide P’ which is used as an insulin replacement in patients suffering from diabetes mellitus.
  3. In early stages of cholera, taking teaspoons of a concoction made with bitter melon leaves is known to cure cholera.
  4. They are highly beneficial in treating blood disorders such as itching due to toxemia and blood boils.
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  6. The juice of this vegetable has been shown to greatly improve glucose tolerance without increasing the levels of blood insulin.
  7. The high beta-carotene content in bitter melons make them one of the best vegetables that help to alleviate eye problems, thereby improving eyesight.
  8. They treat hangover as they have alcohol intoxication properties.
  9. They also help to repair liver problems that are caused by alcohol consumption.
  10. Sipping a little juice of bitter melon with a glass of buttermilk on an empty stomach every morning for about a period of 1 month is known to treat piles.
  11. Regular consumption of this bitter juice has been known to improve fungal infections like athletes feet and ring-worm. It also improves skin ailments such as psoriasis.
  12. Drinking fresh juice of bitter melon on a daily basis along with a cupful of honey mixed in water, will improve respiratory disorders such as bronchitis, asthma and pharyngitis.
  13. Bitter gourd acts as a blood purifier by cleansing the toxins from the blood, which helps in curing toxemia. Similarly, it cleanses the liver, which helps in getting rid of jaundice. This way, it detoxifies the body.

Caution

  • Excessive intake may cause diarrhea or slight abdominal pain. Therefore, do not have more than 2 melons or 2 ounces of its juice a day.
  • Diabetic patients taking hypoglycemic medicines will need to modify the dosage of their medicines if they consume bitter melons on a regular basis.
  • In pregnant women, bitter gourd or its juice may irritate the uterus, leading to preterm labor. Thus, it must be avoided.
  • As it is a unique veggie, with a unique taste, it is best to consult a doctor before planning to regularly consume it.

Now that you know the ‘not so bitter’ properties of bitter melon, you should try to have it at least once a week.

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