Bitter Gourd Benefits, Nutrition, And Disadvantages

bitter gourd benefits and disadvantages

Bitter gourd (bitter melon) benefits a lot. Bitter gourd is perfect for weight loss. Bitter gourd’s benefits to reducing weight are attributed to its high fiber and low carbohydrate and calorie content. It makes an ideal diet for those on a weight reduction program. Here we will discuss the benefits of bitter gourd and its disadvantages.

Bitter Gourd Benefits

Helps to maintain blood sugar levels

Bitter melon helps to control diabetes naturally as it contains an insulin-like compound called Polypeptide-p or p-Insulin. Research has shown that regular intake of optimum amounts of bitter melon juice can significantly reduce blood glucose levels in people suffering from Type-2 Diabetes. Further research has shown that bitter lemon increases the uptake of glucose and improves glycemic control. It even helps people with Type-1 diabetes.

Bitter melon for heartburn

Bitter melon helps to lower the level of bad cholesterol in your body and thus helps to keep your heart healthy. It contains potassium which absorbs the excess sodium in your body and thus maintains your blood pressure. The iron and folic acid which is present in bitter melon help to ensure that your heart does not suffer a stroke.

Bitter melon aids in blood purification

Bitter melon is known to be an effective blood purifier. It has anti-microbial and anti-oxidant properties that help to purify your blood. This in turn helps you get healthy and glowing skin. Various skin disorders like eczema and psoriasis can be treated by including bitter melon in your diet.

Bitter melon good for the immune system

Bitter melon contains antioxidants that help to enhance your body’s immunity. The antioxidants act as a powerful defense mechanism against various illnesses as they act against the free radicals and other dangerous compounds that are released during cell metabolism. Thus, bitter melon protects against 3 very dangerous illnesses like heart attacks, kidney damage, and liver failure.

Bitter melon supplement for weight loss

If you are trying to lose some weight, there is no other healthy way to do it than including bitter melon in your diet. Bitter melon is low in carbohydrates, fats, and calories. Consumption of bitter melon will keep you full for longer and thus can easily fit into your weight loss program. Studies have shown that bitter melon extracts help to dislocate human fat cells and also prevent the growth of new ones.

Helps to deal with respiratory problems

Respiratory problems like asthma, cold, and cough can be treated effectively by including bitter melon in your diet. Paste of bitter melon leaves when taken together with a paste of tulsi leaves and honey in the morning is a good remedy for your respiratory problems.

Bitter melon cure breast cancer

In addition to being an anti-oxidant, bitter melon also has anti-tumor and anti-carcinogenic properties. Consuming bitter melon helps to prevent tumor growth in cervical, breast, and prostate cancer patients. This is primarily because this fruit can induce apoptosis or cell death in cancerous cells.

Bitter melon acts as an anti-fungal agent

Consumption of bitter melon in optimum quantities helps to fight off various fungal infections as it possesses anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties. These properties also help to remove toxins from the bloodstream which may cause various diseases in your body.

Bitter melon for hemorrhoids problem

Hemorrhoids or piles are very uncomfortable illnesses that may jeopardize your daily life. Bitter melon has anti-inflammatory properties which help reduce or prevent the uncomfortable symptoms associated with this disease.

A paste created from the roots of the bitter melon plant when applied topically to the affected areas helps to reduce inflammation and also helps to reduce pain and bleeding.

Bitter melon good for the eyes

Bitter melon is rich in compounds like beta-carotene and Vitamin A which are very beneficial for your eyes. It helps to deal with vision-related problems like cataracts. Including bitter melon in your diet will help to prevent or at least delay the onset of this disease called cataract which causes partial blindness in your eyes.

Nutritional Value of 100g Bitter Melon

  • Water 94 g
  • Carbohydrate 3.7 g
  • Protein 1 g
  • Fat 0.17 g
  • Energy 17 kcal
  • Fiber 2.8 g
  • Calcium 19 mg
  • Magnesium 17 mg
  • Iron 0.43 mg
  • Sodium 5 mg
  • Potassium 296 mg
  • Copper 0.034 mg
  • Zinc 0.8 mg
  • Selenium 0.2 µg
  • Manganese 0.089 mg
  • Vitamin A 24 µg
  • Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) 0.04 mg
  • Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin) 0.04 mg
  • Vitamin B3 (Niacin) 0.4 mg
  • Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid) 0.212 mg
  • Vitamin B6 0.043 mg
  • Vitamin B9 (Folate) 72 µg
  • Vitamin C 84 mg

Bitter Gourd Disadvantages

It is advisable to avoid bitter melon before and after surgeries as it acts strongly to reduce blood sugar levels. It is better to avoid eating bitter melon during pregnancy as it may cause excessive menstrual bleeding. Dehydrogenase deficiency is caused in some people due to the consumption of bitter melon. The symptoms of this include headaches, stomach pains, and fever.

  • When taken orally by some people, bitter melon might upset the stomach, but there is not much information related to the side effects associated with its long-term use.
  • Bitter melon might cause a rash when applied to the skin.
  • Some people may experience headaches with oral consumption of bitter melon.
  • Bitter melon may also lower the blood sugar level (consult a doctor before use in case you are taking medicines for diabetes).

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