Momordica charantia or our very own 'Karela' has earned a bad name for itself. But what we do not know is a goldmine of benefits behind the bitter taste it has. Let us discuss a few benefits of having karela.:
Bitter gourd has been used in Chinese & Indian tradition since ages to cure type II diabetes. The fruit of the bitter melon contains a glycoside called momordin, as well as charantia, a blood sugar-lowering agent composed of steroids. Bitter melon also contains a blood sugar-lowering peptide called polypeptide-P property of bitter gourd. In human body, the absorption of sugar occurs due to the activation of protein kinase in the cells and bitter gourd activates this kinase which results in higher absorption of sugar.
2) PURIFIES BLOOD
Antioxidant & antimicrobial properties present in bitter gourd treat blood disorder, clear toxins from the blood and purify it. It also improves the circulation throughout the body, which in turn prove to be beneficial in curing minor infections to cancer.
Karela helps cure acne due to its antimicrobial And antibacterial effect. Acne results when the sebaceous glands over secrete due to high androgen levels. This excess oil and blocks the hair follicle causing black & white heads, which sometimes do get infected with bacteria.Drinking karela juice mixed with lemon juice benefits a lot in controlling and curing acne.
4) SHINY HAIR
To bring that natural sheen to the hair apply bitter gourd juice with yogurt, wash it off after sometime. This not only makes your hair shine but also helps you get rid of dandruff. It helps reducing split ends if its juice is applied twice a week. It also cures hairfall when used as a pack by mixing it with bottle gourd juice and sugar.
5) ANTI AGING
Bitter gourd acts as a good antioxidant as it is rich in vitamin C. it helps in getting rid of free radicals and slows down the aging of skin. It also protects the skin harmful effects ultra violet rays.
To help make bitter gourd more palatable, please try this recipe.
- 1/4 cup finely chopped bitter gourd
- 1 cup low-fat curds
- 2 tbsp. besan
- 1 tsp. oil
- 1/2 cup finely chopped onions
- 1 tsp. ginger-green chili paste
- salt to taste
- For The Garnish: 2 tbsp. finely chopped coriander
- In a deep bowl, combine the curds,besan and 1½ cups of water, mix well and whisk till smooth and no lumps remain.
- Heat the oil in a deep non-stick pan;add the onions and sauté on a medium flame for 1 to 2 minutes.
- Add the bitter gourd and salt and cook on a medium flame for 2 to 3 minutes or till they are soft.
- Add the ginger-green chili paste and the besan-curd-water mixture; mix well and bring to a boil.
- Stir once in a while. Add the little salt and cook for 1 minute.
- Serve hot garnished with the chopped coriander.