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Is Bitter Gourd good For Diabetes?
Diabetes is a chronic disease that can lead to many other health problems if left unaddressed. Although there is no known cure, it can be managed better with lifestyle changes like food and exercise. Some foods are known to have a good impact on blood sugar levels and one such diabetes superfood is Karela or Bitter Gourd. As its name suggests, you might not like its bitter taste, but you will certainly appreciate what it can do for your health.
Bitter gourd is a powerhouse of nutrients. It is rich in iron, magnesium, dietary fibre, calcium, and potassium. Also, it is a well-known source of Vitamin B1, B2, B3, B9, and C. Not only is Karela good for diabetes, it helps in cleansing the liver and also aids in weight loss. The reason your granny advised including Karela in your meals.
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Benefits of Karela
Bitter melon, also known as bitter gourd or Momordica charantia, is a fruit that is commonly used in Asian cuisine and traditional medicine. Consumption of bitter melon may have the following positive effects on health:
- Blood sugar control: Bitter melon may help regulate blood sugar levels by enhancing insulin sensitivity and lowering glucose synthesis in the liver.
- Anti-inflammatory effects: Bitter melon includes chemicals that have been demonstrated to have anti-inflammatory qualities, which may help ease symptoms of disorders such as arthritis and asthma.
- Antioxidant activity: Bitter melon is rich in antioxidants, which can help protect the body against damage caused by free radicals and oxidative stress.
- Immune system support: Several research have suggested that bitter melon may increase immune system function and assist the body fight off infections.
- Digestive health: Bitter melon may aid in digestion by boosting the synthesis of digestive enzymes and promoting gut health.
To completely understand the effects and potential hazards of bitter melon, additional research is needed, but several studies have revealed promising results for the health advantages of bitter melon. Like with any supplement or food, it's vital to consult to your healthcare practitioner before adding bitter melon to your diet.
Research Studies on the Effects of Karela on Blood Sugars.
Bitter gourd has powerful hypoglycemic and anti-diabetic properties, making it a superfood for diabetes patients.
Bitter Gourds contain 3 Active Hypoglycemic Agents that help manage diabetes effectively.
One major issue in Type 2 diabetes patients is insulin resistance. Consuming Bitter gourd helps the cells take in sugar molecules, and an increase in secretion of insulin. Many studies have been conducted over the years to identify the benefits of Karela for diabetes.
1. Journal of Ethnopharmacology (2011)
Published a study. The study observed decreased fructosamine levels among Type 2 diabetes patients when they consumed 2000 mg of bitter gourd per day. Thanks to bitter melon’s modest hypoglycemic effect.
2. Egyptian Pharmaceutical Journal (2015)
Published a study in 2015 suggesting bitter gourd as an effective oral adjunct hypoglycemic having no reported side effects.
3. Asian Pac J Trop Dis (2015)
Bitter Gourd lowers blood sugar levels by helping more glucose enter the cells and then assisting the body in processing it.
Can Bitter Gourd be harmful in some cases?
While bitter gourd has amazing health benefits, it may also cause problems if not consumed with precaution.
- Excessive intake of Karela can lead to an upset stomach, diarrhea, and headache. Health practitioners advise not to take bitter gourd juice regularly for more than three months.
- If you intake bitter gourd with other dietary supplements and diabetic drugs, it may also cause a sudden drop in sugar levels leading to fatigue and dizziness.
- Karela may be unsafe for women who are pregnant or breastfeeding.
- Bitter gourd must also be avoided during surgeries as it may affect blood glucose levels during and after surgery. It is advisable to stop the intake of Karela at least two weeks before the surgery.
- If the Karela juice or curry is not prepared in hygienic conditions, it may cause an upset stomach.
Karela Juice Recipes you must try!
Despite knowing the numerous benefits of Karela, its bitter taste might be a factor holding you back from including it in your diet. Can bitter gourd juice be taken daily? You can twist Karela juice taste by mixing it with other veggies and fruits for having several health benefits of karela juice. Here are bitter melon juice recipe you can give a try.
1. Bitter Gourd with Cucumber Juice
The bitterness of bitter gourd can be effectively managed with cucumber’s sweetness. All you need to do is:
- Take two large Karelas
- Wash them thoroughly and cut them into halves
- Remove the seeds and crust
- Dice the remaining Karela into small pieces
- Soak them in water for 10 minutes and add a pinch of salt
- Take a medium-sized cucumber. Peel and dice it into small pieces
- Do the same with one green apple
- Now, churn the diced bitter gourd, cucumber and green apple in a juicer
- Pour the juice into a glass and add a spoonful of lemon to it
- You can add black salt and black pepper as well
- Drink it empty stomach in the morning to reap maximum benefits
2. Bitter Gourd with Turmeric Juice
If you do not want to add any other veggie or fruit to your bitter gourd juice, you can try this bitter gourd and turmeric juice recipe.
- Follow the above process to wash, cut, and soak diced bitter gourd pieces in saltwater for around 10 minutes.
- Next, churn the diced Karela pieces to extract its juice in the juicer
- Pour the juice into a glass and add a teaspoon of turmeric and Himalayan or rock salt to it
- You can also squeeze half a lemon into it
- Drink one glass of juice early in the morning to keep your diabetes in control
Several studies have validated the benefits of karela for diabetes patients. Although bitter, it has rich Hypoglycemic and Anti-diabetic properties, when consumed in moderation and the he biggest effect is seen when its consumed on an empty stomach in the morning.
Karela, though bitter, is a superfood for diabetes with its rich hypoglycemic and anti-diabetic properties. Drinking Karela juice on an empty stomach in the morning can help manage diabetes effectively. Numerous studies have been conducted repeatedly to decrypt the benefits of Karela for diabetes.
This website's content is provided only for educational reasons and is not meant to be a replacement for professional medical advice. Due to individual differences, the reader should contact their physician to decide whether the material is applicable to their case.