Bitter Gourd :Chemical Constituents, Health Benefits and Synonyms

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Bitter Gourd : Chemical Constituents, Benefits and Uses

Bitter Gourd : Chemical Constituents, Benefits and Uses

Morphology and Distribution of Bitter Gourd:

Bitter gourd consists of the fresh green fruits of the plant Momordica charantia belonging to the family Cucurbitaceae. Bitter Gourd is also known by other names like Karela and Momordica.

Bitter Gourd is an annual or perennial climber found throughout the India. It is cultivated regularly as a vegetable.

The bitter gourds are light to dark green in colour and are extremely bitter in taste.

Chemical constituents in Bitter Gourd:

The leaves and fruits of bitter gourd contains charantin. Charantin is a steroidal saponin and it has blood sugar lowering activity. These fruits also contain a cathartic principle known as momordicin.

Other constituents in the drug are carbohydrates, mineral matter, ascorbic acid, alkaloids, glucoside, saponins and mucilage.

Medicinal Uses and Health Benefits of Bitter Gourd :

  • Stomachic
  • Carminative
  • Tonic
  • Cooling agent
  • Used in the treatment of Rheumatism and Gout.
  • Used for spleen and liver disorders
  • Fruits as well as juice from them lowers the blood sugar levels.
  • Used for the treatment of Diabetes mellitus.
  • Cathartic

Synonyms of Bitter gourd :

  • Hindi – Karela
  • Bengali – Karela
  • Marathi – Karle
  • Sanskrit – Sushari
  • Tamil – Pakal
  • Telugu – Kakarakay
  • Kannada – Hagul
  • Malayalam – Kaippavalli
  • Oriyan – Kalara

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