Sunday, April 4, 2010
Nutritional Value of the Bittergourds / Karelas
The vegetables are green and white in colour , are about 10 - 20" long, teapering at the end. They have a bitter taste but very healthy. The bitterfruits are cooked and eaten as a vegetable in these places but bittergourds are also used as a folk medicine.
There are researches going on even now about bittergourds as the vegetable is supposed to contain an insulin like compound which is highly beneficial in lowering blood and urine sugar levels. Eating the vegetable liberally is highly recommended for the Diabetics and that too , drinking the juice of 4-5 fruits early in the morning in empty stomach is said to give a better result.
These vegetables are rich in essentialvitamins and minerals A, B1, B2 with C and iron. Bittergourd consumption regularly improves the general resistence to diseases / infection. It is said to be good for hypertension, neuritisand eye complication etc. These are used in the treatment of boils, scabies, itching,like fungal diseases.
If fresh juice is taken mixed with the lime juice it is said to improve the skin problems.
The roots and the leaves of bittergourds are also helpful in folk medicines for respiratory diseases like bronchitis, Asthma etc as well as the treatment of alcoholism.
Bitter gourd is said to help in improving the blood circulation which in turn helps you in your slimming efforts. The essential vitamins and minerals present in Karels / bitter gourd helps in treating defective metabolism of carbohydrates. This is another main reason for the slimmers to start taking Karelas daily.
The bitterness can be reduced to an extent by soaking the cut vegetables either in salted water or butter milk. After sometime you can squeeze out the water with the bitterness and then cook it in any way you like. So make it a point to add bittergourds in your cooking and diet so that you need not have to drink the raw juice.
Learn to cook Bittergourds at home. For recipes see here