ayurveda herbs

Health Benefits of Karela

Karela is a very healthy vegetable that is packed with minerals vitamins and antioxidants. It is also referred to as Momordica charantia or Bitter Gourd or Bitter Melon. This is a tropical vine which is a part of the gourd family and is associated closely to cucumber, pumpkin, squash and zucchini.

The vegetable is cultivated across the globe for its edible fruit that happens to be a staple food in different types of cuisines in Asia. The Chinese variety of this vegetable is generally long in shape and pale green in color. Bumps similar to warts cover its surface. The Indian variety, on the other hand, is narrower in shape and consists of pointed ends with jagged, rough spikes over the rind.

Part(s) of Plant that is used

It has a distinct appearance and short flavor. There are various amazing health benefits of bitter melon or karela. It can be consumed as a juice, a pickle or a vegetable. It can be added to the daily diet in various interesting ways:

  • It can be stuffed with vegetables and ground meat. You can serve the dish with a black bean sauce.
  • Seedless karela can be combined with the dressing that you like. It can be garnished to make a tasty salad.
  • It can be sautéed alongside onions, garlic and tomatoes. You can add this to scrambled eggs.
  • It can be combined along with some stir-fried food for better health benefits.
  • The juice of karela can be consumed along with some other vegetables and fruits to have a very healthy beverage packed with nutrients.
  • Dishes with karela can be prepared easily and this vegetable can be used in various recipes and cuisines.

Why take this herb?

Regular consumption of karela can provide you with various health benefits. This is a low-calorie food. It is a rich source of the vitamins C and A. It is packed with minerals such as iron zinc folate and potassium. There are antioxidants such as chlorogenic acid, epicatechin, gallic acid and catechin, which can keep the body free of various health problems.

Your body can get 19 calories of energy from the consumption of hundred grams of karela. In every hundred grams of this vegetable, 2.4 grams of fiber and about 3.5 grams of carbohydrates are present. However, 930 mg of proteins and 150 mg of fats are there. There are 87 grams of water.

10 health benefits of Karela

Regular intake of karela can provide your body with a wide range of health benefits:

1. Helps keep blood sugar levels down

The vegetable is regarded as good for diabetic people. There is a compound in bitter gourd which acts just like insulin, the hormone that is produced by the beta cells of the pancreas which helps reduce high blood sugar levels naturally. This is the reason why so many doctors recommend karela to diabetics.

The consumption of bitter gourd can help reduce the level of blood glucose in Type 1 as well as Type 2 diabetics. The consumption of a single glass of juice of bitter gourd can be so impactful that daily dosage of medicines might need to be reduced by diabetics.

2. Helps keep hair and skin healthy

It has to be remembered that beta board is packed with vitamin C vitamin A and various types of antioxidants which are highly beneficial for the skin health. It can fight skin blemishes and acne as well as reduce the signs of aging in skin.

The juice of karela adds shine to the hair and can combat the problems of split ends, hair loss and dandruff. Karela is useful for the treatment of different types of skin infections such as itching, psoriasis and ringworm.

3. Detoxifies the liver

Various studies have shown that karela is useful for the liver and can help detoxify the organ easily. It can boost the number of enzymes in liver. It has been proven to be an excellent cure for hangovers after too high alcohol consumption. This is because it reduces the deposits of alcohol in the liver. The consumption of karela can also benefit the intestine and the bladder.

4. Improves digestive health

Bitter gourd is rich source of fibers, which makes it excellent for improving digestive health. Regular intake of this vegetable can help improve bowel movement. It can help the stomach to settle down and can provide you with relief from constipation problems.

5. Improves the health of heart

The intake of bitter gourd can reduce the amount of bad cholesterol or LDL in the body. Naturally the risks of suffering from a heart attack can be decreased. Blockages from arteries can also be reduced, due to the intake of this fiber-rich food.

6. Effective in fighting cancer

The intake of karela has been found to give a boost to immunity. Naturally, if you consume it quite regularly, you can keep infections and allergies away. It can fight cancer very well, which is one of its most amazing benefits for human health.

It works against the proliferation of cancer cells and can stop formation of tumors. Regular intake of bitter gourd can significantly reduce the risk of prostate, colon and breast cancers.

7. Helps manage weight

Kerala has been found to be useful for weight loss efforts. It is rich in fibers and low in terms of calories, which makes it a perfect food for the daily diet of weight watchers.

It stops the growth and formation of adipose cells – the kind of cells which store fat in the human body. The vegetable also boosts the metabolic pace, leading to burning of fat more quickly. The antioxidants present in the food help remove toxins from the body and can reduce fat easily.

8. Helps in healing of wounds

Bitter gourd is known for its excellent healing properties. It can help reduce infections, make wounds heal quickly and control blood clotting and blood flow.

9. Helps purify blood

The vegetable is rich in antioxidants which make it useful for curing various blood related problems. It can help improve blood circulation and fight cancer, hair and skin problems.

10. Provides the body with energy

Regular consumption of karela has also been found to improve energy and stamina in the body significantly. It can improve the quality of sleep and reduce insomnia as well as other sleep problems.


In countries like India, Karela has been used for a long time for the natural treatment of various disorders and for overall health improvement. It is a staple in the daily diet of people in many Asian countries. It is time that you wake up to its benefits and add it to your meals too.


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