Bitter gourd and its benefits


A common vegetable in the indian kitchen is bitter gourd. It belongs to the same family as that of bottle gourd. Just like bottle gourd,it is low in calories and high in fiber.

It contains beta carotene, a precursor to form vitamin A< , hence can provide vitamin A. It is rich in vitamin B1, B2, B3 and folic acid as well as minerals like copper, phosphorous, magnesium and is also high in potassium etc. Although bitter in taste, it can be overlooked for its various health benefits.

  • It is effective in controlling high blood sugars in diabetes because of the fiber content.
  • In alcoholism, the commonly seen deficiencies are of B group vitamins. Commonly seen symptoms are redness of the tongue, skin being flaky and dry etc. These symptoms can  be overcome by daily including this vegetable in your diet.
  • Works as a good laxative and is effective in treating constipation.
  • As it is high in vitamins and minerals, it can improve the metabolism of various nutrients like carbohydrates.
  • It is very low in carbohydrates, hence can be included in the diets of people who need to follow a carbohydrate restricted diet such as in diabetes and polycystic ovarian diseases. Hence is a very good vegetable to be served with cereals.
  • It is also said to improve the immunity, hence can help to prevent common colds and fevers.
  • Include this vegetable regularly in your diet to reap its benefits.

About Sanjana Shenoy

A dietitian from Mangalore, India. A post graduate diploma holder in “Dietetics” and a university topper from Welcomgroup School of Hotel Administration from the prestigious Manipal University. At present working as a Dietitian for the Manipal Group of Hospitals namely KMC hospital Mangalore, India. Consultant for corporates like Infosys and others, conducting talks and presentations for various associations and local television shows.

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13 Responses to Bitter gourd and its benefits

  1. marie July 13, 2009 at 4:09 pm #

    hey can i have your online account??
    i am a student here in the philippines..i am currently under a study on making a guord bread..i think you can help me regarding with my studies.. thanks for the infomation you pposted here..

  2. Sanjana - Dietitian July 14, 2009 at 9:19 am #

    You can contact me on Skype.

  3. Sameera October 31, 2009 at 5:56 pm #

    Is bitter gourd juice also good for weight loss ? someone suggested it mixed with cucumber juice to reduce bitterness .

  4. Sanjana - Dietitian November 10, 2009 at 10:42 am #

    Yes it may dilute the taste….

  5. TANIII November 18, 2009 at 12:06 am #


  6. Sanjana - Dietitian November 18, 2009 at 10:25 am #


    I love the idea of steaming. You are getting the most out of it. Club this along with a low calorie diet and regular exercise.

  7. T.S.SUNDARAM November 21, 2009 at 3:35 pm #

    I am a regular user of Bitter guard. Pretty old in age I have no sugar problem so far.In spite of the bitter taste, I like and enjoy eating Bitter guard as much as I can . It is a regular routine for me. How do I take it.? Here is the recipe:-

    Bitter guard, after washing well is cut into circular pieces, 4 rings in 2 cms length, soak them for quite some time in medium thick Tamarind water, which contains turmeric powder, salt to taste and a small quantity of Asafoetida powder.In a frying pan with little oil heated, add dry chilly and mustard seeds. After the splutter of Mustard, transfer the cut bitter guard pieces and Tamarind water entirely into the frying pan and allow them to cook for quite some time till it becomes soft and the tamarind water evaporates away. Your Bitter guard rings are ready. If the seeds are very tender let it remain . Otherwise discard the seeds. Not a difficult dish to prepare.And the bitter taste will not come in your way.

  8. Oats April 10, 2010 at 9:39 am #

    Dear Sanjana,

    I landed accidentallly on your blog but found the contennts brilliant & very informative. Thank you for sharing your knowledge.

    Here’s my first question: I have read at multiple places about health benefits of Oats. I try to eat atleast 100 grams of Oats a day with milk. Can you please confirm that this much is ok or am I overdoing it?

  9. Sanjana - Dietitian May 6, 2010 at 12:06 pm #

    Hi Vikas,

    Oats is good for health but you are overdoing it. Take not more than 25 grams of oats per day…

  10. chophelkama March 14, 2011 at 11:00 am #

    i am bp patient normally having 140/120 and taking regular medicines but now a days i feel a kgs of weight on my head and neck and feel uneasy to stand my head right up. is it because of my bp

  11. Jennifer Dsilva July 20, 2011 at 2:21 am #

    Hi Sanjana,

    You look so cute with your smiling face. Your topics on how to maintain good health is great. The fruits, vegetables and cereals mentioned if taken in the right manner will carry oneself in good health and we will always feel young in body and at heart. Keep up your good advice many will benefit from it if they follow the instruction properly. I have come across people who say that if beetroot is taken on a daily basis will end up in getting a cold. Is this true? because I have not felt it that way all I was told by my mum that all vegetable are good if taken properly. Continue your good advice. I will pray for you to do the right thing always and help the common man. God bless you.

  12. Sanjoy July 30, 2011 at 1:13 pm #

    I am 32 years, i am suffering from gas and faty liver problem. My friend avdice me to take regular raw turmeric in the morning. will it work for my problem.

  13. maria April 27, 2012 at 11:18 pm #

    dear sanjana
    i am 27 year old n my weight is 63kg i m married i have three babies i dont have time to exercise i cant diet plz suggest me some tips for reducing weght

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