Bitter Gourd (Karela)
Momordica charantia Bitter Gourd, Carillafruit Karavelaka Karela Karale Pavakkay Kakara Kaypa Hagalakayi
How it looks—It is a branching climber with angled stems, beaked and ribbed fruits and shining even seeds.
What we use—Whole plant
What it does—Roots—Astringent
Leaves—Anthelmintic, emetic and purgative
Fruits—Purgative, antidiabetic, emmenagogue, anti-inflammatory
How we use it—
In gout—The oil prepared from the decoction of the leaves of bittergourd makes a soothing topical application in gout.
In cholera—Drink the juice of bitter gourd with some sesame oil twice a day to arrest the vomiting and diarrhoea associated with cholera.
In worm infestations—Paste the leaves of bittergourd, roll them into balls and consume 1-2 balls for a good deworming.
In burning sensation of hands and feet—The juice of bittergourd leaves should be applied topically to alleivate the burning sensation.
In delayed periods—Taking a decoction of the roots of bitter gourd at least twice a day usually makes the period commence. As a diet—
In fevers and swellings—The entire plant may be used in various preparations like curry, soup, or vegetable, to reduce swelling and bring down temperature.
In measles—The juice of the leaves of bitter gourd with turmeric serves as a cleansing drink during an attack of measles.
Also known as- Latin English Sanskrit Hindi Marathi Tamil Telugu Malayalam Kannada
In diabetes—Probably the most celebrated use of the bittergourd in diseases is in checking blood sugar levels in diabetes. A glass of the juice or decoction of the leaves every morning on empty stomach along with a balanced diet is effective in keeping diabetes under control.