What Bitter Melon Can Do For Your Diabetes
- The first component is called;charantin, which consists of several steroids. It has been shown more effective than tolbutamide in lowering;high blood sugar levels;in some clinical studies.
- It also contains polypeptide-p, a hypoglycemic peptide in its fruit, seeds and tissue. Researchers have found it very effective when administered subcutaneously, for both type 1 and 2 diabetics. This peptide is very similar to insulin, and can act like insulin.
- The fruit juice of bitter melon can improve you blood sugar tolerance in type2 diabetics due to its ingredients, oleanolic acid glucosides.
- ;Also, these components can intensify the insulin production from the pancreas, due to the raise in beta cells .
- It can lower your sugar blood levels, avoiding the onset of diabetes complications. An additional positive effect of bitter melon is the lowering of total cholesterol. Due to its anti-oxidant activity, it protects your kidneys and other organs from damages.
- In addition, it stimulates the amino acids uptake into muscles, and gives great improvements to your energy levels and your appetite.
- As you may see, the bitter gourd components altogether can help lowering your;high blood sugar levels, leading to a well controlled diabetes.
- If you have type 2 diabetes, your body can still produce insulin, but cannot use it properly. Bitter melon tries not to accumulate too much sugar in your blood stream and helps your body cells to use it correctly.
- Next, scientists claim:
Bitter Melon Lowers Blood Sugar Levels & Used To Treat Diabetes
Bitter melon or bitter gourd is a vegetable/fruit that could be consumed as food or medicine. The fruit is grown in tropical and subtropical regions of the world in South America, Asia, parts of Africa and the Caribbean. The fruit that sprouts from a vine is green, oblong-shaped with a warty exterior. Its bitterness varies from geographical places of vegetation and is very rich in vitamins and minerals.
Bitter Melon is an alternative medication for the treatment of type 2 diabetes as it contains three anti-diabetic properties namely charantin, vicine, and polypeptide-P. Charantin is known for its lowering effect on blood glucose. These compounds could work alone or cooperates together to lower blood sugar levels. Lectin is also present in this vegetable that reduces blood glucose levels by acting on outer tissues and suppressing appetite and causes the hypoglycemic effect that develops after eating bitter melon.
A study shows that a one-week clinical trial with a daily consumption of 2000 mg of bitter Melon significantly lowered blood glucose with patients suffering type 2 diabetes. Although the pharmaceutical daily requirement is only 1000 mg of the drug metformin, the alternative natural medication did its job. The study was published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology 2011, reports Diabetes Company.
Nutritional Value Of Karela
- Bitter gourd or Karela is low in calories. 100 grams of bitter gourd gives about 19 calories of energy. Around 3.5 grams of carbohydrates and 2.4 grams of fibre are present in 100 grams of karela while it contains only 150 mg of fats and; 930 mg of proteins. It also has a high water content of 87 grams.
- Karela is rich in vitamin A and vitamin C. Minerals like potassium, folate, zinc and iron are also present in karela.
- Antioxidants like catechin, gallic acid, epicatechin and chlorogenic acid are obtained from karela, which helps to keep us free from many diseases.
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How To Use Bitter Melon To Lower Blood Sugar
Bitter melon, also called bitter apple, bitter gourd or bitter cucumber, is a vine-grown vegetable that can range in color from dark green to white and can grow between three to twelve inches tall. Diabetes Health reports that several compounds in bitter melon may have glucose-lowering properties and they include polypeptide P, vicine, and momordin and charantin, which are glycosides. The juice and pulp can be eaten and an injectable compound made from this vegetable has also been tested. There’s no traditional dose established for bitter melon. You should always consult your doctor before using bitter melon as a supplement to help control diabetes. Video of the Day The easiest way to consume bitter melon is by adding it to a stir-fry. Add several slices to your favorite vegetables and cook quickly over high heat. The taste of bitter melon is very bitter, so you may consider also adding sweeter vegetables such as onions, baby corn or green bell pepper. Buy bitter melon supplements, which are available in capsule form from Asian grocery stores, health food or natural food stores. Look for 500mg capsules, which should be taken twice a day with meals or as directed on the package. Monitor your glucose levels closely. Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center reports that bitter melon has a significant hypoglycemic effect, but that further studies are needed to verify this.Continue reading >>
Is It Reduces Good For Pancreatic Cancer
Bitter Melon can help prevent pancreatic cancer due to its rich antioxidants. This food is filled with many vitamins and antioxidants. It contains vitamin A, C, K, folate, potassium, and other micronutrients. These vitamins promote bone formation, wound healing, and growth. It is also a good source of catechin, epicatechin, gallic acid, and chlorogenic acid. Catechins are natural antioxidants that help cell repair and prevent further cell deterioration. Similarly, gallic acid and chlorogenic acid are phenolic compounds that contain antioxidative properties. Chlorogenic acid also helps in reducing glucose concentration in the bloodstream.
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Bitter Melon Can Be Cost
Bitter melon is a tall-growing plant cultivated mainly in Asian countries like India, China, and Bangladesh. The edible fruit is green, bitter in taste, and cucumber shaped. In India, it is called Karela. It is also grown in South America, the Caribbean, and East Africa. The scientific name of bitter melon is Momordica charantia. It belongs to the family Cucurbitaceae and has similarities with pumpkin and cucumber. It is used as traditional medicine for diabetes, kidney stone, cancer, eczema, gout, jaundice, piles, pneumonia, and psoriasis.
Helps Protect Against Diabetic Complications And Improves Immunity
The oxidative stress and chronic inflammation associated with diabetes also mean diabetics have to be wary about damage to the kidney, eyes, nerves, and the feet. But bitter melon may be able to step in and protect against these complications. Animal studies show that it may be able to scavenge free radicals that cause oxidative stress and protect from neurological, ocular, renal damage.Sathishsekar, Dhanasekar, and Sorimuthu Subramanian. Antioxidant properties of Momordica Charantia seeds on Streptozotocin induced diabetic rats. Asia Pacific journal of clinical nutrition 14, no. 2 : 153.
Phenolic components such as gallic acid and catechin in it are powerful antioxidants that boost the functioning of the immune system. leaf, stem and fruit fraction extracts in vitro. Food chemistry 110, no. 4 : 881-890. Lab studies have also shown that bitter gourd reduces intestinal inflammation and improves systemic immunity. Manabe, Mariko, Ryo Takenaka, Teruko Nakasa, and Osamu Okinaka. Induction of anti-inflammatory responses by dietary Momordica charantia L.. Bioscience, biotechnology, and biochemistry 67, no. 12 : 2512-2517. The high vitamin C content of the fruit also adds to its potential as an immunity-boosting food. One cup of the cooked bitter melon meets 45% of your daily value.Bitter gourd. USDA.
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What Are Some Of The Precautions
- As much as bitter squash is a plant-based extract, it is essential to take some precautions. As per now, the safety of long-term use of the plant is unknown. Consult with your physician before using the herb on a long-term basis.
- Avoid using the herb especially if you are pregnant or breastfeeding your baby. There is evidence that ingesting the plant when pregnant causes irregular menstrual bleeding in women and abortion to animals.
- Do not take the plant alongside your medicine unless advised so by your physician. The blood may interact with the medications and cause serious consequences.
- The dosage for bitter melon is unknown; it may depend on various factors such as age and your health condition. Consult with a physician first before taking it.
Special Precautions & Warnings
Pregnancy and breast-feedingLIKELY UNSAFE
Diabetes: Bitter melon can lower blood sugar levels. If you have diabetes and take medications to lower your blood sugar, adding bitter melon might make your blood sugar drop too low. Monitor your blood sugar carefully.
Glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase deficiency: People with G6PD deficiency might develop favism after eating bitter melon seeds. Favism is a condition named after the fava bean, which is thought to cause tired blood , headache, fever, stomach pain, and coma in certain people. A chemical found in bitter melon seeds is related to chemicals in fava beans. If you have G6PD deficiency, avoid bitter melon.
Surgery: There is a concern that bitter melon might interfere with blood sugar control during and after surgery. Stop using bitter melon at least 2 weeks before a scheduled surgery.
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Health Benefits Of Bitter Gourd 5 Reasons Why It Must Be In Your Diet
Most of us cringed, cried and fought when we were force-fed karela as a child. Being told it was good for us didnt make an iota of difference. If anything, obstinate kids resisted it even more. But now that were grown up and struggling with lifestyle diseases and modern day disorders, its about time we made up with bitter gourd and adopted it in our diets. Its health benefits are exactly what we need today.
Mumbai-based health experts Dr Roshani Gadge, diabetologist consultant, Gadge Diabetes Centre, Mumbai, and Jaee Khamkar, Dietician, Fortis Hospital, share all you need to know about bitter gourd:
High on nutrition
Bitter gourd is a rich source of vitamins and minerals. It contains iron, magnesium, potassium and vitamins like A and C. It contains twice the calcium of spinach and beta-carotene of broccoli. Various anti-oxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds are present in bitter gourd.
It also helps in lowering the bad cholesterol levels, thus reducing the risk of heart disease and stroke. Thats not all. It strengthens the immune system, improves respiratory health, boosts skin health and contains anti-ageing properties.
Great for diabetics
It is an excellent source of dietary fiber. Regular consumption of bitter gourd contributes to relieving constipation and indigestion. It supports healthy gut bacteria, which favours digestion and nutrient absorption.
Boosts weight loss
How to consume bitter gourd
How to make bitter gourd less bitter:
Can Bitter Melon Lower Triglycerides
Bitter melon can lower triglycerides. High levels of cholesterol and triglycerides cause blockage in the bloodstream and increase the risk of heart attacks. SugarMD Advanced Glucose Support Supplement and Bitter melon in it is a natural remedy for this condition. It contains cholesterol-lowering properties. It is low in calories, suppresses appetite, and helps to maintain healthy body weight and healthy triglycerides. It also has a surprising medicinal ability to promote fast glucose metabolism. It promotes fast glucose metabolism which helps reducing fat and improves digestion. Similarly, it also plays a pivotal role in reducing unhealthy low-density lipoprotein cholesterol and triglycerides and prevents potential risks. Always consume a balanced diet and avoid unhealthy foods.
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Surprising Benefits Of Bitter Melon For Diabetes
Bitter melon is also known as karela, bitter gourd, balsam apple, African cucumber and ampalaya.; Botanically, this plant is known as Momordica charantia it is a member of the gourd family, along with its cousins, pumpkin, acorn squash and zucchini. The plant itself is a tropical vine and looks a bit like a very warty cucumber! Bitter melon has been used in a number of traditional medicines as a treatment for diabetes.
Analysis of bitter melon indicates that it is very high in antioxidants, a protein that seems to be active against tumor cells, enzymes and fatty acids.; It also contains charantin, which appears to be responsible for its effects on blood sugar, vicine and a substance which appears to mimic insulinpolypeptide p.
Preservation Of Pancreatic Cells And Insulin Secretion
It was previously demonstrated by Jeewathayaparan et al. that oral administration of M. charantia could lead to the secretion of insulin from endocrine pancreatic cells. This observation was further confirmed by Ahmed et al. who investigated the effect of daily oral administration of M. charantia fruit juice and the distribution of , and cells in the pancreas of STZ-induced diabetic rats using immunohistochemical methods. The feeding of alcoholic extract from M. charantia showed definite improvement in the islets of Langerhans.
Physiological experiments have also shown that M. charantia can stimulate insulin secretion from the endocrine pancreas and elicit glucose uptake in the liver. Current evidence therefore indicates that the recovery and subsequent increase in the number of insulin producing cells followed by the release of insulin may be part of the several pathways by which M. charantia exerts its hypoglycemic effects. In addition to the properties mentioned above, M. charantia and its extracts may possess cell-like proliferation and growth-like properties similar to that of insulin. Nevertheless, further experiment are required, at least at the molecular level, to determine the precise mechanisms whereby M. charantia can either repair damaged cells or prevent their death.
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Aguwa, C. N. and Mittal, G. C. Abortifacient effects of the roots of Momordica angustisepala. J Ethnopharmacol. 1983;7:169-173. View abstract.
Akhtar, M. S. Trial of Momordica charantia Linn powder in patients with maturity-onset diabetes. J Pak.Med Assoc 1982;32:106-107. View abstract.
Ansari, N. M., Houlihan, L., Hussain, B., and Pieroni, A. Antioxidant activity of five vegetables traditionally consumed by South-Asian migrants in Bradford, Yorkshire, UK. Phytother Res 2005;19:907-911. View abstract.
Baldwa VS, Bhandara CM, Pangaria A, and et al. Clinical trials in patients with diabetes mellitus of an insulin-like compound obtained from plant source. Upsala J Med Sci 1977;82:39-41.
Chan, W. Y., Tam, P. P., and Yeung, H. W. The termination of early pregnancy in the mouse by beta-momorcharin. Contraception 1984;29:91-100. View abstract.
Chen, Q., Chan, L. L., and Li, E. T. Bitter melon reduces adiposity, lowers serum insulin and normalizes glucose tolerance in rats fed a high fat diet. J Nutr. 2003;133:1088-1093. View abstract.
Das, P., Sinhababu, S. P., and Dam, T. Screening of antihelminthic effects of Indian plant extracts: a preliminary report. J Altern Complement Med 2006;12:299-301. View abstract.
Dixit, V. P., Khanna, P., and Bhargava, S. K. Effects of Momordica charantia L. fruit extract on the testicular function of dog. Planta Med 1978;34:280-286. View abstract.
Risks And Side Effects
Based on research thats available at this time, bitter melon is meant to be used in conjunction with other preventive measures , along with conventional treatments when necessary. Here are some possible side effects and precautions to consider before using bitter melon products:
- While this melon has proven hypoglycemic;effects, available scientific data is not sufficient;to recommend its use for treating diabetes without;careful supervision and monitoring. The Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center concludes that bitter melon cannot be recommended as a replacement therapy for insulin or hypoglycemic drugs at this time, so if youre pre-diabetic or diabetic, its best to talk to your doctor about using bitter melon extract in addition to your current treatment plan. Because bitter melon lowers blood sugar, it can interact with medications for diabetes. If you take diabetes medications keep in mind it might lower your blood sugar too much, and therefore monitoring is recommended.
- Pregnant women, those who are trying to become pregnant, and women who are breastfeeding should not consume bitter melon, since research shows that it has some;abortifacient properties , can cause menstrual bleeding, and has certain anti-fertility capabilities.
- If youve recently undergone surgery, have been fasting, or lost substantial blood for another reason, bitter melon should be avoided, since it can interfere with blood sugar control and cause side effects like dizziness or fainting.
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Bitter Melon And Diabetes
Bitter melon is a plant that gets its name from its taste. It becomes more and more bitter as it ripens.
It grows in a number of areas, including Asia, South America, the Caribbean, and East Africa. People have used bitter melon for a variety of medical conditions over time.
Bitter melon contains many nutrients that can be beneficial to your health. Its linked to lowering blood sugar, which some studies suggest means it can aid in diabetes treatment.
Bitter melon is considered a complementary or alternative medicine. Therefore, the use of bitter melon isnt approved by the Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of diabetes or any other medical condition.
Diabetes Study Dosages Reviewed
You will find nearly one thousand pieces of medical literature on the Momordica charantia plant in the PubMed database. Thirteen of them are peer-reviewed human clinical trials. All but three are related to blood sugar. The others are cancer, metabolic syndrome, and blood pressure.
The first diabetic study was in 1977 and it was conducted by a medical college in Jaipur, India. They reported:
This extract was homologous to insulin obtained from animal pancreas. It showed a consistent hypoglycaemic effect in patients with diabetes mellitus.
How long does it take for bitter melon to lower blood sugar?
Nine patients tested included those with type 1 diabetes and type 2. A fasting blood sugar sample was measured at 7 am, followed by a bitter melon dosage of 10-30 units via injection. The lowering effect was seen within 30 to 60 minutes. Peak effect was at 4 hours in those with juvenile diabetes and 6 to 12 hours for those with adult onset and chemical diabetes .
Throughout the study, they called it vegetable insulin. Note they didnt use the whole fruit or leaves, as it was compounds isolated from the fruit.
Does drinking bitter melon juice work?
This was published in the British Medical Journal.
The third and last study from last century was published in 1999. It was much larger, with 100 cases of non-insulin dependent diabetics. Drinking the vegetable pulp produced hypoglycemic benefits in 86% of patients. 5% showed a lowering of fasting blood glucose only.
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