Goya or Bitter melon (you may have also heard it referred to as Karela, Balsam Pear or Bitter Gourd), is commonly used for many different health benefits. The melon is a very helpful food, but it has an extremely bitter taste. On first look the Goya looks like a cucumber but with ugly gourd–like bumps all over it. It thrives in humid and hot climates, so they are commonly found in South America and Asian countries.
Dr. Frank Shallenberger M.D., who specializes in Anti Aging Treatment and Alternative Medicine at The Nevada Center of Alternative & Anti – Aging Medicine, has used the fruit to fight pancreatic cancer. Dr. Shallenberger has found bitter melon to be an effective tool in inhibiting cancer cell growth and advises his patients to go for natural substances that inhibit cancer cell growth.
During his latest research, Dr. Shallenberger found that when bitter melon juice is diluted to 5% in water, it proved to be very effective in fighting pancreatic cancer. Bitter melon was able to damage cancer cell lines by a rate of 90% and 98%. The University of Colorado tested bitter melon’s effect further and found a 64% reduction in the size of the pancreatic tumors.
Dr. Shallenberger’s research is just one of the many health benefits bitter melon has to offer. Bitter melon has also been used as a remedy for high blood pressure, asthma, skin infections, diabetes symptoms and stomach problems. The plant has been used as a traditional medicine in Africa, India, China and the southeastern US. Bitter melons contain high amounts of nutrients, but are very low in calories. It is an excellent source of magnesium, manganese, high dietary fiber, vitamins B1, B2, and B3, C, folate, zinc, and phosphorus. It contains twice the beta – carotene of broccoli, it is rich in iron, twice the potassium of a banana and twice the calcium of spinach. Even with all of the beneficial nutrients it has to offer, one negative about the bitter melon is that its bitter taste detracts a lot of people from consuming it.
Health Benefits of Bitter Melon
Best ways to consume bitter melon
Unlike some other vegetables and fruits it is best to pick a bitter melon that is firm and still green. You may want to avoid if the bitter melon is starting to turn orange or has soft spots (the more bitter the taste, the riper the melon gets).
It is best to clean your bitter melon under cold running water and brush with a soft vegetable brush.
It is definitely something worth trying, if you can withstand the bitter taste of this fruit. The beneficial nutrients alone make it worthy of consumption. It is an almost ideal food to include in your diet for additional health benefits.
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