Ampalaya [Scientific name: Momordica charantia]
How can bitter gourd (ampalaya) help our body?
Ampalaya is a remarkable health food. Historically, bitter gourd has been around for quite a long time, more than the time of the parents of our great grand parents, I believe. However it was only during the early 1940s that health information on ampalaya got into scientific literature. What we also know is that bitter gourd (or variety of bitter gourd) is heavily consumed by the Amazons and Brazilian indigenous people. So that this vegetable has a long history of being a safe food and a health tonic.
Although animal studies have shown that ampalaya lowers blood glucose, thereâ€™s still a lack of a â€œlarge enough studyâ€ that fully document the benefits of ampalaya. Be as it may, there have been â€œlarge enoughâ€ anecdotes that claim that ampalaya is beneficial in diabetes, alone or in combination with medicines prescribed by doctors. Even more interesting is the report that amplaya lowers the fat in our blood and makes us resistant to infections, both viral and bacterial. To some extent, historically, people have used the juice of bitter gourd as topical medicine for wounds. If this is not enough, know this: there are now reports that ampalaya can protect us from developing cancer in the same way our body naturally protects itself against emerging cancer cells. These would mean that ampalaya enhances our immune system to fight cancer and infections. Isnâ€™t it that great? Why wait to get sick? Start taking ampalaya supplements as early as possible. Ampalaya is also rich in antioxidants that protect the cells of the body from damage of free radicals (metabolic by-products, usually waste).
How should we use it?
For people who are well, eating ampalaya as part of the diet is very important. However, one would soon succumb to boredom in eating ampalaya, so it becomes less interesting to eat and you may run out of recipes. If you can eat it raw, the better but better is bitter. So we get into the convenience of ampalaya in capsules. Not just 500 mg per capsule; as we know that is the minimum. Be informed of the products out in the market; choose the one that can give you more per capsule. Otherwise you end up popping up so many capsules a day.
The bottom line is: use ampalaya to prevent disease rather than a cure for disease. Curing disease is more expensive than preventing disease, so, for those who have a family history of diabetes and cancer, take ampalaya capsules now as part of your dietary supplement. Start bringing back what we lose in processed food.