WHAT IS BITTER MELON EXTRACT?
Bitter melon, formally known as Momordica charantia and commonly referred to as bitter gourd, is a tropical vine plant in the gourd family, which also includes vegetables such as zucchini, squash, pumpkin, and cucumber. Its fruit, which is widely grown and consumed due to its unique and strong flavour, is an important ingredient in many Asian cuisines. Bitter melon comes in a multitude of types that differ in size, shape, colour, and texture. For example, the Indian type is thinner, with pointy ends and a rind ornamented with rough, jagged spikes, while the Chinese version is distinguished by its long, pale green fruit covered in wart-like bumps.
Bitter melon is well known for its connections to several possible health benefits, even outside of its culinary applications. The fruit is highly valued for its abundance of other vital minerals and for its high concentration of vitamin A and Vitamin C. Furthermore, studies have focused on the phytonutrients and bioactive chemicals found in bitter melon because of their possible health-promoting properties. It’s important to remember that bitter melon, as its name implies, has a strong, slightly acquired flavour that not everyone will enjoy.
WHAT IS BITTER MELON GOOD FOR?
Bitter melon has become well-known for its exceptional health benefits in addition to being an integral component in many Asian cuisines. Here are a few of its main health benefits:
- May help in Blood sugar management: The extract from bitter melon has garnered attention due to its possible role in the treatment of diabetes. Studies have shown that taking 2,000 mg of bitter melon daily will significantly lower blood sugar levels and haemoglobin A1c, a crucial indicator of blood sugar control, during a three-month period. One such study included 24 persons with diabetes. Another study including forty diabetics found that consuming 2,000 mg of bitter melon every day for four weeks resulted in a significant drop in fructosamine levels, a short-term indicator of long-term blood sugar control, as well as a moderate drop in blood sugar levels. The bitter melon’s potential to improve tissue sugar absorption and increase insulin secretion—the hormone in charge of controlling blood sugar—is the mechanism behind these effects.
- May fight cancer: Test-tube research suggest that bitter melon extract may have anti-cancer effects. It has shown promise in preventing cancer cells from proliferating and growing in a number of physiological regions, including the lung, stomach, colon, and nasopharynx. Additionally, investigations conducted in both animal models and test tubes demonstrated that bitter melon extract increased cell death within breast cancer cells in addition to preventing their growth and spread. It is noteworthy that in these investigations, strong concentrations of bitter melon extract were applied to isolated cells in a laboratory environment. More research involving human subjects is required to determine how bitter melon impacts cancer growth and progression in humans when consumed as part of a usual diet.
- May benefit cardiovascular health: Another possible benefit of bitter melon extract for heart health is its ability to lower cholesterol levels. Increased risk of heart disease can result from high cholesterol because it can cause fatty plaque to build up in the arteries. Bitter melon may help maintain heart health generally by lowering cholesterol levels, according to a number of animal studies. Water-soluble bitter melon extract was given to participants in a human trial, and the results showed significant decreases in LDL or “bad” cholesterol levels when compared to a placebo. It’s important to remember, though, that not every study has produced reliable findings. For example, a study conducted on mice did not demonstrate any improvement in the development of atherosclerosis or cholesterol levels. Therefore, more research is required to ascertain whether these beneficial benefits on decreasing cholesterol are regularly shown in people who consume bitter melon as part of their daily diet.
Even though bitter melon extract has potential for many health benefits, more studies are need to confirm these benefits in larger human populations. These early results demonstrate the bitter melon’s promise as a homoeopathic treatment for cholesterol management, blood sugar regulation, and cancer prevention. To validate these effects and offer thorough instructions for adding bitter melon to a balanced diet or as a supplement, additional thorough, superior research is required.
HOW DOES BITTER MELON EXTRACT WORK IN HUMAN BODY?
It is thought that bitter melon extract works to regulate blood sugar in a number of different manners. Cucurbitane-type triterpenoids are a class of compounds that are one of the main ingredients of bitter melon. These compounds have been linked to improved insulin sensitivity, which is important for controlling blood sugar levels. By promoting the activation of specific enzymes involved in the insulin signalling pathway, bitter melon extract may also help move glucose from the blood into cells. Lower blood sugar levels and better sugar absorption follow from this. Bitter melon’s anti-hyperglycemic properties are further enhanced by the abundance of plant chemicals such charantin, which have been demonstrated to lessen the absorption of sugar from the intestines.
Polypeptide-p, a plant analogue of insulin, is another important component of bitter melon’s ability to reduce blood sugar levels. This peptide bears structural similarities to human insulin and may play a role in blood glucose regulation. It has been suggested that polypeptide-p functions similarly to insulin by attaching to insulin receptors and possibly enhancing cells’ absorption of glucose.
All of these complex pathways imply that extract from bitter melon may improve insulin sensitivity, decrease the absorption of glucose, and replicate the actions of insulin, all of which would improve blood sugar regulation. It is important to note that study on these systems is still ongoing, and further investigation is required to completely understand the precise mechanisms through which bitter melon extract influences blood sugar management.
HOW MUCH BITTER MELON EXTRACT CAN A PERSON TAKE?
It might be difficult to determine the right bitter melon extract dosage because it varies based on a number of variables such as age, general health, and specific medical issues. As of right now, bitter melon extract does not have a recommended dosage that is widely accepted. To find the appropriate dose for your unique situation, it is best to refer to the product label instructions or consult a healthcare professional, such as a doctor or a licenced herbalist.
When using bitter melon extract as a supplement, the usual recommended daily dosage is between 500 and 2,000 milligrams. To determine a person’s tolerance and effectiveness, it’s crucial to begin at the lower end of the dosage range and increase progressively as necessary. It is advisable to consult the product instructions or a healthcare expert before using bitter melon extract in different forms, such as tea or juice, as the recommended dosage may differ. Moreover, it is essential to keep an eye on your blood sugar levels when using bitter melon extract in order to make sure that it is properly controlling your blood sugar levels without having an unwanted effect.
WHAT ARE THE VARIATIONS OF BITTER MELON EXTRACT?
Bitter Melon Extract is also available as:
- Bitter Melon Extract 10% Bitters (Momordica charantia)
- Bitter Melon Extract 10% Charantin (Momordica charantia linn)
- Bitter Melon Extract 10:1 (Momordica charantia)
- Bitter Melon Extract 3% Bitters (Momordica charantia)
- Bitter Melon Extract 3% Charantin (Momordica charantia)
- Bitter Melon Extract 4:1 (Momordica charantia)
- Bitter Melon Extract 5% Bitters (Momordica charantia)
- Bitter Melon Fruit Powder (Momordica charantia)
Bitter Melon Extract is commonly available in:
- Bitter Melon Extract tablets
- Bitter Melon Extract capsules
- Bitter Melon powder extract
- Bitter Melon liquid extract
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