Figleaf gourd is not commonly known by most people. But for those who familiar with this fruit, knows that there are some health benefits of figleaf gourd. Especially for those who live in Latin America. Since this fruit is originally comes from northern Chile and Argentina to Mexico.
This fruit is started to be popular in America by the 17th century. Therefore, it is also known as Malabar Gourd. It is included as cucumber family and able to grow up to 12 pounds. The plant is easy to grow. It is more like standard melons, which need regular water, full of sunlight and enough space to grow. The plant can climb, but normally grown in ground. Compare with melon, this plant is having more tolerance to disease.
Figleaf gourd also known as super food, due to contain many protein and also fat inside their seed. The same as pulses plant, you may know the Health Benefits of Pulses. The flesh is firm and has a white colour. While the leaf also can be extracted for a healthy supplement too. Therefore, many peoples expand their research to this plant so that they can get more health benefits of figleaf gourd.
Nutritional Value of Figleaf Gourd
Below is the nutritional value of 1 pc of figleaf gourd (100gr):
- Calories 14Kcal
- Total Fat 0.02gr
- Cholesterol 0mg
- Sodium 2mg
- Potassium 150mg
- Carbohydrates 3.39gr
- Dietary Fibers 0.5gr
- Sugar 0.8gr
- Protein 0.62gr
- Calcium 26mg
- Iron 0.20mg
- Magnesium 11mg
- Phosporus 13mg
- Zinc 0.70mg
- Vitamin A 16IU
- Riboflavin (Vitamin B2) 0.029mg
- Pyridoxine (Vitamin B6) 0.04mg
- Ascorbic Acid (Vitamin C) 10.1mg
*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs. Below are health benefits of figleaf gourd:
1. Control Sugar Level
Figleaf gourd seeds has been proven able to rejuvenate insulin producing cells of pancreas. Therefore, it can help to maintain the blood glucose level in the body. It is also containing polysaccharide sugar which able to restore pancreatic tissue. Hence, the pancreas circulation can be improved. It is the same Health Benefits of Okra for Diabetes which help to control blood sugar too.
2. Prevent Diabetes
Due to the capability of controlling sugar level in the blood, therefore, this can be useful to prevent diabetes.
3. Maintain Healthy Liver
Figleaf gourd help to maintain healthy liver. It helps to optimize the metabolism of eliminate toxin from the body.
4. Maintain Healthy Bone
Since the fruit is rich with calcium, therefore it is good for maintain a healthy bone. It also supplies the necessity of minerals needed for the bone fracture. Hence, it produces a strength bone.
The fruit contain flavonoids, tannin and alkaloids which are useful to eliminate bacteria from the body. It acts against various pathogenic infection and give effects as anti-microbial to various bacteria. Therefore, it can help the body to avoid disease and bring a fast cure during illness. This is the same benefit as Health Benefits Arnica.
It can works as an anti-depressant. Therefore, it give a relief feeling to the nerve and bring calm feeling. It is a quite good treatment for people with symptoms of insomnia. It gives a pleasant feeling. Hence, it optimize a good quality of sleep.
7. Relief Fever
The figleaf gourd can help for fever relief treatment. It helps to restore the body temperature into normal temperature. Therefore, it is suitable as preliminary treatment for fast recovery of influenza.
8. Treatment for Heatiness
This fruit is well known can used as a treatment for heatiness. The fruit works to calm down the heat inside the stomach. It is absorbing the heat and bring coldness into the body. Therefore, it is suitable to treat the heatiness effect to the body.
9. Weight Loss
The seed of figleaf gourd has been known can help for a weight loss. This is due to the nutrient value which low in carbohydrates and high in protein. Therefore, it improve the body metabolism to only absorb important nutrients and avoid body to gaining unnecessary weight.
Furthermore, it can prevent cardiovascular disease such as heart attack and stroke. This benefit is as the same with Benefits of Black Coffee for Weight Loss.
10. Treatment of Constipation
The fruit can help to treat constipation due to the laxative effect. It is protecting the stomach wall. Hence, the stomach wouldn’t produce too many acid and gas. Therefore, it helps to eliminate constipation and maintain a healthy stomach.
11. Improve Digestive System
The fruit contain a lot of of dietary fiber. Therefore, it improves the digestive system. It helps to improve the body metabolism and bring a fast digest. Furthermore, it works by only absorbing the important nutrients into the body. It optimize the peristaltic movement and maintain the intestine health.
Figleaf fruit is rich with isoflavone that can be works as an anti-oxidant. The same as Health Benefits of Green Mango. Therefore, it gives a pleasant feeling to the body. It helps to eliminate the effect of free radical. Furthermore, it maintains the body and prevent an early aging. Hence, the body will always look younger and health.
The fruit is a good anti-inflammatory. Hence, it can help to cure a sore throat by reducing the sore inflammation and lead to a fasten cure. It relief the pain by controlling the nerve to bring a relaxation against illness. Therefore, it is a good way to against inflammation.
14. Imboost Immunity
Since the fruit is rich with vitamin C, therefore it helps to imboost the immunity system. Hence, it helps to against bacterial infection. It maintains the body health as in natural way.
15. Treatment for Bronchitis
Due to the capability of anti-bacteria and anti-inflammatory, the fruits are a good choice to treat bronchitis. It helps to relief the pain and maintain the health of respiratory system. Furthermore, it leads to a fast cure of this disease.
How to Use Figleaf Gourd
Figleaf gourd can be consumed in many ways. Below is the way to consume figleaf gourd:
It is quite simple to get the figleaf gourd fruit and then blend it as a juice. For fresher flavor you can add mint leaf. This juice can also mixed with other fruits such as orange, lemon or strawberry. As a reference, you may want to see the Health Benefits of Wild Strawberry.
In Asia, it is common to make a soup from figleaf gourd fruit. At the younger stage, it can be consuming directly like a cucumber. The mature one is boiled and mix in a sour soup. There are so many soup recipes for the gourd. Start from the light one up to the creamy soup. It taste bitter and cold once it is cooked.
Some people use the green parts of the plant and the flowers as mix in a salad. It can be sprinkled over a chicken salad or mix with vegetables salad. The flesh from the fruit also can be consuming as part of the salad.
The leaf can be useful as an extract of herbal tea. It is an easy way preparing a homemade tea. Boil some water. Put some leaf in the tea cup. Pour out the boiling water and wait for 5-10 minutes. After that, add some honey or lemon for a better flavor. You can see the Health Benefits of Honey for Skin. Finally, the tea is ready to serve. This will bring benefit as Health Benefit of Chai Tea Latte, which is work as an anti-oxidant.
Another creation in using gourd is for desserts. It can cook as a cookie, cakes, jams, spreads, and even candy. In Mexico there is a dessert from its seeds called peanut brittle. While in other countries the gourd is make as a special jam. The favorite one is making it as a gourd pudding.
Side Effects of Figleaf Gourd
Figleaf Gourd have some side effects. Therefore, before consuming this fruit, you may need to pay attention on below cautions:
- People with allergically reactions shall be careful while consuming the fruit. Since it can bring allergically reactions such as rash, itchiness and might lead to asthma. Therefore, consulting with the doctor is important to check the right portion to consume the fruit.
- The fruit may interfere with doctor prescription for diabetic patients. Therefore, it is suggested that people under treatments of medicine shall avoid this fruit. Otherwise it can interfere the medication and will reduce the effectiveness of the medicine.
- There is no evidence that figleaf gourd is danger to consume by pregnant woman. But to avoid the negative effect effect, better not to consume this fruit during pregnancy.
- Some reports mention that the leaf may be poisonous if consume together with other leaf. Therefore, when extracting the leaf for tea, it is better not to mix with any other herbal leaf.
- There is an evidence that the seed produces a toxic substance. Hence, it is better to remove the seed before consuming the fruit.