Bitter Melon

Family: Cucurbitaceae

Genus: Momordica
Species: charantia

Synonyms: Momordica chinensis, M. elegans, M. indica, M. operculata, M. sinensis, Sicyos fauriei

Common Names: bitter melon, papailla, melao de sao caetano, bittergourd, balsam apple, balsam pear, karela, k'u kua kurela, kor-kuey, ku gua, pava-aki, salsamino, sorci, sorossi, sorossie, sorossies, pare, peria laut, peria
Part Used: whole plant, fruit, see

BITTER MELON ( leaf/stem )
Main Preparation Method: leaf decoction or capsules
Main Actions (in order):
anticancerous, antiviral, antibacterial, digestive stimulant, hypoglycemic
Main Uses:
1. for cancer
2. for viral infections (HIV, herpes, Epstein Barr, hepatitis, influenza, and measles)
3. for bacterial infections (Staphylococcus, Streptococcus, and Salmonella)
4. as a bitter digestive aid (for dyspepsia and sluggish digestion)
5. for diabetes

Properties/Actions Documented by Research:
antibacterial, anticancerous, anti-fertility, antileukemic, antiprotozoal, antitumorous, antiviral, hypoglycemic, immune stimulant

Other Properties/Actions Documented by Traditional Use:
antifungal, anti-inflammatory, antimalarial, antiparasitic, antiseptic, bitter, carminative (expels gas), digestive stimulant, febrifuge (reduces fever), hypotensive (lowers blood pressure), lactagogue (promotes milk flow), menstrual stimulator, purgative, vermifuge (expels worms), wound healer
Cautions: It may lower blood sugar levels.

BITTER MELON ( fruit/fruit seed )
Main Preparation Method: fruit juice

Main Actions (in order):
hypoglycemic, hypocholesterolemic (lowers cholesterol), antibacterial, carminative (expels gas), bitter

Main Uses:
1. for diabetes
2. for high cholesterol and triglyceride levels
3. for H. pylori ulcers
4. as a bitter digestive aid for intestinal gas, bloating, stomachache, and sluggish digestion
5. for intestinal parasites

Properties/Actions Documented by Research:
abortive, contraceptive, antimicrobial, hypocholesterolemic (lowers cholesterol), hypoglycemic

Other Properties/Actions Documented by Traditional Use:
antifungal, antiparasitic, antivenin, bitter, cardiotonic (tones, balances, strengthens the heart), digestive stimulant, emetic (causes vomiting), menstrual stimulator, purgative (strong laxative), vermifuge (expels worms)

Cautions: It lowers blood sugar levels and has abortive and contraceptive effects.

Bitter gourd (boiled, drained, no salt)

  • Nutritional value per 100 g (3.5 oz)
  • Energy 20 kcal 80 kJ
  • Carbohydrates 4.32 g
  • Sugars 1.95 g
  • Dietary fiber 2.0 g
  • Fat 0.18 g
  • saturated 0.014 g
  • monounsaturated 0.033 g
  • polyunsaturated 0.078 g
  • Protein 0.84 g
  • Water 93.95 g
Vitamin A equiv. 6 μg 1%, Thiamine (Vit. B1) 0.051 mg 4%, Riboflavin (Vit. B2) 0.053 mg 4%, Niacin (Vit. B3) 0.280 mg 2%, Vitamin B6 0.041 mg 3%, Folate (Vit. B9) 51 μg 13%, Vitamin B12 0 μg 0%, Vitamin C 33.0 mg 55%, Vitamin E 0.14 mg 1%, Vitamin K 4.8 μg 5%, Calcium 9 mg 1%, Iron 0.38 mg 3%, Magnesium 16 mg 4%, Phosphorus 36 mg 5%, Potassium 319 mg 7%, Sodium 6 mg 0%, Zinc 0.77 mg 8%.

Percentages are relative to US
recommendations for adults.
Source: USDA Nutrient database


  1. Hallo kibagus..

    hehehe...baru tau ternyata pare itu nya bitter melon ya...
    kenapa harus melon pahit ya??
    Buah/sayur ini salah satu yg paling aku hindari kalo makan siomay. :)

    Oiya,,aku punya 15 hamster.

  2. it is also known as bitter gourd


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