Health benefits of Ash gourd

  • Author :
  • TATA AIG Team
  • Published on :
  • 29/11/2023

Ash Gourd, otherwise referred to as winter melon, white gourd, Chinese watermelon, etc., is a fruit native to South and Southeast Asia. It is a round or oblong melon recognised by its pale green skin. It is also commonly considered a vegetable in India, where it is widely cultivated.

It is rich in essential vitamins, minerals and antioxidants and has several medicinal properties. According to Ayurveda, ash gourd juice benefits people immensely when consumed regularly on an empty stomach.

In this blog, we will discuss the benefits of ash gourd juice – its nutritional value, its role in traditional medicine like Ayurveda, how best to consume it and when, so you can stay healthy and fit.

Ash Gourd Nutrition Breakdown

Ash gourds are composed of 96% water. They have a neutral taste similar to cucumbers and can be blended easily into a drink/juice for easy consumption.

Like most vegetables in the gourd family, the ash gourd’s flesh, stem, seeds and leaves are enriched with nutrients and minerals. Here is a more comprehensive breakdown of the ash gourd’s nutritional value:

Amount: Per 100 grams 
Calories 13 Kcal
Carbohydrates 3g
Protein 0.4 g
Total Fat 0.2 g
Cholesterol 0 mg
Dietary Fiber 2.9 g
Vitamins B1 0.04 mg 
Vitamin B3  0.528 mg 
Vitamin B2 0.145 mg 
Vitamin C  17.2 mg 
Vitamin B6 0.046 mg
Vitamin B5  0.176 mg 
Calcium    0.051
Magnesium  0.067
Phosphorus 0.05
Zinc 0.072
Iron    0.057
Iodine  0.059
Manganese     0.125

Ash Gourd Benefits in Ayurveda

There are many ways to consume ash gourd, but juicing is by far the best way, as it allows you to consume more of the fruit.

Here are some benefits of drinking ash gourd juice on an empty stomach:

Better Digestion: Ash gourds are high in fibre, which can help promote the growth of good bacteria. This, in turn, can help decrease constipation, bloating and stomach cramps.

Helps with Acidity: Ash gourds are naturally alkaline and consuming ash gourd juice regularly helps neutralise excess acidity in your stomach, relieving indigestion, heartburn and bloating.

Improves Lung Health: Ash gourd is said to have an expectorant quality. This means it can help release any excess phlegm or mucous secretion from your respiratory tract. It can also be beneficial for allergies.

Increases Energy Levels: The vitamin B3 present in ash gourds helps with increasing energy levels, making it beneficial for those suffering from anaemia or body weakness.

Excellent for Treating Stomach Ulcers: Regular consumption of ash gourds helps protect the stomach lining, which can aid in preventing and treating peptic ulcers.

Anti-Coagulant Properties: People who regularly consume blood thinners like aspirin can benefit from adding ash gourd into their diet, which can help control excessive bleeding. It can also help prevent nose bleeds.

Cooling Effect on the Body: Like cucumbers, ash gourds have high water content. So, consuming ash gourd juice during the summer months can prevent dehydration. Moreover, it is also said to increase the sharpness of the mind, keeping you more alert.

Treats Dandruff: It can help treat topical scalp constants like dandruff. The oil prepared by boiling ash gourd seeds with coconut oil may help alleviate symptoms like itchiness or dryness.

Fights Jaundice: Ash gourds contain cucurbitacins, which help aid liver functions and boost immunity. Moreover, the Vitamin C found in its leaves help further boost your immune system.

An Ayurvedic remedy of crushing the leaves along with coriander seeds and consuming it twice every day is said to help treat jaundice.

Promotes Joint Health: The calcium, magnesium and phosphorous in ash gourds help increase bone mass and regain joint flexibility. The juice also has anti-inflammatory properties, which can help with joint pain and inflammation.

May Help with Food Poisoning: Ash gourd juice may help with food poisoning, as drinking the juice can help replenish your electrolyte levels. However, if you find your symptoms worsening and not alleviating with time, seek medical help.

Ash Gourd Juice Benefits: Other Potential Uses

Ash gourd juice is great for various ailments, as stated above. It could also help manage certain conditions like diabetes when taken in moderation.

However, as with any chronic condition, you must consult your doctor before proceeding, as you could react adversely, especially if you are already on prescription medication. Here are some potential benefits you may find insightful:

Ash Gourd for Diabetes

There is some data that suggests that ash gourd’s flesh and seeds are beneficial for diabetes patients. The fruit has natural hypoglycemia-tackling abilities, meaning it helps maintain sugar levels.

They are also low in calories and contain vital nutrients, making them a healthy addition to any meal. Moreover, its high fibre content is also great for slowing down the absorption rate of sugar into the bloodstream.

Ash Gourd for Kidneys

Ash gourd may benefit kidney function by minimising toxicity caused by medications like paracetamol. Due to its high water content, it could also lower blood urea and creatinine levels, urinary glucose and potassium levels, and body weight.

However, these effects require more research. Always consult the doctor and do not self-medicate, especially if you have kidney disease or chronic health conditions.

Ash Gourd for Asthma

Ash gourd contains active components like Multiflorenol and Alonusenol, which may inhibit histamine, which could help in cases of bronchitis but could act adversely with asthma.

Any respiratory condition is a serious illness, and you must never attempt to self-medicate conditions like asthma. Always consult your doctor before proceeding.

Ash Gourd Benefits and Side Effects

While the ash gourd is a great inclusion into any diet, too much of a good thing may do more harm in certain circumstances. Hence, we recommend consuming it in moderation. Here are some common side effects of overconsumption:

  • Drinking ash gourd juice daily can lead to an accumulation of heavy metals like cadmium or chromium in your body.

  • Ash gourds a popular for their cooling effect on the body. Hence, people with fevers are advised against eating or drinking it, as it can slow recovery.

  • Excessive consumption can cause problems for people with asthma and bronchitis.

If you suffer from any pre-existing medical conditions, are on any medication or have any dietary restrictions, always consult with your doctor before adding ash gourd into your diet.

Drinking the ash gourd juice without expert advice could react badly with your medication, resulting in side effects.

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These were some key ash gourd benefits and side effects. Ash gourds are high in fibre and help fight stomach ulcers, aid in weight loss and help cool down the body during harsh Indian summers. They are also abundantly available in India.

While the indicated benefits do need further research, there is also no harm in giving this exotic fruit a try – granted, you take the necessary precautions stated in this blog. You can even incorporate it to add some variety to your diet.

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