Ash Gourd: Health benefits, nutrients & uses

Medically Reviewed by Checkmark Medically Reviewed By: Sheela Krishnaswamy
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Last Updated on May 5, 2023 by Shabnam Sengupta

Ash gourd is a common vegetable grown throughout India, particularly in the state of Kerala. Indians commonly use it in cooking and confectionery. You will also find its reference in ayurvedic medicine due to its medicinal qualities. Hairy melon, fuzzy melon, ash pumpkin, gourd, winter melon, white gourd, tallow gourd, white pumpkin, and Chinese preserving melon are all different names for it. People in the southern part of India use ash gourd for various curries. In northern India, it is used for the famous and scrumptious ‘Agra Petha’. Ash gourd is said to have a lot of health benefits.

Health benefits of ash gourd

Helps control diabetes

Ash gourd contains 92% water and 8% fibre. Researchers regard it as one of the healthiest vegetables for diabetes prevention. It is diabetes friendly due to its low concentration of glucose and low glycemic index. Research shows that extract of ash gourd significantly decreases elevated blood glucose levels. This glucose lowering activity is due to the presence of antioxidants such as flavonoids, tannins, phenols, glycosides and alkaloids present in the plant. 

Packed with antioxidants

Ash gourds have antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-ulcer properties, because polyphenols, flavonoids, and anthocyanins are present in it. As a result, they have the potential to reduce inflammation and combat cell damage. 

Helps calm the body

Ash gourds have sedative effects. It gives the body a calm and relaxing sensation. Regular use of ash gourds may help improve mild symptoms of epilepsy, neurosis, paranoia, anxiety and insomnia.

Improves respiratory processes

Ash gourd is known for its anti-asthmatic properties. It helps control common cold, cough, fever, sinusitis, bronchitis, influenza, improves lung function and reduces allergies. Ash gourds help in the release of mucus in the lungs and nose. This is because the vegetable has expectorant properties (discharge of mucus from the respiratory tract). It promotes breathing and reduces excessive mucus secretion.

 Helps in kidney detoxification

Ash gourds are diuretic in nature, which means it increases urine production excreting toxins out ensuring optimal hydration of the body. Juice of ash gourd increases salt excretion that helps maintain blood pressure. It also helps in detoxification of the kidneys and bladder to do their daily functions. On top of that, studies also show that it can lower blood urea, blood creatinine, urinary glucose, urinary potassium level, creatinine, and total blood protein levels. 

Conclusion

In conclusion, there is a wide use of ash gourd in traditional medicine to prevent or treat a variety of diseases. In addition, ash gourd can help in digestion, reduce inflammation, and protect against infection, ulcers, and type 2 diabetes. There’s no harm in giving ash gourds a try, even if it’s just to add diversity to your diet or an interesting twist to your cuisine.

However, you must consult a dietitian before incorporating any food in your diet before consumption.

FAQ on Ash Gourd

Should I eat Ash Gourd if I have a heart condition?

Yes. Ash gourds have a lot of potassium. It works as a vasodilator that helps in lowering blood pressure by releasing the pressure in the blood arteries and veins. This allows blood to circulate freely throughout the body, lowering the danger of a coronary heart illness.

Should I eat Ash Gourd if I have a kidney problem?

Yes. Consuming ash gourd helps in maintaining blood pressure and lowering cholesterol levels, which are good for the kidneys. It effectively enhances immunity and renal function. Ash gourd, which acts as a diuretic, greatly aids in detoxifying the body by removing toxic waste through the urine or stool.

Should I eat Ash Gourd if I have a liver problem?

Yes. According to studies, ash gourd possesses anti-inflammatory and antioxidant qualities that help in fat and bile excretion, hence aiding in the treatment of liver problems.

Should I eat Ash Gourd if I have diabetes?

Yes. The therapeutic and medicinal qualities of ash gourd help in diabetes significantly. Ash gourds are low in calories, and have low glycemic index. Therefore, it can be included in a diabetic's diet under the supervision of a doctor.

Should I eat Ash Gourd if I have high cholesterol?

Yes. Ash gourd has lipid-lowering characteristics and high dietary fibre that helps in lowering serum cholesterol and lipid levels.

Should I eat Ash Gourd if my bones are weak?

Yes. Ash gourd soothes bone and muscular pain and treats joint problems such as arthritis, osteoporosis, gout, and fractures. Furthermore, it contains three key bone-fortifying minerals, i.e., calcium, magnesium, and phosphorus, which enhance bone mass and allow muscles and joints to regain flexibility.

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Last Updated on May 5, 2023 by Shabnam Sengupta

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

Last Updated on May 5, 2023 by Shabnam Sengupta

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

Last Updated on May 5, 2023 by Shabnam Sengupta

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

Last Updated on May 5, 2023 by Shabnam Sengupta

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

Last Updated on May 5, 2023 by Shabnam Sengupta

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

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Last Updated on May 5, 2023 by Shabnam Sengupta

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

Last Updated on May 5, 2023 by Shabnam Sengupta

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

Last Updated on May 5, 2023 by Shabnam Sengupta

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

Last Updated on May 5, 2023 by Shabnam Sengupta

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

Last Updated on May 5, 2023 by Shabnam Sengupta

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

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Garima Dev Verman
Garima Dev Verman
A qualified and experienced dietitian, Garima is analyses and fact checks content around diet and nutrition.
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