bitter melon

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bitter melon

1. A tropical annual vine (Momordica charantia) native to Asia, having yellow flowers and orange, warty fruits that open at maturity to expose red-coated seeds. Various parts of the plant are used in traditional medicine or for food.
2. The immature green fruit of this plant, eaten as a vegetable. In both senses also called bitter gourd.

bitter melon

The fruit of a Chinese vine related to cucumbers, administered in tea, capsules or retention enemas, which allegedly “purifies” blood, prevents viral infections and has antiretroviral activity. It has been used for managing diabetes, gastrointestinal complaints and cancer.

bit·ter mel·on

(bit'ĕr mel'ŏn)
Momordica charantia, tropical fruit that is typically consumed as a juice, although sometimes eaten. Limited studies suggest use in Type 2 diabetes; also purportedly of value as an antiinfective.

bitter melon,

n Latin name:
Momordica charantia L.; parts used: fruit, seeds, seed oil, leaves; uses: antidiabetic, antiinfective, antipyretic, anthelmintic, laxative, possible antifungal, androgenic, antiviral, antimalarial actions; possibly useful for infertility; precautions: pregnancy, lactation, children, patients taking hypoglycemic medications; may cause uterine bleeding or contractions, hepatotoxicity; seeds are toxic to children. Also called
balsam apple, balsam pear, bitter cucum-ber, bitter pear, carilla cundeamor, fu gwa, or
Enlarge picture
Bitter melon.


1. an austere and unpalatable taste like that of quinine.
2. a medicinal and culinary agent used as a tonic, alterative or appetizer.

bitter almond
a variety of Prunus amygdalus, the almond tree. Grown for the production of almond oil. The kernel of its seed contains sufficient cyanogenetic glycoside to be a possible cause of cyanide poisoning. The smell of bitter almonds is often quoted as being a characteristic finding in cases of cyanide poisoning in animals.
bitter bark
see alstoniaconstricta.
bitter melon
bitter rubberweed
bitter sneezeweed
bitter vetch
References in periodicals archive ?
Add the karela and mix over low heat, adding salt and pepper to taste.
The termite Heterotermes indicola as a pest of the vegetable, Karela or Bitter Gourd (Momordica-Charantia), in the Indian Desert.
Muchos casos semejantes pueden ser mencionados: el del arroz basmati, el del turmerico, el de la arogyapaacha, el del jugo de karela y el de Phyllanthus amarus.
Bitter gourd or Karela is seasonal vegetable and very bitter in taste.
Among them, Momordica charantia (family Cucurbitaceae), commonly known as kugua, karela, bitter gourd or bitter melon) is the most popular herbal resource (Manes & Farnsworth, 1995).
It's Pure Herbs like Neem, Lasuna, Shallaki, Ashwagandha, Karela as well as the Dental Cream, Hair Loss Cream and Shampoos are among its top sellers.
The utilization of healthcare facilities under RSBY scheme is highest in the state of Karela (Table 1).
Momordica charantia (family Cucurbitaceae, commonly known as ku gua, bitter melon, karela or bitter gourd) was purchased from a local market in N.
The bitter gourd - called karela back in India and, no, it has nothing to do with Kerala and is, in fact, a pan-Indian phrase - is supposed to be a blood purifier, which is why I suppose it tastes so bad and so bitter.
Exotic vegetables also have an important part to play in imparting taste and texture with widespread use of arabi, duddi, karela, mooli and rivye.