Food wise, I love anything bitter.
Its pungent taste, not too sweet or too sour.
My favourite bitter drink is Schweppes bitter lemon.
Bitter lemon is a carbonated soft drink flavoured with quinine and lemon. The signature bitter taste is produced by a combination of the quinine and the lemon pith used in manufacturing the drink.
I love bitter gourd. Bitter gourd (melon) is one of traditional edible pod vegetables in many Asian countries. It is grown widely as a field crop as well as backyard vegetable and, in fact, is among the most bitter tasting of all culinary vegetables.
This vegetable has numerous health benefits.
Health benefits of Bitter gourd
- Bitter melon is very low in calories, carrying just 17 calories per 100 g. Nevertheless, its pods are rich sources of phytonutrients like dietary fiber, minerals, vitamins, and anti-oxidants.
- Bitter melon notably contains phytonutrient, polypeptide-P, a plant insulin known to lower blood sugar levels. Also, it composes hypoglycemic agent called Charantin. Charantin increases glucose uptake and glycogen synthesis inside the cells of the liver, muscle, and fatty (adipose) tissue. Together, these compounds may have been thought to be responsible for blood sugar levels reduction in the treatment of type-2 diabetes.
- Fresh pods are an excellent source of folates, carrying about 72 µg/100g (18% of RDA). Vitamin folate when taken by mothers during their early pregnancy time, would help reduce the incidence of neural tube defects in the newborn babies.
- Fresh bitter melon is an excellent source of vitamin-C (100 grams of fresh pod provides 84 mg or about 140% of RDI). Vitamin-C is one of the powerful natural antioxidants which helps scavenge harmful free radicals from the human body.
- Further, it is an excellent source of health benefiting flavonoids such as β-carotene, α-carotene, lutein, and zea-xanthin. It also contains a good amount of vitamin-A. Together, these compounds help act as protective scavengers against oxygen-derived free radicals and reactive oxygen species (ROS) that play a role in aging, cancers and various disease processes.
- Bitter melon stimulates smooth digestion and peristalsis of food through the bowel until it excreted from the body. Thus, it helps in relieving indigestion and constipation problems.
- Further, it has small amounts of B-complex vitamins such as niacin (vitamin B-3), pantothenic acid (vitamin B-5), pyridoxine (vitamin B-6) and minerals such as iron, zinc, potassium, manganese and magnesium.
- Early laboratory tests suggest that certain phytochemical compounds in bitter melon might be effective in the treatment of HIV infection.
While bitterness is so favourable in food, it is not so in life experience. Many of us may encounter some bitter experiences at some stage in life.
Every uncomfortable experience in life gives you the choice of growing bitter or better.