Ridge gourd Benefits, Uses and possible Side Effects
There is no doubt about the health-related properties of vegetables. They are as beneficial for health as they enhance the taste of various dishes.
Ridge Gourd is an annual climbing plant. Its stem is 5-angled, with knots with ribs. The plant is like a creeper and its fruit is long-shaped. Ridge gourd is light green in color. The bark of this fruit is veined and these veins are joined on both ends. The mostly eaten part of this plant is the fruit. This fruit can be from medium green to dark green. The leaves of this plant are star-shaped or heart shaped. The front part of these leaves is dark green and the back side is relatively lighter in color. It has a lot of tendrils along with its leaves. The tree climbs with the help of these tendrils. The leaves of this tree are very thick and are accompanied by 5 petals of small yellow flowers. Both its male and female flowers are found in the same tree. The female flowers are attached to the front joint of the fruit and are accompanied by the male flower tendrils. This plant grows in summer.
Benefits of Ridge Gourd
The Ridge Gourd plant needs good extraction and soil rich in sand manure and organic matter with pH levels between 6.5-7.5. It is planted during July and January. About 1.5 kg of seed is required for a hectare. Trichoderma viride is tested by 4 g or pseudomonas fluorescent 10 g/kg seed before planting the seeds. The field is finely prepared to sow the seeds. The basin is formed by digging pits at a gap of 2.5*2 meters and in size 30 cm*30 cm*30 cm. The seeds (5 seeds/pits) are planted and down after 15 days by diluting the seedlings into two/pits. This plant needs a lot of water to grow well.
The following article will discuss about one of such beneficial veggie- Ridge Gourd and its benefits for our health.
Different regional names of Ridge Gourd
- Assamese: Jika
- Marathi: Kadhai, Dodka, Doadakee
- Hindi: Nenua, Gilki, Chikni turai, Toree, Torai, Kalitori Tharoayi
- Bengali: Jhinga
- Telugu: Ridj gorintaku, Neyangnattakolu, Beera Kayi
- Kannada: Hirekai
- Malayalam: Ridj mattanna, Peechinga
- Tamil: Pirkkankai
- Gujarati: Turia, Sirola
- Konkani: Ghossaley, Gosalen
- Odia : Janchi, Jahni
- Punjabi: Kalitori
- Tulu: Peerae
- Kashmiri: Turrei
Scientific Classification of Ridge Gourd
- Kingdom : Plantae
- Clade : Tracheophytes
- Clade : Angiosperms
- Clade : Eudicots
- Clade : Rosids
- Order : Cucurbitales
- Family : Cucurbitaceae
- Genus : Luffa
- Species : L. acutangula
- Scientific name: Luffa acutangula
Nutritious Elements presents in Ridge Gourd
The Nutrition value in every 100gms of Ridge Gourd is mentioned below:
- Energy : 65
- Fat : 0.3 gm
- Sodium : 21 mg
- Potassium : 453 mg
- Carbohydrate : 14 gm
- Fibre : 2.9 gm
- Sugar : 5 gm
- Protein : 0.7 gm
- Vitamin A : 260 IU
- Vitamin C : 9%
- Vitamin B6 : 5%
- Iron : 2%
- Magnesium : 5%
Benefits of Ridge Gourd
- Promotes Eye health:
A lot of vitamin A in Ridge gourd is in the form of beta carotene which contributes to improving vision even at an older age. They help prevent macular degeneration, partial blindness and other eye diseases. Being a valuable antioxidant, beta keratin frees the nerves and visible blood vessels of the eye from toxins, thereby protecting the eyes from harmful free radicals.
- Relieves Constipation:
There is plenty of water substance in the Sponge Gourd. In addition, the fleshy part of this veggie is rich in cellulose which is a natural dietary fiber. Therefore, eating this veggie can relieve constipation. Moreover, the benefits of ridge gourd are noted for normal bowel movement and digestion recovery.
- Keeps liver healthy:
Ridge gourd is believed to have the ability to purify the blood of toxic waste, alcohol residues and undigested food particles. It therefore plays an important role in improving liver health and bile function. Bile is a fluid wipe of the liver, which helps to break lipids or fats. It effectively treats jaundice and other infections that occur in the hepatic tube.
- Aids weight loss:
Ridge gourd has minimal calories and a negligible amount of saturated fats and cholesterol. As a result, protein, carbohydrates and fats in the food help in digestion after taking it immediately and also prevent excess fat accumulation in the body tissues. Along with this the veggie also helps to control blood sugar levels.
- Good for Diabetics:
The calories, sugars in Ridge gourd are naturally low, while the diet has a huge reserve of fiber, which helps in controlling appetite, controls premature cravings and regulates weight gain. Moreover, this fleshy green vegetable is full of phyto-nutrients that carry hypoglycemic properties, thus preventing sudden increase in blood sugar levels after meals in the body. Thus, Sponge Gourd stimulates digestive energy, metabolism, insulin activity and helps to keep diabetes under control.
- Shows positive effects in Anemia:
Regular consumption of Iron rich ridge gourd can cure anemia caused by iron deficiency. Also, The Vitamin B6 is abundant in this veggie which plays an important role in proper synthesis of red blood cells in the body along with iron. Therefore, it regulates blood flow to all organs of the body, reducing the symptoms of pain and depression.
- Revitalizes Skin:
Vitamin C and vitamin A antioxidants present in ridge gourd helps in removing harmful free radicals from the body, preventing oxidative damage to healthy skin tissue and detoxifying and purifying the blood. Including Sponge Gourd as part of a daily diet results in increased blood flow to skin cells, as well as it remedies infections, acne, dark spots, etc. to provide soft clean and glowing skin.
- Balances Body heat:
There is plenty of water in this veggie which gives a remarkable cooling effect and reduces the body’s extreme heat. In addition, ridge gourd holds a storehouse of minerals including potassium, sodium, zinc, copper, selenium. These help in reducing excess acidity in the body. As well as fighting water scarcity in the body it creates a beneficial alkaline environment in the body, restores the balance of electrolytes, fills the moisture and nutrients lost in the body.
Ridge gourd also has other health benefits such as, anti-inflammatory, anti-allergic, Cerebroprotective effects which can relieve inflammatory problems in the body, allergic reactions, etc.
Uses of Ridge Gourd
Ridge gourd is a nutritious and locally popular vegetable. It is commonly used for eating. Various nutrients present in it such as vitamins, proteins, fibers, sodium, potassium, iron, energy contribute to keeping our body healthy. It is added in various curry, fried dishes, salads etc. Sweets made of Sponge Gourd (such as- halwa) in some areas are very popular.
The juice of ridge gourd is also used as a home remedy in case of some physical difficulties.
Harmful Side Effects of Ridge Gourd
- There are many health benefits of sponge gourd as a food, but there is no accurate information on how safe its use is as a medicine.
- It is not well known whether it is safe to use ridge gourd charcoal for shingles.
- There is not enough information to know if it is safe to consume high-dose sponge gourd in pregnancy as medicine.
So expert or doctor advice should be taken before using the veggie as a medicine other than daily food.
The above article lets you know about the health benefits of ridge gourd and its other related information. Hope the information mentioned in this article benefits you in various ways. Thank you!
1) How long does it take to grow fruit from the ridge gourd seedlings?
A. Plants bear flowers within 80-90 days from the seedlings; it has both male and female flowers in the same plant. Fruits will form on female flowers after pollen.
2) What is the scientific name of ridge gourd?
A. The scientific name of ridge gourd is ‘Luffa acutangula’.
3) Does eating Ridge gourd lead to gas formation?
A- Eating vegetables with low carbohydrates or mainly water-based vegetables often lead to less stomach bloating. Ridge gourd is one such veggie.
4) Can I eat Ridge gourd in raw form?
A. By removing the bark, the freshly harvested Ridge gourd can be eaten raw. However, the whole or partially peeled Ridge gourd should always be cooked as it has unpleasant smelly compounds in its skin that make it raw-inedible food.
5) In which places of India Ridge gourds are produced?
A. In Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Orissa, 35-40 farmers covering 80-90 acres of land are cultivated in high yielding ridge gourds. The type is well accepted for its high production potential and fruit quality.