Bottle gourd, (Lagenaria vulgaris), is one of the varieties of calabash, a long and slim type as compared to most calabash gourds where it is much rounder. Its color is yellow green with white pulps, white seeds are seen on the inside portion of the vegetable.
Other famous names bottle gourd is known for according to different cultures are white gourd and bottle squash for the US, doodhi for China, Lauki and ghia for India, Labu for Indonesia, Hyotan and yugao for Japan, Upo for Philippines, Bau for Vietnam, Buap Khaus and nam tao for Thailand
Bottle gourd is a vine and the fruit grows off from it. Harvesting the fruit can be done either when it is still young (for vegetable use) or when it has matured and dried (used as a pipe, utensil and a bottle).
The vegetable originated in Africa and it is believed to be one of the earliest types of vegetable nurtured by human beings.
Image : Picture of Bottle gourd
Bottle gourd Recipes
Different culture uses different cuisine for their dish but the most common dish that is widely used by most culture is the use of Bottle gourd vegetable specifically in India.
Some want their bottle gourd to be toasted and mixed with other ingredients such as cinnamon to make a drink. Others also boil and eat together with a spicy fish sauce. For some, it is cooked to make a summer squash.
Bottle gourd is used for a variety of dishes and that can be boiled, makes into a soup, fried or even used as a form of medicine.
Whatever the preparation for the bottle gourd recipe is, the most important consideration that we have to remember is that it still gives our human body the same health benefits we can get from it.
Bottle gourd Nutrition
As with all other vegetables, we too can get vitamins and mineral from eating bottle gourd. It is comprised mostly of water at about 95%.
In terms of the Food Value are as follows:
- Protein 0.2%
- Fat 0.1%
- Fibre 0.6%
- Carbohydrates 2.5%
- Mineral 0.5%
In the case of Vitamins and Minerals, here are the lists of nutrition we can get:
- Vitamin B complex
- Iron 0.7%
- Phosphorus 10mg
- Calcium 20mg
Bottle gourd Seeds
When you cut the vegetable into half, you will see that embedded in it are its seeds. These seeds should be removed and not be eaten.
Bottle gourd seeds can be used to plant a new set of vegetables and it is easy to raise one.
Bottle gourd Health Benefits
Bottle gourd vegetable has a lot of properties that are beneficial for our human body that helps us to have a good health.
When bottle gourd is cooked, it gives the body a sedative, cooling and calming effect. It can make a person feel relax after eating.
Moreover, the vegetable has an important role in helping treat urinary disorder s. In the case of acidic urine wherein burning sensation upon urination is experienced, bottle gourd helps alkalinize the pH of the urine by taking a glassful of the grated vegetable mixed with lime juice (a teaspoonful of it).
As mentioned above, it is composed of 95% water thus it can help in the cooling effect of the body. It should be taken preferably in the morning to help us in preventing heat stroke especially during summer days. Aside from its cooling effect, its water composition also helps relieve excessive thirst and other conditions that can cause dehydration such as diarrhea, excessive heat, diabetes. Also, it helps prevents loss of sodium and prevents fatigue.