Nature has provided us with so many healthy options in the form of plants and herbs. Although the science has discovered so many new beneficial things, but many plants and animals still have hidden health benefits that are not discovered by the researchers.
With every rise of the Sun, there is a new discovery in science. The origin of most of the drugs is plants.
These drugs are used to treat diseases. Scientists make similar molecules to those drugs and discover new treatments of different diseases. One of those medically important plants is Vernonia amygdalina, commonly known as bitter leaf.
If you want to know the health benefits of this miraculous plant, you should spare sometime in reading this article.
Bitter leaf (Vernonia amygdalina) is a shrub or small tree that can reach 23 feet in height when fully grown. This plant is the member of the daisy family, that grows in tropical Africa. Its use is common since ancient times. And it has a lot of medicinal uses. According to researchers, bitter leaf has antifungal, antimalarial and anti bacterial properties. It has strong anti oxidant agents that are very good for health.
The leaves of the plant are so bitter that even touching them make your hands bitter. But the health benefits of this plant overcome its taste. In herbal medicine, the decoction of bitter leaf plant is used to treat different diseases. This plant has quinine that is the most effective drug for malaria.
Some of the major health benefits of bitter leaf are as below;
Relieves Stomach Ulcers:
Bitter leaf is famous for relieving stomach ulcers. It has strong anti oxidants that are good for protecting the walls of the stomach. That’s why bitter leaf can be used to treat stomach ulcers. According to research, the antioxidants in bitter leaf are responsible for these positive gastric effects.
Bitter leaf has abundant amount of quinine in it. That is a natural anti malarial drug. The use of bitter leaf for malaria is from centuries. The malaria patient can take the juice of bitter leaf three times a day to cure malarial fever.
Cures Fungal Infections:
Bitter leaf has strong anti fungal properties. You can apply its paste on the skin infections to treat your fungal infections.
Treats Skin Conditions:
Bitter leaf paste can treat your skin problems like eczema, psoriasis, ringworms etc. The plant has different antimicrobial effects that’s why helps in treating many skin conditions. If you have a sensitive skin type, consult with the best dermatologist in Lahore before applying any home remedy.
The ancient use of bitter leaf was to treat typhoid fever. The flavonoids present in bitter lead are strong antioxidants and are helpful in treating fever. That’s why bitter leaf can be used to treat malaria and typhoid fever.
Helps in Weight Loss:
Bitter leaf has some chemicals that help in burning the fat of body. The plant is helpful in removing bad cholesterol from your body and burns the extra calories. That’s why a glass of bitter leaf juice is good for your weight loss.
Controls Blood Sugar:
The bitter taste of bitter leaf depicts its role in controlling the blood sugar. According to different researches, the bitter leaf can help in treating diabetes. The phytochemicals, vitamins and other nutrients such as proteins, lipids, carbohydrates, ash and other chemicals in the bitter leaf are considered to aid lower blood sugar levels.
Bitter leaf is good for fertility of both men and women. The chemical compounds present in bitter leaf improves the sperm quality. And on the other hand, it has good effect on the fertility of females. As it helps in detoxification in the body, it helps in balancing the hormones of females. Compounds like edotides help in balancing the hormones and improving the immune system. That’s why use of bitter leaf can help you to get pregnant.
Bitter leaf has strong anti cancer properties. It can protest your body from different types of cancers. According to research, it is found to be effective in treating colon cancer, prostate cancer, and different gastro-intestinal cancers. Compounds like andrographolide are present in bitter leaf that helps in treating cancer. And bitter leaf has properties to inhibit the growth of tumors and prevent the cancer cell development.
Controls Blood Pressure:
Bitter leaf has some compounds that acts simultaneously to controls the blood pressure. The antioxidants properties are said to be responsible for this health benefit. Secondly as the bitter leaf helps in controlling bad cholesterol, in this way it helps in controlling the high blood pressure.
Healthy for Bones and Teeth:
Bitter leaf has Vitamin C as a strong anti oxidant. And we all know the health benefits of vitamin C with respect to teeth health. that’s why use of bitter lead can make your oral health better. Similarly, bitter leaf also has traces of vitamin K and many other minerals, that are good for your bones. The use of bitter leaf can prevent the weakening of bones tissues, also known as osteoporosis.
Our body needs different vitamins to perform metabolic functions. One of them is Vitamin B1, also known as Thiamine. Thiamine helps in metabolism of fats, glucose and protein in the human body. Bitter leaf is rich with thiamine and helps in improving the metabolism of fats, proteins and glucose, that are essential processes of the human body.
Drinking a glass of bitter leaf juice helps your body to perform its metabolic functions properly.
Fights With Free Radicals:
The bitter leaf has a lot of vitamins. And one of them is Vitamin E. Vitamins E helps in fighting with free radicals and protects your body from them.
Many people fight with insomnia. It is a condition in which you cant fall asleep easily. Bitter leaf has some properties that can relax your mind and help you to fall asleep. That’ why bitter has traditionally been used to treat insomnia.
Bitter leaf is famous for its detoxifying properties. Its juice can be used to detoxify your body. Toxins in your body can cause many health problems like infertility, metabolic disorders, and cancer etc. And it is important to detoxify your body from toxins. That’s why bitter leaf is very beneficial for your health as it helps in detoxification of your body.
Bitter has antibacterial properties. Its paste can be used to controls the external manifestation of STD by rubbing the paste on the genitals.
Treats Acne On Your Face:
Bitter leaf has a lot of vitamins and helps in removing toxins from your body. That’s why its use can help you to treat your acne on your face. You can drink bitter leaf juice for this purpose, or you can apply the paste of bitter lead on your face to see the results.
Bitter leaf has reported to relieve your tiredness. You can drink a glass of bitter leaf juice to gain your energy back.
Treats Abdominal Conditions:
Apart from stomach ulcers, bitter leaf can also treat medical conditions like, diarrhea, dysentery, stomach pain and many other stomach related problems. That’s why drinking the bitter leaf juice is good for your gastro-intestinal health.
Improves Milk Production:
Bitter leaf is also reported to have properties that improves the milk production in breast feeding mothers. That’s why its use can be beneficial for mothers who are trying to increase their milk supply.
Expels The Worms:
Bitter leaf also has anti-parasitic properties. Its use can kill or expels the worms from your digestive system. You can use bitter leaf if you are facing worm infestation in your system.
Healthy for Liver and Kidneys:
Bitter leaf has detoxifying properties, that’s why its use can be very beneficial for your liver and kidneys. These vital organs are the necessity of the normal functions of the human body. That’s why their health is very important for us. Using bitter leaf can help you to make your liver and kidneys healthy and active.
Apart from so many health benefits, you should also keep in mind, that excess of everything is bad for your health. So the important thing is to keep check on the dose of any remedy. Bitter leaf has many medicinal drugs in it. That’s why it also has side effects if taken in large amount.
Over consumption of bitter leaf can cause iron deficiency. And it is not advisable to take bitter leaf during pregnancy, as it may cause miscarriage. So, it is important to get advice by the health professional or herbalist before consuming this plant.
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