The bottle gourd (lauki or calabash) is a very common vegetable grown mostly in the humid weather of tropical regions of South East Asia and South America. Historically, in addition to eating, it was also dried and used as a hanging bottle jug for keeping some items in the villages. It was known by our ancestors that bottle guard was a soothing food for the stomach and hence was consumed in many stomach ailments. Due to a large amount (about 90-95%) of water in it, the calorie value is too less and is hardly 150 calorie for 1 Kg of it. Further, in the same weight the fat content is very low and to the tune of 10 grams only. At the same time it has good amount of fibre and many minerals and vitamins like Vitamin C, riboflavin, zinc, thiamine, iron, magnesium and manganese. Some benefits of the bottle guard are as follows -
1. Due to its rich dietary fibre, it is good in the constipation condition.
2. Having so low a calorie, it is ideal for weight loss programme.
3. The minerals, antioxidants, and vitamins keep the body immune system intact if we take it regularly in our diet.
4. People having diabetic conditions or fat and cholesterol problems can have it without any worry.
5. Its high water content helps in keeping the body hydrated.
6. Due to presence of essential minerals as well as the trace elements it is good for the people having hypertension.
7. It is good for all the people but is especially recommended for the children and elders.
8. In Ayurveda, the bottle gourd juice is recommended for a better health. It is claimed to be useful in the conditions like stomach acidity, indigestion, ulcers, nervous diseases, insomnia, insanity, bronchitis, cough, asthma etc.
Knowledge is power.