5 Reasons To Add Ridge Gourd To Your Diet

Vegetables are an essential part of a balanced diet. They contribute to the smooth functioning of the body and improve overall health. However, most of us only focus on a few of them, like cabbage, cauliflower, brinjal, okra, and spinach, and the rest of them remain undercover. One such underrated vegetable is the ridge gourd. Also known as turai or jhinge, it is among the least favourite vegetables of many people. 

According to Netmeds, turai is rich in vital nutrients like dietary fibres, vitamin A, antioxidants, water content, vitamin C, iron, magnesium, and vitamin B6. They are also low in calorie content, unhealthy fats, and cholesterol. Ridge gourd is used to prepare a variety of dishes like pakoras, sambar, chutney, curry, and raita. 

Here are five benefits of adding ridge gourd to your diet:

Improves Digestion 

According to Netmeds, the high content of dietary fibre and water in this vegetable is beneficial for maintaining a healthy digestive system. The fibre promotes regular bowel movements and prevents constipation. So, add ridge gourd to your dishes and reduce the risk of constipation and other digestive problems.  

Manages Diabetes

If you are a diabetic patient, then ridge gourd is the perfect addition to your meals. According to HealthifyMe, the low glycemic index of this vegetable helps to regulate blood sugar levels, which has a positive impact on diabetes. The nutrients present in turai also boost metabolism and promote insulin function, which helps keep diabetes in check.

Protects Heart

Ridge gourd is good for managing cholesterol levels in the body, making it perfect to boost your heart health. According to Netmeds, this vegetable is also rich in potassium and magnesium, which play a crucial role in the smooth functioning of your cardiovascular system. They are high in antioxidants as well, which help fight against free radicals that damage body cells. 

Promotes Weight Loss 

As mentioned earlier, ridge gourd is low in calories and saturated fats, which can help in managing your weight. According to HealthifyMe, it is also high in dietary fibre, which promotes a feeling of fullness and reduces appetite. So, if you are planning to start your weight loss journey, then turai is a perfect addition to your fat-burning diet. 

Boosts Immunity

Boosting immunity is very important to stay away from chronic inflammation. According to Netmeds, the high content of vitamin C, iron, magnesium, and zinc in ridge gourd helps enhance your immunity and reduce the risk of infections in the eye, liver, stomach, and kidneys. So, include this vegetable in your diet and stay healthy.  

Here are four recipes you can prepare with ridge gourd:

Ridge Gourd Chutney

Also known as beerakaya pachadi in Andhra Pradesh, this yummy side dish has many variations. The spicy and hot flavours of turai chutney are perfect to amp up your boring meals. The main ingredients of this chutney are chopped ridge gourd, dried red chillies, tomatoes, chana dal, urad dal, tamarind paste, and spices like cumin seeds. 

Ridge Gourd Dal

If your kids don’t like this vegetable, then add ridge gourd while preparing dal. This dish is tasty, comforting, and easy to prepare. It is made with moong dal, tomatoes, chopped ridge gourd, fresh curry leaves, and spices like mustard seeds and asafoetida. This dal goes well with both rice and roti. 

Ridge Gourd Curry

It is a delicious and comforting dish that is very easy to prepare. Made with turai, moong dal, coconut, and a few basic spices like asafoetida and coriander powder, this vegan side dish is perfect for all three meals. Ridge gourd curry can be enjoyed with both rice and roti.  

Ridge Gourd Stir Fry

This dish is also known as peerkangai poriyal in Tamil Nadu. Made with onion, sambar powder, grated coconut, mustard seeds, dals (urad and chana), cumin seeds, curry leaves and asafoetida, it can be prepared within half an hour. You can enjoy turai stir-fry with rice as well roti for breakfast and lunch.