My father is growing ampalaya vine. He usually gather the young shoots – only those that grow near the plant base. Young ampalaya leaves are popular as vegetable dish ingredients. It’s more than just leaves, anyone can get more benefits out of these bitter commodity.
If we dig dipper down to plant anatomy, all the growing shoots before reaching the trellis (balag) are not necessary for good ampalaya fruit production. They are not getting enough sunlight and depends on other leaves that have more than enough. Those can be freely removed and should be…
1) The decoction of the leaves is used as a stomachic – relating to stomach problems e.g.diarrhea. The recommended intake is one teaspoon of ground ampalaya leaves three times a day.
2) The leaves is used as antipyretic – medicine that lowers body temperature to prevent or alleviate fever
3) The whole plant, pulverized, is a good when externally applied in leprosy and malignant ulcers. Malignant – dangerous to health; characterized by progressive and uncontrolled growth.
4) The leaves are pound and apply to certain skin diseases. Can also be applied to burns and scalds.
5) Applied as a poultice for headaches. Poultice – a medical dressing consisting of a soft heated mass of meal or clay that is spread on a cloth and applied to the skin to treat inflamed areas or improve circulation. Pantapal from albularyo vocabulary.
6) Watt says that an infusion of the leaves acts as a febrifuge – lowers body temperature to prevent or alleviate fever.
7) The leaves are administered as an anthelmintic – capable of expelling or destroying parasitic worms.
8) The juice of the fresh leaves acts as a mild purgative – stimulates evacuation of the bowels – for children.
10) Aids in treatment of diabetes. As researched and published by Dr. William Torres, amplaya contains polypeptide-P, an insulin like substance present only in this bitter plant.
11) Boiled leaves and a decoction of the plant itself is recommended to promote lochiae. Lochiae (lochia) substance discharged from the vagina (cellular debris and mucus and blood) that gradually decreases in amount during the weeks following childbirth.
12) The sweetened decoction of the leaves is considered a powerful emmenagogue (promotes menstrual discharge), and an effective vermifuge (causing the evacuation of parasitic intestinal worms).
source:bpi.gov.ph : Edited as of December 4, 2014. Please let me know if you have found other useful information to add… Thanks!