Explainer: Bottle gourd poisoning is a fact; know how this humble vegetable can turn fatal for you

However, there are certain toxins in the bottle gourd, which one should be careful about. It contains toxic tetracyclic triterpenoid compounds called cucurbitacins which are responsible for the bitter taste and toxicity. The plant produces this toxin as a defence mechanism against herbivore animals.

So far, there are no antidotes for this toxicity.

Bottle gourd juice with bitter taste can cause toxic reactions in the body and lead to abdominal pain, vomiting, diarrhea, hematemesis, hematochezia, shock and even death.

It is therefore advisable to not consume the drink if it tastes bitter.

As per a research study, the symptoms of toxicity due to bottle gourd appears within an hour of consumption. The initial symptoms of the poisoning are vomiting, diarrhea, upper gastrointestinal bleeding and hypotension.

Studies say consuming 50-300 ml of cucurbitacin can generate symptoms like gastrointestinal bleeding and diarrhea and the symptoms can get severe if one consumes the juice more than this limit.

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