Calabacita, Calabaza Hiedra, Coccinia cordifolia, Coccinia grandis, Coccinia indica, Coccinia Índica, Courge Écarlate, Kovai, Little Gourd, Tela Kucha, Tindola.


Overview Information

Ivy gourd is a plant. The leaves, root, and fruit are used to make medicine.

Ivy gourd is most often used for diabetes. People also use ivy gourd for gonorrhea, constipation, wounds, and other conditions, but there is no good scientific evidence to support these uses. Ivy gourd fruit and leaves are also used as a vegetable in India and other Asian countries.

How does it work?

Ivy gourd contains chemicals that may reduce blood sugar levels. Chemicals in ivy gourd might also help heal skin wounds by killing bacteria, reducing swelling (inflammation), and rebuilding skin tissue.


Uses & Effectiveness?

Possibly Effective for

  • Diabetes. Taking ivy gourd leaf by mouth seems to improve blood sugar control in people with diabetes.

Insufficient Evidence for

  • Constipation.
  • Gonorrhea.
  • Eczema (atopic dermatisis).
  • Scaly, itchy skin (psoriasis).
  • Wound healing.
  • Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of ivy gourd for these uses.

Side Effects

Side Effects & Safety

When taken by mouth: Ivy gourd leaf is POSSIBLY SAFE for most people when taken by mouth for up to 6 weeks. Side effects are mild and may include headache, nausea, or dizziness. There isn't enough information to know if ivy gourd is safe when used long-term.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: There isn't enough reliable information to know if ivy gourd is safe to use when pregnant or breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.

Diabetes: Ivy gourd might lower blood sugar. If you have diabetes and use ivy gourd, check your blood sugar carefully.

Surgery: Ivy gourd might lower blood sugar. There is some concern it might interfere with blood sugar control during and after surgery. Stop using ivy gourd at least 2 weeks before a scheduled surgery.



Moderate Interaction

Be cautious with this combination

  • Medications for diabetes (Antidiabetes drugs) interacts with IVY GOURD

    Ivy gourd can decrease blood sugar levels. Diabetes medications are also used to lower blood sugar. Taking ivy gourd along with diabetes medications might cause your blood sugar to be too low. Monitor your blood sugar closely. The dose of your diabetes medication might need to be changed.
    Some medications used for diabetes include glimepiride (Amaryl), glyburide (DiaBeta, Glynase PresTab, Micronase), insulin, pioglitazone (Actos), rosiglitazone (Avandia), chlorpropamide (Diabinese), glipizide (Glucotrol), tolbutamide (Orinase), and others.



The appropriate dose of ivy gourd depends on several factors such as the user's age, health, and several other conditions. At this time there is not enough scientific information to determine an appropriate range of doses for ivy gourd. Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult your pharmacist or physician or other healthcare professional before using.

View References


  • Azad Khan, A. K., AKhtar, S., and Mahtab, H. Coccinia indica in the treatment of patients with diabetes mellitus. Bangladesh Med Res Counc Bull 1979;5(2):60-66. View abstract.
  • Cefalu, W. T., Ye, J., and Wang, Z. Q. Efficacy of dietary supplementation with botanicals on carbohydrate metabolism in humans. Endocr.Metab Immune.Disord Drug Targets. 2008;8(2):78-81. View abstract.
  • Hardy, M, Coulter, I, Venturupalli, S, Roth, EA, Favreau, J, Morton, SC, and Shekelle, P. Ayurvedic interventions for diabetes mellitus: a systematic review. In: The Cochrane Library 2007;(4)
  • Kamble, S. M., Kamlakar, P. L., Vaidya, S., and Bambole, V. D. Influence of Coccinia indica on certain enzymes in glycolytic and lipolytic pathway in human diabetes. Indian J Med Sci 1998;52(4):143-146. View abstract.
  • Khan, A. K., AKhtar, S., and Mahtab, H. Treatment of diabetes mellitus with Coccinia indica. Br Med J 4-12-1980;280(6220):1044. View abstract.
  • Kuriyan, R., Rajendran, R., Bantwal, G., and Kurpad, A. V. Effect of supplementation of Coccinia cordifolia extract on newly detected diabetic patients. Diabetes Care 2008;31(2):216-220. View abstract.
  • Venkateswaran, S. and Pari, L. Effect of Coccinia indica leaf extract on plasma antioxidants in streptozotocin- induced experimental diabetes in rats. Phytother.Res 2003;17(6):605-608. View abstract.
  • Wasantwisut, E. and Viriyapanich, T. Ivy gourd (Coccinia grandis Voigt, Coccinia cordifolia, Coccinia indica) in human nutrition and traditional applications. World Rev Nutr Diet 2003;91:60-66. View abstract.
  • Al-Madhagy SA, Mostafa NM, Youssef FS, Awad GEA, Eldahshan OA, Singab ANB. Metabolic profiling of a polyphenolic-rich fraction of Coccinia grandis leaves using LC-ESI-MS/MS and in vivo validation of its antimicrobial and wound healing activities. Food Funct 2019;10(10):6267-75. View abstract.
  • Dhanabal SP, Koate CK, Ramanathan M, et al. The hypoglycemic activity of Coccinia indica Wight & Arn. and its influence on certain biochemical parameters. Indian J Pharmacol 2004;36:249-250.
  • Eshrat MH. Effect of Coccinia indica (L.) and Abroma augsta (L.) on glycemia, lipid profile and on indicators of end-organ damage in streptozotocin induced diabetic rats. Indian J Clin Biochem 2003;18:54-63.
  • Kar A, Choudhary BK, Bandyopadhyay NG. Comparative evaluation of hypoglycaemic activity of some Indian medicinal plants in alloxan diabetic rats. J Ethnopharmacol 2003;84:105-8. View abstract.
  • Khan AK, AKhtar S, Mahtab H. Treatment of diabetes mellitus with Coccinia indica. Br Med J 1980;280:1044.
  • Kumar GP, Sudheesh S, Vijayalakshmi NR. Hypoglycaemic effect of Coccinia indica: mechanism of action. Planta Med 1993;59:330-2. View abstract.
  • Munasinghe MAAK, Abeysena C, Yaddehige IS, et al. Blood sugar lowering effect of Coccinia grandis (L.) J. Voight: path for a new drug for diabetes mellitus. Exp Diabetes Res 2011; doi: 10.1155/2011/978762. View abstract.
  • Shibib BA, Khan LA, Rahman R. Hypoglycaemic activity of Coccinia indica and Momordica charantia in diabetic rats: depression of the hepatic gluconeogenic enzymes glucose-6-phosphatase and fructose-1,6-bisphosphatase and elevation of both liver and red-cell shunt enzyme glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase. Biochem J 1993;292:267-70. View abstract.
  • Venkateswaran S, Pari L. Effect of Coccinia indica leaves on antioxidant status in streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats. J Ethnopharmacol 2003;84:163-8. View abstract.
  • Yeh GY, Eisenberg DM, Kaptchuk TJ, Phillips RS. Systematic review of herbs and dietary supplements for glycemic control in diabetes. Diabetes Care 2003;26:1277-94. View abstract.

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CONDITIONS OF USE AND IMPORTANT INFORMATION: This information is meant to supplement, not replace advice from your doctor or healthcare provider and is not meant to cover all possible uses, precautions, interactions or adverse effects. This information may not fit your specific health circumstances. Never delay or disregard seeking professional medical advice from your doctor or other qualified health care provider because of something you have read on WebMD. You should always speak with your doctor or health care professional before you start, stop, or change any prescribed part of your health care plan or treatment and to determine what course of therapy is right for you.

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