You have heard about bitter melon, an amazing fruit that grows in Asia, Africa and the Caribbean. It is often used to treat diabetes and other more mild diseases or illnesses.

Also, bitter melon juice was shown to kill pancreatic cancer cells in vitro and in mice in a study done by the University of Colorado. Considering the results were seen in both in vitro and in vivo tests, the effectiveness of bitter melon juice in treating pancreatic cancer, and potentially other cancers, at a clinical level are promising.

IHC analyses showed that juice from bitter melon inhibits proliferation, induces apoptosis and activates AMPK (adenosine monophosphate-activated protein kinase) in vivo. Overall, bitter melon juice exerts strong anticancer efficacy against human pancreatic carcinoma cells, both in vitro and in vivo, suggesting its clinical usefulness.

Bitter melon juice was used to treat pancreatic cancer, which is considered to be one of the most difficult types of cancer to treat because is often discovered late.

Interestingly, cannabinoids have been shown to induce apoptic (programmed) death of human pancreatic cancer cells in vitro and stop pancreatic tumor growth in vivo.

Scientific evidence

Pancreatic Cancer

In is known that Pancreas cancer is the hardest tumor to teat. Studies have shown that insulin encourages pancreatic cancer cells to grow in a dose dependent manner, since bitter melon has been shown to help regulate insulin levels, this could help prevent pancreatic cancer over the long-term.

University of Colorado made a study led by Dr. Rajesh Agarwal, in which the effects of bitter melon were examined on 4 different lines of pancreatic cancer cells. The research was made on mice. Mice were injected with pancreatic tumor cells and were randomly divided into one of two groups. One group of mice received water, which was the control group, and the other group was given bitter melon juice for six weeks.

At the end of the study the results showed that bitter melon juice inhibited cancer cell proliferation and induced apoptosis (programmed cell death). Tumor growth was inhibited by 60% in the treatment group and there were no signs of toxicity or negative effects on the body. This study encouraged the doctors to start using bitter melon juice in the cancer treatments.


It is scientifically proved that diabetes is a precursor for pancreatic cancer and after the result of the research with bitter melon treatment of cancer; researchers gave a chance to treat diabetes with bitter melon juice.

A four week research was made in 2011 showed hypoglycemic effects and significant fructosamine management for those taking 2000mg/day of bitter melon. The results of this research were published in the Journal of Ethno pharmacology.

According to another study published in 2008 in the international journal Chemistry and Biology indicated that compounds in bitter melon improved glycemic control, helped cells uptake glucose and improved overall glucose tolerance. This study was also done on mice and led to promising advancements in treating diabetes and obesity with bitter melon.

A lot of studies showed that bitter melon juice has beneficial effects on treating diabetes and pancreatic cancer.

To conclude

Using bitter melon juice will help in treatment of specific types of cancer, diabetes and potential prevention of pancreatic cancer. The benefits of this amazing plant are yet to be fully discovered.

In traditional medicine, bitter melon is used to treat colic, fever, burns, chronic cough, painful menstruation and skin conditions.