Amla also known as Indian gooseberry is a type of citrus fruit that grows on a flowering tree of the same name. They are sour in taste and their color varies from green to yellowish green. Amla is generally consumed widely in India in the form of Amla juice, pickles and chutneys. We have all heard about Amla and its various uses in the skincare, haircare and medicine industries, but we are unaware of the actual health benefits of amla.
So, today in this article, we will be looking at how nutritive amla is and will be knowing all of its hidden health and medicinal benefits. Let’s begin.
Nutritional Information of Amla
Amla is not only considered great for your skin and hair but also has several health benefits to offer when eaten raw or in dried forms. It is highly rich in antioxidants, amino acids, vitamins, minerals, dietary fiber and polyphenols. The approximate nutritional information of 100g amla is as follows.
10 Health Benefits of Amla
Amla is extensively rich in Vitamin C. 100g of raw amla contains approximately 28mg of Vitamin C. Vitamin C acts as an antioxidant in our body which protects the cell from oxidative stress and improves immune cell functions. It also plays a major role in reducing inflammation caused by free radicals in our body. In fact, Amla is regarded as one of the best natural sources of Vitamin C. Moreover, Amla is also associated with increasing the WBC count in our body, which further improves your body’s defensive mechanism against bacteria, allergies and harmful pathogens. So consuming at least one amla a day is very important if your immunity power is low.
Great for your liver
Amla being rich in antioxidants maintains the oxidative/antioxidative balance in the liver and also is related to the removal of free radicals. As a result, it is considered great for your liver. Moreover, Amla also helps in the detoxification of the liver as it is rich in phytochemicals like gallic acid, quercetin and ellagic acid. So drinking amla juice or consuming at least two amlas a day will help you maintain a good liver system.
Considered great for improving your digestive system
Not only the liver but consuming Amla can help boost your overall digestive system. Moreover, Amla is considered great in the prevention and treatment of GERD (Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease), stomach ulcers and stomach cramps. Amla is also rich in dietary fiber, which further helps in the prevention of constipation by allowing easy bowel movements in the form of stool and improving your overall gut health as well. Some studies also prove that Amla helps in the production of gastric juices which prevents frequent acidity and bloating.
Improves heart health
Amla is known to improve heart health and provides protection against heart-related medical conditions such as stroke, high cholesterol levels and inflammation. Certain studies also indicate that Amla helps in reducing high blood pressure levels. Amla being rich in Vitamin C improves nitric oxide production in the endothelium and reduces blood pressure. This helps in preventing medical conditions like hypertension. Indirectly, Amla also reduces oxidative stress, and high levels of triglycerides and ultimately prevents clots and strokes.
Beneficial for your kidneys
Amla is considered great for your kidneys as well. The antioxidants present in Amla prevent kidney damage, kidney dysfunction and kidney toxicity. Consuming Amla juice or at least two amlas a day will boost your overall kidney health. Moreover, Amla is also rich in polyphenols which protect your body from developing renal diseases. As a result, doctors generally suggest Amla to older people who have kidney-related issues.
Extremely beneficial for your hair
Amla in the form of juice is preferred more in India. It is extensively considered great for our hair health. It is a natural medicine that promotes hair health and prevents hair loss. The perfect combination of antioxidants, amino acids, tannins and Vitamin C present in Amla serves this cause. It is also regarded as a great anti-dandruff therapy as it works efficiently in removing dandruff from your hair. From stopping hair fall to preventing grey hair, Amla can nourish your hair and take care of it efficiently. Drinking Amla juice every day in the morning will definitely boost your hair growth. There are so many packed amla juices available in the Indian markets but the best one is that which you make at home. Nowadays Amla oil is also available in the Indian markets which can be directly applied to your hair to boost your hair quality.
Considered great for your skin as well
Not only does Amla takes care of your hair but also boosts your overall skin health. In fact, Amla is one of the best fruits that serves as an anti-aging therapy. Amla is rich in collagen protein as well as antioxidants that prevent premature wrinkles, ultimately making your skin seem fresh and younger. In Ayurveda, Amla juice is regarded as one of the best drinks to boost your overall skin quality as it is a natural blood purifier and makes your skin look hydrated and bright.
Strengthens bones and teeth
Amla is rich in Calcium and Iron which are directly related to strengthening your bones and teeth. It also has anti-inflammatory properties that provide temporary relief against joint pain, swelling, arthritis and osteoporosis. Teeth problems like tooth decay and brittle teeth can be prevented if you are consuming Amla on a regular basis.
May prevent diabetes
Amla is related to the prevention of type 2 diabetes. Although it is not confirmed but certain studies show that chromium present in Amla helps in reducing blood sugar levels which helps in preventing type 2 diabetes. Moreover, the presence of Vitamin C in Amla makes it act like a ROS scavenger helping in fighting oxidative damage and thus helping in preventing type 2 diabetes and pancreatitis.
Good for your eyes
In Ayurveda, Amla is considered as a great medicine to prevent diseases such as glaucoma, refractive errors, cataract and macular degeneration. This is because Amla is rich in Vitamin C which prevents such problems. Moreover, Vitamin C also boosts collagen formation which provides the structure for your cornea. Also, the presence of Vitamin A in Amla helps in maintaining a clear cornea and prevents night blindness.
How to consume Amla?
Amla can be eaten raw, as pickles or in the form of juice. In India, it is generally consumed in the form of juice or as pickles. Packaged readymade amla juices are widely available in the Indian markets but the best way to consume Amla is by making Amla juice at home.
How to make Amla juice at home?
It is very easy to make Amla juice at home. You just need 3-4 amla fruits along with water, ginger, honey, water and black pepper.
Chop Amla fruit into small pieces and discard the seeds. Next, mix all the ingredients along with the chopped amla pieces and blend them thoroughly in a mixer grinder. Use a strainer to filter out the pulp and other remainings. Your Amla juice is ready for you to drink.
How not to consume Amla?
Although eating raw amla or in the form of juice is the best way to consume Amla to get all its nutritive benefits, there are certain ways we consume Amla in India where the actual nutritive value of Amla is lost.
In order to make Amla tasty, we generally tend to prepare a recipe called Amla murabba, which is actually tasty. But unfortunately while preparing this dish the Vitamin C content of the Amla gets removed as Vitamin C is extremely sensitive to air. So if you are eating Amla for its high Vitamin C content make sure to eat it raw or consume it in the form of juice.
The same is the case with the Amla chatni recipe. Most of the Vitamin C content of the Amla is lost during its preparation. Cooking Amla hampers all its nutritional qualities.
The ideal way to consume Amla is to cut and eat it immediately. If you are preparing the amla drink, make sure to make it fresh and drink it as leaving the juice for a long time after cutting the amla makes it get oxidized and lose all its nutritive qualities.
So overall, as we can see Amla has several health benefits if consumed in the right away. Yes, the taste may seem a little sour but it is with its nutritive values. Moreover, sour fruits are loved by many in India. If you do not like the citrus taste, you can definitely make the Amla juice and add a little bit of ginger and honey to make it tasty as mentioned previously. In this way, the Amla drink becomes tastier and at the same time does not lose its nutritive value.