Amla, the Indian Gooseberry: What Do We Know?
Amla, also known as Indian Gooseberry, is a wonder fruit. The whole plant — fruit, leaves, and seeds — is used for medicinal purposes since ancient times in India.
Celebrities like Kim Kardashian West, Britney Spears, and Sofia Vergara have even endorsed this antioxidant-rich fruit.
What is Amla?
Amla comes from a flowering tree with the same name in the Indian subcontinent. Bright yellow-green in color, this berry is known for the instant tanginess that arises in your mouth the moment you take a tiny bit of it.
History reveals that this berry has been used for more than 1000 years. However, the exact period of introduction of this berry in diets is unknown.
Amla is not limited to medicinal use; this edible fruit also holds a unique position in Indian cuisine.
What are the potential benefits?
The high presence of Vitamin C makes it an excellent agent for anti-aging. Traditionally amla has been embraced by generations of Indians for beautiful hair, skin, and vision. It is also commonly used in Thailand for haircare.
Amla is usually a beauty secret passed on from generations — from grandmothers to grandkids.
· Diabetes control
Studies suggest that these berries can lower blood sugar levels and treat type 2 diabetes due to the high content of Vitamin C. More data is required for confirmation.
· Heart health
The antioxidants and anti-inflammatory components in this berry may also boost your heart health and prevent oxidative damages.
Studies on small samples show berries are beneficial in maintaining healthy triglycerides, LDL (bad) cholesterol, and HDL (good) cholesterol levels, thus improving heart health.
Rich in fiber, amla helps in bowel movement, supporting the effective functioning of the digestive system. Plus, a high level of Vitamin C also leads to more excellent absorption of food nutrients.
The antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties with a notable presence of polyphenols, alkaloids, and flavonoids power the immunity system.
· Common cold
Vitamin C helps in fighting the common cold. Thus, Indians have long used amla for instant relief from cold.
The ever-growing list of superfoods can be daunting. Take it slow and give organic amla powder (if fresh ones are unavailable) a try when you have done your research.
If you are on blood thinners or have a bleeding disorder, you should talk to your healthcare provider before consuming amla.
Author: Somrita Ganchoudhuri
Image source: indianexpress.com