Suffering from indigestion after eating spicy food? Chew a piece of amla.
Is your kid always suffering from infections due to low immunity? Give a glass of freshly prepared amla juice.
Troubled with dandruff and severe hair fall? Apply amla hair pack.
So on and so forth…
Amla, known as Indian gooseberry, is a go-to remedy for most of the common problems that we encounter on a day to day basis. Be it dealing with gas trouble or fighting cough and cold, it is a wonder fruit packed with numerous benefits. Used as a medicinal fruit in Ayurveda, Amla is packed with vitamins such as Vitamin C and Vitamin B complex. Moreover, it also contains minerals such as calcium, iron, chromium, and phosphorus, which play a key role in maintaining overall health. The high fiber content in amla makes it a healthy option for people planning to lose weight.
Health Benefits of Amla (Indian Gooseberry)
From centuries, Amla is used as an active ingredient in many herbal medicines. Moreover, amla is also widely used in foods as it imparts a unique taste and flavour to it. Not just this, here are more reasons why you need to include amla in your diet without fail.
1. Delays Ageing
Amla is rich in Vitamin C, which acts as a potent antioxidant. As the dead cells get accumulated in the body, it leads to premature ageing. But antioxidants are the compounds that fight free radicals and flush toxins from the body, which lead to cell damage and thus, ageing. Hence, eating foods that are rich in antioxidants like amla can not only delay ageing but also keep you healthy.
Did you know that eating raw gooseberry a day can keep wrinkles away? To reap the anti-aging benefits it is best to have it with pepper and salt on an empty stomach in the morning.
2. Helps In Weight Loss
Amla can fight obesity and help you to lose weight. It burns cholesterol and enhances the retention of protein and nitrogen in the body thereby helping us build muscle and reduce flab. Also, the presence of fibre helps in flushing waste from the body and help control cravings. This not only fills you up but also prevents you from binging and thus, aiding in weight loss.
You can either have one whole amla in the morning to kickstart your day or drink a glass of freshly prepared amla juice mid-morning to lose weight.
3. Reduces Cholesterol
Amla prevents the accumulation of bad cholesterol in the arteries and promotes heart health. It contains the compounds which interfere with the absorption of cholesterol from foods, thus reducing the level of cholesterol in the body. It also blocks the action of the enzyme which plays a key role in the production of cholesterol. Hence, make sure you include amla in your diet to control cholesterol levels and keep your heart healthy. For this, drink half a glass of amla juice mixed with a tablespoon full of honey on an empty stomach in the morning.
4. Fights Cold And Cough
Are you suffering from cough and cold? Instead of popping pills, try amla this time! It is an excellent source of vitamin C, which makes it a great natural remedy to fight cough and cold. The anti-inflammatory properties of amla not only reduce inflammation in the body but also boost immunity, improving the condition. Moreover, the presence of antioxidants help remove toxins from the body.
To reap the benefits of gooseberry, take two medium-sized fruits, cut into pieces and grind in a mixer by adding little water. Pass it through a strainer to extract the juice. Now mix it with two tablespoons of honey and a pinch of dried ginger powder (soonth). Have this mixture four times a day to get rid of cough and cold naturally at home.
5. Prevents Constipation
Amla is a rich source of fibre which facilitates the bowel movement. It acts as a great laxative thereby helping people with constipation to get rid of it. Moreover, it also stimulates the secretion of the gastric juices and thus, improves digestion. The presence of a wide range of nutrients in amla makes it a great natural remedy for constipation.
To reap its benefits, all you have to do is to eat one small-sized fruit or drink a small glass of freshly prepared amla juice early in the morning for smooth digestion. For people struggling with constipation, add half to one teaspoon of amla powder in a glass of lukewarm water and drink it at night for effective results.
6. Regulates Blood Sugar
Did you know that amla is good for diabetics? Yes! This fruit is packed with nutrients and is low in the glycemic index, which makes it a healthy fruit for people with diabetes. Most people think of amla juice as nothing short of an elixir for life for patients with diabetes. It not only fights free radicals in blood but also facilitates insulin absorption resulting in a reduced blood sugar level.
When taken regularly, it helps to maintain the blood glucose level, acting as a simple but effective home remedy for diabetics. Hence, it is advised that diabetics should include this seasonal fruit in the diet for a healthy life.
7. Boosts Immunity
The fruit is a rich source of Vitamin C, Vitamin B Complex and antioxidants. These nutrients not only flush harmful toxins from the body but also help in fighting the harmful free radicals. The presence of anti-inflammatory compounds in amla help in lowering the levels of inflammation in the body and thus, preventing infections. It also contains immune-boosting properties, which make it a must-to-have winter fruit to deal with seasonal infections.
So making a habit of having an amla in the morning, either in the raw or as a juice can make you less vulnerable to diseases and keep you healthy. For kids, amla in the form of murabba (amla boiled with jaggery or chywanprash) can be used as a spread over rotis or bread, might help them reap the immune-boosting properties.
8. Strengthens Bones
Want strong bones? Include amla in your diet along with other calcium-rich foods. Not only is amla rich in calcium but it also helps in the absorption of calcium and thus, strengthen bones. It is also reported that this fruit can hinder the break down of osteoclasts, the cells of the bone. Moreover, the anti-inflammatory properties of amla play a key role in reducing inflammation and thus, relieve pain and swelling in the joints and bones in people with arthritis.
To make your bones strong and healthy, snack on a handful of amla candy or raw amla cubes sprinkled with salt and pepper.
9. Cools The Body
According to Ayurveda, amla has a cooling (shita virya) effect on our body which helps in regulating the body temperature. It also acts as an effective remedy for fever as it helps boost immunity. Moreover, the cooling properties of amla also help balance pitta in the body by neutralising the stomach acids and reducing inflammation in the body. This is the reason, amla, which is a seasonal fruit, is widely used in Indian cuisine during summers and winters.
Eat it raw or drink the juice of gooseberries daily to keep you at ease during the summers and also to prevent stomach ailments.
10. Nourishes the Hair
Amla also acts as a wonderful home remedy for dandruff, hair fall and grey hair. Amla is well-known as a natural hair conditioner and its antimicrobial properties prevent and cure an infection of the scalp, thus helping you to get rid of dandruff. It can also prevent greying of hair.
To use amla for your hair, soak a couple of mashed gooseberries in a litre of water overnight. Make a fine paste in a grinder and apply it on the hair and scalp. Use the amla-soaked water to wash the hair after shampooing for instant results.
Amla is a real homegrown super-food that is packed with nutrients and has virtually no side-effects. Its low price is also an incentive for all to include this humble fruit in our diets. So, go ahead and give this healthy fruit a try to reap its health benefits. Stay healthy, Stay Happy!
The content is reviewed by Dr. Lalit Kanodia, General Physician and Dr. Deepak Soni, Ayurvedacharya)
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