- What is Alma or Indian Gooseberry?
- 11 Amazing Benefits of Amla (Indian Gooseberry)
- Bottom Line
Amla or Indian Gooseberry benefits includes protecting the eyes against cataracts, keeping the body well hydrated, helping the body get rid of toxin, increasing appetite, slowing down body aging, preventing infection, managing digestion, keeping the heart healthy, reducing PMS symptoms, and managing diabetes. Other benefits includes improving the hair and aiding body metabolism.
What is Alma or Indian Gooseberry?
Amla or Indian gooseberry is often dubbed as the fruit of life. Native to the sub-tropical mountainous regions, this berry has been used for more than 5000 years. It was used in the Ayurvedic Medicine for its healing properties. The father of ancient Indian medicine wrote of the health and rejuvenating benefits of the Indian gooseberry.
This berry has a very nutritious composition, which contributes to its many health benefits. Its taste is rather harsh and not for everyone, but one can get used to it. The amla is ready is harvested in autumn and many Indians consider it a sacred tree. It has a high vitamin content and is packed full of other vitamins and minerals. The health benefits of this berry are due to its contents, it is a potent source of active antioxidants.
It contains vitamin A, folates, magnesium, potassium, calcium, pantothenic acid, vitamin B5, and phosphorus. There are many varieties of gooseberries; these bushes can survive in the drier areas for up to 20 years.
Fun fact: These berries are also called “Fay berries” as there is an ancient belief that fairies used the gooseberry bushes to hide from danger.
11 Amazing Benefits of Amla (Indian Gooseberry)
1. Great for The Eyes
The Indian gooseberry has a high amount of carotene, which has proved to be beneficial in protecting the eyes against cataracts, also helping to enhance your eyesight. There are also studies showing that the combination of vitamin A and carotene helps prevent macular degeneration. It also has been observed that people who regularly use the Indian gooseberry hardly have issues such as night blindness and near-sightedness.
Amla has a high water content that gives it its diuretic properties. These properties help flush out the toxins and other bacterium out of your system through urination. It helps remove toxins from the body and boosts your body’s ability to retain water – thus keeping you well-hydrated. There are many ways to eat this fruit and its juice will also help maintain the water levels in your body.
3. Healthy Appetite
Indians often eat gooseberry powder before a meal to increase their appetite. This is a tried and tested remedy for those who have little to no appetite. This may also be helpful for people who have eating disorders in which they do not feel like eating or are unable to finish a meal.
4. Slows Aging
Hyperlipidemia is often the reason for premature aging, which is where amla comes in. The Indian gooseberry has antioxidants that can help reduce the free radicals in the body. Aging cannot be stopped but there can be a significant reduction in its progression. Antioxidant-rich foods, especially the ones with high vitamin C content helps reduce the effects of free radicals. Free radicals cells cause different types of cancers. Plus, they also lead to the development of age spots and wrinkles. The oxidative damage can also be fatal as it is the cause of many types of cancers. Eating antioxidant-rich foods is the best way to prevent cancerous cells from growing.
5. Prevents Infection
Amla has astringent and antibacterial properties that help strengthen the gut bacteria. Antibacterial properties in amla help prevent viral infections from entering the body, causing any damage. It is good to eat amla when you come down with a flu or cold.
6. Manage Digestion
Fiber is a bulking agent and helps in the excretion of stool from the body. A healthy gut ensures a healthy mind and body. Constipation is one of most common problems of the digestive system. Eating amla also helps treat diarrhea because of all the fiber. Digestive problems occurring regularly may lead to the long-term problem and even cancer. It is better to eat foods that prevent these illnesses.
7. Healthy Heart
Atherosclerosis is one of the reasons for cardiovascular complications and failure. Amla strengthens the heart muscles and also is packed full of fiber, which is a bonus as fiber helps scrape all the LDL from your arteries and promotes adequate blood flow. Amla is also a good source of iron that helps the body generate new blood cells. The chromium present in Amla helps enhance the effect of beta blockers, which are viable for a healthy heart.
8. Reduces PMS Symptoms
Amla can be taken with honey during this cycle. The vitamin and minerals along with the iron content of the gooseberry eases cramps and menstrual pain. It helps regulate your blood flow and also maintains a healthy stomach. Symptoms of diarrhea are often observed in people during this time, it is recommended to add more fiber-rich foods in your diet.
9. Manage Diabetes
Diabetes is one of those diseases that affects many functions of the body. It can be the cause of high blood pressure and high levels of cholesterol. There is an element named chromium present in the Indian gooseberry that has medicinal properties, especially for the diabetic patients. It has been observed that eating gooseberry has stimulated the isolated group of insulin-secreting cells. Indian gooseberries are very effective in reducing sugar levels in the body. This also helps the body to gain energy for breaking down sugars, thus minimizing the risk of high insulin production.
10. Hair Improving Properties
There are so many varied recipes through which the benefits of Amla can be utilized for your hair. It is a staple in the hair care products found in India, Sri Lanka and other Asian countries. The benefits of applying Amla oil and Amla hair masks are many. It helps maintain color, strengthens roots and promotes hair growth. It is an effective remedy for hair loss and baldness.
Amla is full of antioxidants; carotene, and iron, which helps attack the hormones and free radicals responsible for bad hair conditions.
11. Aids metabolism
The body utilizes proteins from our diet to perform metabolic activities. Protein is essential to building tissues and for cell generation. It is also the main component for the growth of our hair and nails. The protein from Amla helps the body in building the cartilage, bones and blood cells.
Amla is a natural source of many minerals and vitamins. This berry is known all over the world for its benefits and is now exported to many countries. It is easily accessible in many grocery stores. There are multiple ways of adding it to your diet. If you are up for it then it can be eaten raw, or you can opt for its juice with honey.
There are also studies that show its role in aiding the absorption of calcium. This helps maintain bone strength and bone density.