Ever wondered if there is an inexpensive and all-in-one food that could help you stay healthy? While most fruits and vegetables are known to help build your immune system, there is none like the Indian gooseberry, popularly known as amla, that treats and prevents a host of health issues. From curing sore throat to treating anaemia, amla is considered to be a wonder berry in Ayurveda. Its regular consumption in various forms is recommended.
Here are some of the benefits of amla:
1. Helps build immunity
It is a rich source of dietary fibre and carbohydrates with just 60 calories per 100 grams. It has nutrients like vitamin A, pyridoxine, riboflavin and minerals like sodium, potassium, carotene, calcium, copper, zinc, phosphorus, manganese, magnesium, and iron. The antioxidants and Vitamin C in amla also help boost immunity along with boosting metabolism and preventing viral and bacterial ailments, including cold and cough. While amla juice can be a tad unpalatable but is highly beneficial. It can also be consumed as a candy which is prepared with a mixture of amla, jaggery and rock salt. Two-three candies can be consumed right after meals.
2. Aids digestion
As a fibre-dense fruit, amla aids healthy bowel movement by keeping the gastrointestinal tract clean. This prevents common digestive issues including constipation. Acidity and indigestion can also be controlled with amla. A half teaspoon of amla powder with a glass of warm water can give some relief.
As a rich source of chromium, amla helps the body to respond to insulin which helps manage the insulin sensitivity. It helps control blood sugar levels and can be consumed as part of one’s diet. However, it is no substitute for regular diabetes medication.
4. Prevents Anaemia
Amla is known to increase the production of red blood cells in the body which help purify the blood. Since amla is rich in antioxidants, it helps fight free radicals that are responsible for early ageing. It is also said that amla combined with jaggery is a great booster for haemoglobin.
5. Hair and skin
The easiest way to get rid of dandruff and have smooth hair is amla. While regular consumption can help with overall hair health, applying a mixture of amla powder and yogurt can help clean the scalp and get rid off dandruff.
Amla can be consumed in raw form or in the form of a juice. Dried powder of amla is also an effective method. Used in chutneys, pickles and other foods, amla is a must-have winter fruit. You can change the entire nutritional value of the food consumed with this one ingredient. It is also rich in calcium and antioxidants.
If you’re looking for the best sources of Vitamin C, amla (gooseberry) is an ideal choice. “I highly recommend that you make a paste of amla and add it to a litre of drinking water. Sip on this throughout the day,” said Dr Nivedita Dadu, Nivedita Dadu’s Dermatology Clinic.