Updated: May 10, 2021
The Indian Gooseberry, Amla as its called in Hindi, and Amlaki in Sanskrit is revered for its many benefits in Ayurveda. An Amla a day keeps cold, cough and flu away!
It is one of the most commonly used Ayurvedic ingredients in herbal preparations and the main ingredient in Chyawanprash. This berry is packed with plenty of antioxidants, nutrients, and vitamins. Amla supports many functions of our body including immunity, absorption of nutrients, anti-aging, and elimination of toxins from our bodies.
Ayurvedic Properties of Amla:
Botanical name: Emblica Officinalis
Indian gooseberry is a perennial shrub, and this tree is worshipped in Hinduism along with holy basil- Tulsi plant.
Taste (Rasa): Amla has all the tastes, except for salty. Sweet, Sour, Pungent, and astringent. But the sour taste is prominent and dominating.
Post digestive taste (Vipaaka): Sweet taste. Fun fact - chew on a piece of Amla and take a cup of water to find it sweet. The after taste of Amla is interestingly sweet.
Potency ( Virya): Coolant
Effect on Doshas: Amlaki balances all the three doshas
Amla can be eaten raw, pickled, sauteed, chutneys, or soups.
According to Maharshi Charak, Amlaki can be taken daily. Below are some benefits from Amlaki
Anti-aging and anti-cancer
Rich in Vitamin C, so may help to keep colds and flu at bay
Good for your eyes, according to Charak Samhita
May be useful in diabetes, urinary tract infection and bleeding disorders
Can regulate the production of cholesterol with cardioprotective abilities
It helps with better absorption of iron.
Try this Amla sunflower seed pesto recipe for balancing all your doshas
3 whole fruits of Amla
1 bunch of cilantro
1 chili pepper
½ cup of sunflower seeds to taste
Himalayan pink salt for taste
Optional seasoning: Sesame oil with asafoetida (Hingu)
De-seed Amla and chop them into small pieces. Blend all the ingredients to a puree and season with hingu oil. Enjoy the pesto as a chutney or a spread.
Zhao, Tiejun, et al. “Anticancer Properties of Phyllanthus Emblica (Indian Gooseberry).” Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity, Hindawi Publishing Corporation, 2015, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4477227/.