Amla; Nutritional Value, Health Benefits, Recipes

Amla / Gooseberry
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Amla / Gooseberry is undoubtedly a powerhouse of nutrients. It is an uncommon balance of sweet, sour, pungent and bitter flavors. It is one of the oldest edible fruits known in India. Amla, also known as the Indian Gooseberry. Various parts of the plant are used to treat a range of diseases, but the most important is the fruit.[1] The fruit is used either alone or in combination with other plants to treat many ailments such as common cold and fever; as a diuretic, laxative, liver tonic, refrigerant, stomachic, restorative, alternative, antipyretic, anti-inflammatory, hair tonic; to prevent peptic ulcer and dyspepsia and as a digestive. Preclinical studies have shown that amla possesses antipyretic, analgesic, antitussive, antiatherogenic, adaptogenic, cardioprotective, gastroprotective, antianemia, antihypercholesterolemic, wound healing, antidiarrheal, antiatherosclerotic, hepatoprotective, nephroprotective, and neuroprotective properties. In addition, experimental studies have shown that Amla and some of its phytochemicals such as gallic acid, ellagic acid, pyrogallol, some norsesquiterpenoids, corilagin, geraniin, elaeocarpusin, and prodelphinidins B1 and B2 also possess antineoplastic effects. Amla is also reported to possess radio modulator, chemomodulatory, chemopreventive effects, free radical scavenging, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antimutagenic and immunomodulatory activities, properties that are efficacious in the treatment and prevention of cancer.[2]

Nutritional Value of Amla / Gooseberry

Nutritional value per 100 g (3.5 oz)
Energy 184 kJ (44 kcal)
10.18 g
Dietary fiber 4.3 g
0.58 g
0.88 g
Vitamins Quantity%DV
Vitamin A equiv.

15 μg

Thiamine (B1)

0.04 mg

Riboflavin (B2)

0.03 mg

Niacin (B3)

0.3 mg

Pantothenic acid (B5)

0.286 mg

Vitamin B6

0.08 mg

Folate (B9)

6 μg

Vitamin C

27.7 mg

Vitamin E

0.37 mg

Minerals Quantity%DV

25 mg


0.07 mg


0.31 mg


10 mg


0.144 mg


27 mg


198 mg


1 mg


0.12 mg

Other constituents Quantity
Water 87.87 g
Percentages are roughly approximated using US recommendations for adults.
Source: USDA Nutrient Database

Health Benefits of Amla / Gooseberry

  • Boosts Immunity - Indian gooseberries are a natural immune booster as they contain a powerful cocktail of vitamins C and A, polyphenols, alkaloids, and flavonoids such as quercetin and kaempferol. [4] According to a study published in the International Journal of Pharmaceutics, Amla has potent antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. Amla juice, in Ayurveda, is often used to increase the white blood cells in the body, which are the main line of defense for the immune system since these cells attack and eliminate foreign toxins and substances into the bloodstream throughout the body.
  • Controls Diabetes - Gooseberry contains chromium, which has a therapeutic value for diabetic patients. It stimulates the isolated group of cells that secrete insulin. This reduces blood sugar in diabetic patients and keeps their body balanced and healthy. When blood sugar is reduced, glucose is used by the cells as functional energy. Thus, the metabolism is stronger and you have more energy, without the plunges and spikes in blood sugar that are dangerous for diabetics. [5] Chromium also enhances the effect of beta-blockers, which are used for heart health, by reducing the levels of LDL (bad) cholesterol in the body. Furthermore, a 2011 research on the effect of the [6] amla fruit on blood glucose and lipid profile of type 2 diabetics stated that it has anti-hyperglycemic and lipid-lowering properties
  • Aids in Digestion - Amla is very high in fiber, like most fruits. Fiber adds bulk to the stool and helps move food through the bowels and keeps their movements regular. This reduces the chances of constipation. Fiber can also bulk up loose stools and reduce diarrhea. It also stimulates the secretion of gastric and digestive juices, so food is digested efficiently, nutrients are absorbed in an optimal way, and you feel lighter and healthier. [7] A 2014 study published in the [8] American Journal of Food Technology found that the amla and amla powder retained water through analysis by methods given by Robertson et al. (2000). This property helps reduce constipation and can help protect you from various gastrointestinal disorders, and even colorectal cancer.
  • Prevents Heart Diseases - Amla powder strengthens the heart muscles, so the blood circulation is done throughout the body. [9] By reducing excess cholesterol buildup, chromium in amla powder can reduce the chances of atherosclerosis or plaque buildup in the vessels and arteries. This can reduce the chances of stroke and heart attack. The iron content in it promotes the creation of new red blood cells. Thereby, increasing circulation and the oxygenation of organs and cells to maximize growth and regeneration of tissues. Also, berries like blueberries and gooseberries have been proven to improve heart health.
  • Acts as a Diuretic - Besides being a fruit that is very high in water content, amla is also slightly diuretic in nature. [10] This means that it increases the frequency and volume of urination. Urination helps our body eliminate unwanted toxins and excess levels of water, salt, and uric acid. Furthermore, it can help you lose weight since up to 4% of urine is composed of fat. [11] Therefore, a diuretic substance is always necessary for keeping your kidneys healthy and for preventing urinary and uterine infections.
  • Anti-aging Agent - Amla prevents health-related hyperlipidemia by reducing the number of free radicals in the body through its antioxidant qualities. [12] Vitamin C and antioxidants help scavenge free radicals, which are associated with signs of aging like wrinkles and age spots. Amla powder is used as a face mask to remove age spots.
  • Eye Care - Drinking vitamin A-rich gooseberry juice with honey is good for improving eyesight. It helps improve near-sightedness and cataracts while reducing intra-ocular tension. This is mainly due to its impressive carotene content, which has long been known for its powerful effect on vision-related conditions, including those that stem from the free radical damage. [13] Vitamin A and carotenes improve your vision, while also lowering the risk of macular degeneration and night blindness.
  • Boosts Liver Health - Drinking amla juice, as per Ayurveda, boosts vitality and vigor, and the underlying reason for it is probably linked to its ability to re-energize the liver. [14] Liver health is not paid as much attention to, even though it affects a large part of the population. A 2013 study on the Hepatoprotective properties of the Indian gooseberry published in the Food & Function journal says the fruit is effective in preventing the toxic effects of excessive medication and toxic metals. [15] The presence of phytochemicals such as quercetin, gallic acid, corilagin, and ellagic acid in amla helps in free radical scavenging and in turn, detoxifying the body.
  • Treats Cancer - Amla extract has shown to have cytotoxic activity against cervical and ovarian cancer cells. Researchers from The Departments of Oncology and Experimental Medicine, McGill University, Montreal, Canada said that Phyllanthus Emblica extracts have strong tumor repressive properties against a number of cancer types. [16] Research published in the European Journal of Cancer Prevention shows that the tiny fruit is packed with potent polyphenols, flavonoids, and tannins, which makes it a powerful tool against a variety of conditions, including cancer and diabetes. [17]
  • Aids in Calcium Absorption - One of the less discussed benefits of the Indian gooseberry is how it helps the body absorb calcium in a positive way. Calcium is an essential component of our bones, teeth, and nails, and also ensures that we have beautiful lustrous hair. This is why drinking diluted amla juice on an empty stomach is recommended.
  • Improves Metabolic Activity - Eating foods that are high in protein like amla is one of the most important ways to stay healthy since proteins are an essential part of our body’s metabolic activities. Our enzymes can break down plant proteins into amino acids and reassemble them into usable proteins for our body. Protein is necessary for cellular growth, muscle development, organ health, and a wide range of metabolic activities that we need to remain healthy.
  • Treats Menstrual Cramps - The minerals and vitamins in the Indian gooseberry combine to make it very useful in the treatment of menstrual cramps. [18]Since it takes a while for the necessary elements to accrue in the body, it is better to consume amla on a regular basis so that its nutrients are always in the system and menstrual cramps can be prevented.
  • Relieves Diarrhea & Dysentery - Due to its strong cooling and laxative properties, amla powder is a useful component in remedies for diarrhea and dysentery, according to a study published in the International Journal of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences. [19] [20] It provides relief from the various gastric syndromes and hyperchlorhydria (burning sensation in the abdomen). As a laxative, it helps flush out toxins or harmful substances that cause discomfort or illness, so the healing process can begin. It then cools the burning sensation and reduces the discomfort often felt during diarrhea.
  • Improves Appetite - Consuming gooseberry powder with butter and honey before a meal improves appetite. [20] Amla powder also helps balance nitrogen levels, thereby increasing weight in a healthy way. In other benefits, Amla is also used as a remedy for fever, liver disorder, indigestion, anemia, urinary problems, respiratory problems, and cerebral, gastric, and cardiovascular illnesses. Gooseberry lowers cholesterol levels, increases red blood cell production, and strengthens teeth and nails.
  • Cures a sore throat and cold - Amla possesses anti-viral properties, it improves the immune response of the body. If consumed with ginger and honey, Amla can be quite effective in curing sore throat and cold as well.
  • Stress reliever  - Amla is an excellent stress- reliever. It helps in relieving stress by inducing the stress relieving hormones.
  • Cures insomnia- It can help in inducing sound sleep. Massage the scalp of your hair with amla oil for getting relief from headaches and having a peaceful uninterrupted sleep.
  • Prevents respiratory problems  -  Amla can alleviate asthma, chronic cough, tuberculosis and blocked chest as well. It is because of the presence of Vitamin C that it has a beneficial effect on respiratory disorders.
  • Cures for infections- Amla stimulates the defense mechanisms in the body. It is because of the antibacterial properties that it is able to prevent bacterial, viral and fungal infections. If amla is consumed on regular basis, the body would become resistant to diseases.
  • Bone health - As per research of several scientists, amla extracts can slow the activities of cells which make the bones brittle. It helps in strengthening of bones as it has rich iron contents.
  • Supports reproduction- As per Ayurveda, Amla helps in enhancing all seven tissues including the reproductive tissues. It helps in countering the problem which occurs while conceiving by revitalizing semen leading to improvising the quality of sperms in males.
  • Strengthens bones - Amla is excellent for strengthening bones not just because of its high calcium content, but also for the fact that it lowers osteoclasts [21]. These are the cells responsible for breaking up bones. Thus regularly consuming Amla will result in stronger bones.
  • Cools the body - Amla has three times the vitamin C of an orange. Vitamin C improves tannin levels in the body that shield from heat and light. It keeps your skin cool in the summer by regulating the heat.
  • Prevents constipation - Because of its high fiber content, Amla is great for the digestive system. A happy side-effect of this is its effectiveness against constipation.
  • Prevents jaundice - Because of its antibacterial nature, Amla prevents infections like jaundice and scurvy [22]. Consuming Amla on a daily basis in the liquid form is the most efficient way to fight off these infections.
  • Reduces the risk of cancer - Because Amla is rich in antioxidants, it has various medical applications. Superoxide dismutase, which fights free radicals and reduces cell damage, acts as a potent tool in the prevention of cancer [23].
  • It Protects your liver - Studies have shown that regular consumption of Amla can ward off the ill effects that alcohol has on your liver 24]. It also prevents the oxidative damage that is usually caused by them.
  • Makes skin Glow - Because it’s packed with vitamin C, Amla gives your skin a smooth and youthful look [25]. It is known to exfoliate skin and remove dead skin cells. Amla juice can also be used as a face mask. Simply leave it on your skin for 30 minutes and wash it off.
  • Prevents diseases like dementia and Alzheimer’s – Amla, if consumed regularly, increases concentration and boosts memory. It improves the nerve health by making a smoother passage for the flow of blood, facilitating oxygen transportation, protecting the nerve cells from radical damage hence preventing diseases like dementia and Alzheimer’s.
  • Prevents the formation of gallbladder stones – Consuming amla powder can be effective in preventing the formation of gallbladder stones as it possesses several medicinal properties.
  • Helps in weight-loss – If you want to lose weight, amla juice can do wonders to your body. It reduces the fat accumulation within the body by providing a boost to metabolical activities within the body.
  • Improves Cardiovascular health – Amla has several nutrients which help in preventing blockage within the heart. It is also effective in reducing bad cholesterol and controls hypertension. It helps in increasing the good cholesterol in the body and also helps in the maintenance of cholesterol levels.
  • Amla juice for diabetes  – Amla juice can be consumed with turmeric twice a day in order to prevent diabetes. It is a low sugar and a high fiber fruit which makes it a perfect item to be consumed by diabetes patients. Amla also helps in the secretion of insulin and reduces blood sugar in diabetic patients.
  • Aids digestion – Amla triggers the taste receptors which ultimately makes the digestive enzymes active. It is a fiber-rich fruit which strengthens the digestive system leading to improving the ability of the body to absorb nutrients from the food.
  • Reduces the risk of cancer – Amla helps in preventing tumor cell growth within the body because of its Oxidative Radiance Activity Capacity (ORAC) which prevents cell damage due to oxidative stress. It is because of the high levels of antioxidants in amla that the growth of carcinogenic cells gets restricted which ultimately prevents cancer cells growth in stomach, skin, and liver.
  • Helps in healing mouth ulcers –  Rinsing your mouth with amla powder helps in healing mouth ulcers, as amla possess several medicinal properties.
  • Helps in reducing the pain of arthritis patients – Amla has anti-inflammatory properties which help in reducing pain, and swelling of bones in arthritis.
  • An effective cure for constipation – Amla aids in keeping the gastrointestinal tract clean. It has cooling and laxative properties which are beneficial in preventing constipation.
  • Protects your liver – Amla has necessary nutrients with help in protecting the liver.
  • Blood purifier – Amla is an effective blood purifier because of the presence of necessary anti-oxidants. Consumption of amla juice can increase hemoglobin levels of the body.
  • Intestinal problems- Dried amla can cure all types of an intestinal problem if consumed on daily basis.
  • Provides ease in menstrual cramps – The minerals and vitamins present in amla help in preventing menstrual cramps.
  • Burns fat – Amla boosts metabolism which can help in reducing fat. One can consume amla juice before working out which will accelerate the reducing fat from the body.

Amla eyes benefits-

  • Improves eye-sight – It is believed the antioxidants present in amla protect the retina of the eye from oxidative stress.
  • Reduces risk of cataract – The antioxidants also help in reducing the risk of cataract.
  • How to use Amla – You can use the water of amla and wash eyes with it.

Amla hair benefits –

  • Prevents hair fall and dandruff – Amla nourishes the hair, contains a high level of Vitamin C which aids in the prevention of hair fall and generation of dandruff as well.
  • Prevents lice and greying of hair- Amla powder or paste can be effective in cleansing the hair. The antioxidant-rich amla enriches the pigmentation of hair, preventing the premature greying.
  • Accelerates growth of hair and makes them shiny- Massaging hair with amla oil can do wonders to the hair. It contains effective fatty acids which boost the growth of the hair and also makes them shiny.
  • Treats scalp problems – Amla is effective in reducing irritation or any other problem arising in the scalp due to the presence of anti-bacterial properties.
  • It is advised to wash your scalp with amla shampoo or amla powder once in a week to keep your hair healthy.

Amla skin benefits –

  • Anti-aging properties- Amla is potent in protecting the body by alleviating the oxidative stress hence slowing down the aging process.
  • Increases glow of skin – Consumption of amla juice can reduce the toxins present within the body which ultimately increases the glow of the skin.
  • Reduces skin irritation – Amla helps in eliminating toxins from the body hence reducing irritation within the skin.
  • Heals pimples – Amla, when applied directly ( paste of Amla) over pimples and acne, reduces oiliness and removes dirt from within the skin.
  • Prevents and reduces pigmentation – The presence of high levels of Vitamin C in amla helps in preventing as well as reducing skin pigmentation.
  • Prevents the formation of gallbladder stones - Extra cholesterol is the primary cause of gallbladder stones. Vitamin C converts the cholesterol into bile in the liver [26]. Consuming Amla regularly reduces the chances of a build-up of cholesterol as well as the likelihood of any pesky gallstones. It also keeps the gallbladder functioning well and in perfect health.
  • Prevents ulcers - Due to its antibacterial properties, Amla is a great way of preventing ulcers [27]. They reduce the acidity level in the body and thus avoid the formation of ulcers. Additionally, mouth ulcers can be caused by a deficiency of vitamin C. As Indian gooseberries are rich in vitamin C, they can provide relief from ulcers.
  • Is anti-inflammatory - It reduces the level of acid in the stomach and combats stomach inflammation. It also keeps the liver in check and flushes out unhealthy toxins.
  • Improves eyesight - If made a regular part of the diet, Amla has been known to improve eyesight [28]. It also helps in curing itchy, watery, and sore eyes.
  • Purifies blood - Because it is packed with antioxidants, Amla works as a blood purifier. It also increases hemoglobin and red blood cells count.

Recipes of Amla

Brightens Skin

Amla is effective for lightening the skin because of Vitamin C [29].

Chop up a few pieces of Amla and blend it till it forms a smooth paste.

You Will Need

  • Half a papaya
  • Amla paste
  • Honey

What You Need To Do

  1. Mash a few pieces of papaya in a bowl.
  2. Add half a teaspoon of Amla paste and half a teaspoon of honey to it.
  3. Mix well till the paste is smooth.
  4. Apply and leave it on for 15 minutes. Rinse it off with warm water.

Reduces Pigmentation

Amla has been known to reduce pigmentation. Some of the most popular face packs that use Amla are:

Amla Scrub

This is suitable for people with dry and normal skin.

You Will Need

  • Tamarind Paste
  • Amla Powder

What You Need To Do

  1. Add one teaspoon of tamarind paste to one teaspoon of Amla powder and mix well.
  2. Apply to the face with your fingertips. Gently massage into the skin in a circular motion.
  3. Rinse with warm water after 10 minutes.

Amla And Avocado Pack

This is suitable for people with dry skin.

You Will Need

  • Amla paste
  • An avocado

What You Need To Do

  1. Mix a tablespoon of Amla powder in water to form a smooth paste.
  2. To this, add two tablespoons of avocado pulp.
  3. Mix well and apply it to your face.
  4. After 20 minutes, rinse with warm water.

Amla Facial

This is suitable for people with dry and oily skin.

You Will Need

  • Yogurt
  • Honey
  • Amla paste

What You Need To Do

  1. Mix two tablespoons of yogurt with one tablespoon of honey and one tablespoon of Amla paste.
  2. Apply to your face. Rinse after 20 minutes.

Amla Anti-Aging Mask

This is suitable for people with oily skin.

You Will Need

  • Tea leaves
  • Honey
  • Amla paste

What You Need To Do

  1. Boil and strain tea leaves and let the water cool down.
  2. Add two tablespoons of tea water and one tablespoon of honey to Amla paste.
  3. Apply and wash with warm water after 10 minutes.

Prevents Lice

Amla oil is an effective treatment for lice. Just soak Amla in water and leave it on overnight. Mash them to make a soapy paste. Use this paste to wash your hair. This will help to get rid of the lice. Regularly using Amla oil will help moisturize the scalp and keep dandruff at bay.

Prevents Greying of Hair

If applied to the scalp regularly, Amla can help retain your hair’s natural color and prevent it from greying.

Helps Increase Hair Growth

Amla oil, if regularly applied to the hair, nourishes the scalp and roots and promotes the growth of long and healthy hair.

Amla Hair Masks

Strengthening Pack

You Will Need

  • Amla powder
  • Yogurt
  • Honey

What You Need To Do

  1. Mix two tablespoons of Amla powder with one tablespoon of yogurt and one tablespoon of honey in water.
  2. Apply to the hair strands and roots. Rinse with warm water after 30 minutes.

Anti Dandruff Pack

You Will Need

  • Amla powder
  • Shikakai powder
  • Yogurt

What You Need To Do

  1. Take two teaspoons of Amla and shikakai powder in a bowl.
  2. Add two tablespoons of yogurt to form a paste and apply it to your hair.
  3. Wash after 15 minutes with a mild shampoo.


Amla / Gooseberry

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