Amalaki also known as amla or Indian Gooseberry, belongs to a group of herbs described in Ayurvedic texts as rasayana. According to Ayurveda, rasayana herbs promote longevity, induce nourishment, and prevent the effects of aging. Modern science has been equally fascinated by Amalaki. One study even referred to it as “the Ayurvedic wonder,” as it supports everything from digestion to elimination, immunity, and inner and outer skin health. (1) Amalaki has repeatedly shown to support heart and arterial health, healthy blood sugar levels, cholesterol levels already within the normal range, and overall vitality. (2-7)
Suggested Use: Take 1 capsule 3 times per day after meals or as directed by your health care professional.
Bottle Contains: 90 vegetarian capsules, 500mg each
Ingredients: Organic Phyllanthus emblica (Amla Fruit) (Go to Ayurvedic Herbal Makeup)
Does not contain: Yeast, gluten, corn, soy, milk, fish, animal products, binders, fillers, preservatives or artificial coloring.
Kosher Certified: No animal derivatives
Healthy intestinal skin is a requirement to reduce digestive bloating and inhibit belly fat accumulation. In one animal study, amalaki inhibited weight gain and fatty build-up while on a high-fat diet. (8) In addition, amalaki balances the body’s fat metabolic pathways, supporting healthy weight, arterial skin, liver function, and cholesterol. (9)
Amalaki may be most well-known for its support of antioxidant activity and healthy skin via the encouragement of collagen and elastin production. In this way, amalaki supports not only the health of the outer skin, but also the inner skin that lines the gut, respiratory tract, and all the mucous membranes of the body.
Amalaki has shown in studies to support healthy liver cells by increasing the natural production of superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase and glutathione. (10) In one animal study, amalaki demonstrated protective effects against acute alcohol-induced brain mitochondrial dysfunction. Scientists theorize that this may be a result of amalaki’s antioxidant and free-radical scavenging properties. (11)
Amalaki’s beneficial effect on the cardiovascular system has recently earned this Ayurvedic fruit international attention. In the same way, amalaki supports the intestinal skin, it also supports the body’s natural regulation of the endothelial linings of blood vessels. (12-13)
The inner lining of the arteries is the most vulnerable to the ravages of glycation and oxidation, making it perhaps one of the most important tissues of the body to maintain. (14)
Amalaki has shown to improve high-density lipoprotein (HDL) levels and lower triglycerides in otherwise healthy adults. (6) In one study, amalaki raised healthy HDLs by an astonishing 18%. Across the board, amalaki was linked to healthy cholesterol. (15)
In laboratory studies with cultured endothelial cells, amalaki was linked to increased nitric oxide serum levels and available electrolytes. This is evidence for how it supports healthy arteries. (16)
Amalaki has been shown to support healthy lipid levels in the blood via an important metabolic pathway. PPAR-alpha is a metabolic sensor that regulates blood lipid metabolism. As the body ages, this sensor can lose efficacy, resulting in reduced metabolism of lipids via genetic misfiring. The administration of amalaki in aged animal models has been shown to significantly improve PPAR-alpha’s ability to fire, resulting in improved lipid metabolism. (17)
Amalaki and Eye Health
Ayurveda traditionally uses two herbs to support eye health: triphala and amalaki. Science is now beginning to support this ancient wisdom. The antioxidants and vitamin C constituents of amalaki have shown to support healthy lens clarity and overall eye health. (1, 23-24) The eye is lined with epithelium or skin, and studies further support the concept that amalaki is beneficial for all types of skin in the body. (1)
What Makes Amalaki the Best Vitamin C Berry?
There is much controversy over how much vitamin C is actually in amalaki. Some say there is barely any, while other sources say it has 20 times the amount of vitamin C as an orange. Still, others say it has 60 times the vitamin C of an orange, while others assert it has as much as 200-300 times more vitamin C content than an orange!
We know that the average amalaki berry, according to the USDA, is about 22.5 grams by weight.
According to one study, the amount of vitamin C in one amalaki berry is 5.38mg/gram. So, 5.38mg/gram x 22.5 grams = 121mg of vitamin C per amalaki berry. (7)
A medium orange weighs about 130 grams and has about 70mg of vitamin C. If we were to compare the vitamin C content in an orange to an amalaki berry, pound for pound, the amalaki berry would have 10 times more vitamin C than the orange!
However, 1 gram of amalaki power (which is two 500mg capsules) doesn’t even contain 11mg of vitamin C. While taking amalaki as a supplement will not supply us with a large amount of vitamin C, it can contribute many health benefits that are largely attributed to vitamin C.
Most scientific studies attribute the health benefits of amalaki to its potent antioxidant capabilities which, according to one study, is due to its vitamin C content. Research suggests that vitamin C is responsible for 45-70% of these antioxidant properties, which drive most of its health benefits. (6) It seems that a small amount of all-natural vitamin C goes a long way in boosting health benefits and longevity.
Perhaps nature never intended for us to be ingesting mega dosages of vitamin C, as the modest amounts found in plants deliver a plethora of health benefits that are arguably more well-rounded than over-the-counter vitamin C tablets.
It seems nature’s most powerful asset is its ability to take a small amount of vitamin C and use it to activate an entire matrix of chemicals that deliver a multitude of health benefits. Amalaki is considered by many to be Ayurveda‘s most powerful fruit and it seems to employ this “less is more” approach to health better than most.
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