Are Gooseberries Good For You?
Page Medically Reviewed and Edited by Cyrus Khambatta, PhD
When I start talking about Amla Green Tea, I am sometimes almost stopped mid-sentence, usually around the time I start talking about Indian Gooseberries.
People always ask me, “Are Gooseberries really good for you?”
My answer is always YES! But here’s why I get asked this all the time:
Not many people, unless you’re from India, really know what Indian Gooseberries are—let alone how good these potent little berries can be for you.
In fact, if you look at almost every single list of superfoods, Indian Gooseberries are never on it.
Even though Indian Gooseberries, also known as Amla, is considered the “king” of antioxidants and few people really know what they are or what they can do for your body.
Indian Gooseberries are:
Now, each one of these has made the superfood list, due to the antioxidant power they contain.
Very soon, Indian Gooseberries will top the list as the strongest antioxidant, because they have dominated the ORAC scale, with a whopping antioxidant score of 261,500.
(The ORAC scale is a lab test that determines how powerful a food is against free radicals by assessing total antioxidant capacity of the food.)
In case you need more reasons why Indian Gooseberry should be part of your nutrition plan, just take a look at these powerful benefits …
The Health Benefits Of Indian Gooseberry
Indian gooseberry contains so much antioxidant power, that colds, high blood sugar, and high cholesterol don’t stand a chance when gooseberries are part of your diet.
Most of the benefits you get from Indian Gooseberry may be due to the high vitamin C content.
Vitamin C may help Amla strengthen your immune system, retard the aging process, enhance food absorption, and fortify your liver.
Plus, Amla has been used for thousands of years in Ayurvedic medicine to treat issues related to hair and skin, diabetes, and the immune system.
But the benefits of Amla go far beyond this.
In fact, here are some benefits you may see when including Amla into your daily nutrition plan:
- Boost Immunity
In order to keep yourself healthy, you need to have a strong and powerful immune system, which most people may not have.
However, using Amla may help give it a much needed boost. Besides the vitamin C, it is also a rich source of vitamin A, polyphenols, alkaloids, and flavonoids, such as quercetin and kaempferol.
In ancient practice, Amla was used to increase white blood cell count, which (as you may know) are the main fighters for the immune system.
White blood cells attack dangerous bacteria and virus that may be present in the body and the bloodstream, therefore eradicating them in order to keep you healthy.
The powerful antioxidants found in Amla may help trigger white blood cell production, resulting in a stronger immune system.
- Stabilizes Diabetes
There are millions of people around the world that suffer from Type 2 Diabetes. This disease, characterized by high blood sugar levels and an ineffective insulin response, may lead to other potential issues, such as heart disease, neuropathy, and blindness.
But Amla may be able to help! You see, this tiny little superfood also contains chromium, which could stabilize—and even lower—blood sugar levels.
Chromium has been shown to stimulate the pancreas into producing insulin therefore it could have powerful effects on your blood sugar levels and for reducing your risk for diabetes—or even possibly reversing type 2 diabetes.
- Heart Disease Prevention
There are numerous ways in which Amla helps to protect your heart. Let’s start with chromium.
As you know, chromium may stimulate insulin production, therefore reducing blood sugar levels. But that’s not all chromium can do.
Chromium may also lower LDL levels (or bad cholesterol), which could prevent blockages from occurring in the arteries of your body—and especially those that lead to the heart.
Lowering your LDL and total cholesterol may greatly reduce the risk for stroke or heart attacks.
- Slows the Aging Process
It’s sad to say, but everyone is getting older. And with each passing year, wrinkles, age spots, dry skin, and other blemishes may occur.
This may cause you and your skin to look older than you really are. One reason for this is the activity of free radicals in your body.
Free radicals are scavengers that destroy healthy tissue. Therefore, free radicals contribute to premature aging.
The high vitamin C levels found in Amla may destroy free radicals—or greatly reduce free radical activity—which could reverse aging, therefore giving you a more youthful appearance with smoother, softer looking skin.
- Could Even Prevent Cancer
No one likes talking about the ugly “C” word …
But cancer is something that we should all be talking about. There are many people that are living with cancer … have just been recently diagnosed … or have died from cancer.
This disease is one of the top three killers, and will continue to be until we can find a way to slow the disease.
Amla may be one of those ways. Studies show that Amla may protect against a number of different forms of cancer, by slowing tumor growth.
How does this tiny fruit help prevent cancer? Studies suggest the high antioxidant power found in Amla may lower free radical damage, which could protect your health from chronic diseases, such as cancer and heart disease.
The Take Home Message of Gooseberries
When people ask me, “are gooseberries really good for you?”, I just show them these powerful benefits.
Packed with vitamin C, polyphenols, antioxidants, and flavonoids, gooseberries may be THE most powerful berry around.
In fact, Amla may contain more antioxidant power than most of the popular superfoods.
It has been used for centuries as a medicinal fruit, but is gaining popularity as a true superfood.
Amla's Gooseberry Tea
Amla (Indian gooseberry) may protect your heart, reduce cancer risk, reverse aging, prevent or reduce symptoms associated with diabetes, and may boost your immune system.
However there is only one issue with Amla—it tastes awful! But we have found a way for you to get all the potent health benefits of Amla by blending with non-GMO , dark oolong green tea leaves to provide a smooth, mild-flavored green tea that could flood your body with the nutrients and antioxidants you need—when the time is right.
And, for the first time ever, we are making this delicious, yet smooth, tea available to you …
Biswas G, Jagatkumar B, Hemavathi KG. A comparative clinical study of hypolipidemic efficacy of Amla (Emblica officinalis) with 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl-coenzyme-A reductase inhibitor simvastatin. Indain J Pharmacol. 2012. Mar-Apr;44(2):238-242.
Zhao, T. Sun Q. Marques M. Witcher M. Anticancer Properties of Phyllanthus emblica (Indian Gooseberry). Oxid Med Cell Longev. 2015;2015:950890.
Page Medically Reviewed and Edited by
Cyrus Khambatta, PhD
Cyrus Khambatta, PhD, is a cofounder of Mastering Diabetes and Amla Green is an internationally recognized nutrition and fitness coach who has been living with type 1 diabetes since 2002. Using an evidence-based approach to nutrition and fitness, he first reduced his own insulin usage by more than 40%, and has educated thousands of people with all forms of diabetes how to reverse insulin resistance using food as medicine. Cyrus earned a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Stanford University in 2003, then earned a PhD in Nutritional Biochemistry from the University of California at Berkeley in 2012. He is the co-host of the annual Mastering Diabetes Online Summit, a featured speaker at the Plant-Based Nutrition and Healthcare Conference (PBNHC), the American College of Lifestyle Medicine (ACLM) Conference, Plant Stock, and has been featured on Forks Over Knives, NPR, PBS, KQED, Fast Company, and is the author of the upcoming book Mastering Diabetes.
- Kevin DiDonato