Gooseberry (Amla) is one of the most popular medicinal fruits. Even though the leaf, peel and sprig of gooseberry plants are used for medicinal purposes, the berry is the cream of the crop.
Brahma rasayanam, which has gooseberry as its prime ingredient, occupies the top position in the list enumerated in ‘Rasayanadhikara’ of Ayurvedic texts. Gooseberry is a food and medicine at the same time, for building health and immunity. It has an unusual capability to retain Vitamin C, regardless of how long you preserve it or heat it. A storehouse of Vitamins A and B, gooseberry also contains calcium, iron, ellagic acid, gallic acid and tannic acid.
Go for gooseberry, everyday!
Gooseberry (also known as Phyllanthus emblica) belongs to Euphorbiaceae family. In Sanskrit, gooseberry is known as Amruta, Amlaka, Dhatri and Dhatrika.
Medical applications of gooseberry
» To keep wrinkles and gray hair away: Take a bath with water boiled with gooseberry and cooled. You could also eat a raw gooseberry every day and drink water, boiled with gooseberry and cooled, everyday.
» Daily intake of a mixture prepared with equal quantity of raw gooseberry juice, heart-leaved moon seed juice and arrowroot flour mixed with honey is an effective remedy for Asthisraavam.
» Mix equal amounts of powdered gooseberry, chebulic myrobalan, beleric myrobalan and long pepper in honey and consume the mixture twice a day. This could help cure chest infections.
» A mixture of equal quantities of raw gooseberry juice, turmeric juice and heart-leaved moon seed juice taken daily is an effective remedy for diabetics.
» Gargle thrice a day, post meals, with raw gooseberry juice or with a dried gooseberry concoction for treating mouth ulcers.
» Early graying of hair: Boil water with gooseberries and wait for it to cool down. Frequently, wash your hair with it. Remove the seeds out of gooseberries, grind the flesh, make a paste by mixing it with rice water and apply the paste on your hair. Take a bath after half an hour.
» Apply a mixture of gooseberry peels and butter milk to tackle the issue of heat rashes.
Dry climate is ideal for gooseberry cultivation. Choose areas where you get plenty of sunlight. Sow seeds or plant grafted or budded saplings during the months of May and June.
A variety of juices can be prepared with gooseberry. Add necessary ingredients with gooseberry, mash it in a juicer, add sugar for taste and serve. You have a tasty drink rich in health benefits.
1. For a glowing skin: Ingredients: Gooseberries 100 grams, cucumber 150 grams, ginger three grams, mint leaves one gram, cool water 200 ml and honey as needed.
2. For a charming body: Ingredients: Gooseberries 100 grams, carrot 150 grams, mint leaf one gram, cool water 200 ml, sugar syrup or honey as needed. This juice can improve your heart’s functions.
3. For high blood pressure: Ingredients: Gooseberries 100 grams, Epsom salt fried and powdered two grams, mint leaf one gram, water 200 ml and 5 curry leaves.
4. Diabetic patients: Ingredients: Gooseberries 100 grams, turmeric powder 2 grams, Epsom salt fried and powdered one gram, powdered pepper 500 ml and water 200 ml.
5. Gooseberry & butter milk drink: Ingredients: Gooseberries 50 grams, 5 curry leaves, ginger 5 grams, red onion one shred, cool water 100 ml, pure butter milk 100 ml, salt as needed.
(The author works at Oushadhi, Thrissur)