Lifestyle, Nutrition, Recipe Corner

Amla Benefits Usage and Recipes

amla-benefits-usage-and-recipes

The humble Amla or Indian Gooseberry is an inexpensive superfood. It is touted as one of the best sources of immunity boosting vitamins and used for multiple health benefits since traditional times. It is low in calories & fat but rich in

  • Fiber
  • Copper
  • Manganese
  • Potassium
  • Vit C, B5 & B6
  • Antioxidants

Thus,

  1. It gives a boost to your immunity: Vitamin C rich amla can give a boost to your immunity. Vitamin C is important for children, adults, and the elderly.
  2. It is good for your heart health: Content of Vitamin C in amla is great for your heart health. It strengthens and thickens arteries in your heart. This is especially important for people who have high levels of bad cholesterol.
  3. Amla is good for skin and hair: Health skin and hair is vastly dependent on your intake of Vitamin C. Vitamin C helps collagen perform in the right way, thus improving your skin quality and making it tighter. Amla gives you the glowing skin you have always aspired for. You can mix amla powder with yogurt and apply it as a face mask.

For hair, you can mix amla powder with water of coconut oil or sesame oil and massage it deep into your scalp. It can help in getting rid of dandruff, dry skin on your scalp, and improve your hair quality.

  1. It reduces inflammation: Free radicals in the body can damage the heart, skin and even hampers our immunity. This is because free radicals cause inflammation, which is basically the root causes of a majority of diseases. Antioxidants in amla help in neutralising free radicals and reduce inflammation in the body
  2. Amla is a rich source of fibre: You must include fibre in your diet for a healthy digestive system. However, make sure that you don’t go overboard with consuming fibre as it can irritate your bowel and increase risks of irritable bowel syndrome. Include just the right amount of fibre in your diet to stay away from constipation, acidity and stomach ulcers. Amla stimulates the production of acid in the stomach, thereby reducing hyperacidity and ulcers.
  3. It is great for diabetes: Amla contains chromium which is great for stabilising your blood sugar levels. It improves insulin sensitivity of your cells, which can be beneficial for people with type 2 diabetes.

Here are some ways you can reap the benefits of Amla !

Amla Juice:

  • 3-4 amla
  • A tbsp of organic raw unpasteurised honey
  • One inch finely chopped ginger
  • One fourth tsp of salt and black pepper each
  • A tsp of cumin powder
  • 2 cups water (around 400-500ml)
  • Mint/coriander leaves for garnish

Method:

  1. Chop the amla and add in a blender with salt, pepper and cumin. Blend it till it becomes paste.
  2. Remove in a jar and mix the honey and water (can add ice cubes as well). Garnish with a tbsp of crushed mint or coriander leaves and ginger.
  3. Drink around 150ml of this to feel refreshed and energised.

Amla Tea:

  • Half to one tsp amla powder
  • Half tsp grated ginger
  • One cardamom
  • 1 tsp raw honey
  • 200ml water

Method:

Boil the water with grated ginger and cardamom for 5 mins, strain and remove in a cup. Then add Amla powder and steep it for 5 mins. At the end add honey, mix and drink it.

Amla chutney:

  • Amla 3-4
  • Coriander leaves 2 tbsp
  • Green chilly 2
  • A small piece of ginger piece
  • Pinch of jeera/cumin
  • Pinch of hing/asafoetida
  • Rai (mustard) and cumin seeds ¼ tsp
  • A tsp of sesame seeds
  • Salt to taste
  • Oil or ghee around 2 tsp

Method

  1. Soak amla in hot water for five minutes and peel skin. Remove seed.
  2. Add coriander leaves, green chilly, ginger, jeera, salt. Put in the mixer and make a paste without water.
  3. Heat oil, add hing-rai-cumin and sesame seeds. Temper the paste with this, and mix.

Amla pickle:

  • 15 Indian Gooseberry /amla
  • 3 cup Water
  • 4-5 tsp rock salt
  • 1/2 tsp organic Turmeric Powder
  • 2 inch Ginger
  • 2 tsp jeera powder

Method

  1. Wash amla’s and keep aside.
  2. In a pan add water, rock salt and turmeric and let it come to a rolling boil.
  3. Now add the whole amla’s in the water switch off the gas and cover.
  4. When you see cracks/ slits in the amla segments it’s the indication that it is done now.
  5. Take out one amla and press it slightly if the slits open up easily then it’s done now.
  6. Let it cool at room temperature.
  7. If you want to add sliced ginger and jeera powder then add them when the water cools down completely.
  8. Fill the amla along with the water in a sterilized glass jar and keep it at room temperature, after 2-3 days you can store it in the refrigerator and use it for 6 months.

 Amla candy:

  • 250 gm of amla/gooseberry (seeds removed by slightly soaking them in hot water and cutting them into slices)
  • 150 gm organic jaggery powder
  • 2 tsp rock salt
  • 1 tsp jeera powder (cumin powder)

Method:

  1. Coat Amla with jaggery, jeera powder and rock salt.
  2. Keep this mixture aside for 2 days. You will see that amla lets out some water.
  3. Sieve this water but don’t discard as it can be used for cooking preparation.
  4. After removing the water, sundry the amla for 2-3 days.
  5. Avoid drying it completely and make sure there is little moisture left.
  6. Once they are ready, just sprinkle jaggery and store them in airtight

Hair :

Amla Hair Dye

Henna can be mixed with Amla powder and soaked in an iron vessel overnight. (You can skip the henna if needed). It would be black but won’t stay that long as normal dye. Instead of plain water use tea decoction for mixing this.

Note: can use coffee decoction or beetroot puree to add different colour.

Apply and keep it for 2 hours on hair, then wash off with mild shampoo.

Oil for Hair fall:

  • Take 3 cups of VCO (Virgin coconut oil)
  • Add 15 shallots
  • 1/3 cup each: methi powder
  • Amla powder
  • Shikakai powder
  • Curry leaves

Method: Use a double boiling method and use 2 cups of coconut oil with all the ingredients, bring everything to a boil. Leave it overnight to cool. Take another cup of cold pressed coconut oil , boil it separately and add the oil mixture to it(straining is required). Add 20ml of essential oil rosemary and Argan oil(optional)

Skin:

Amla face scrub: Mix a tsp of amla and a tsp of rice flour with a tsp of Rose water and gently scrub the face for 5 minutes. Then keep it for 5 minutes and wash off with lukewarm water.

Amla face mask: Mix 1 tsp amla powder, 1 tsp honey 1-2 tsp homemade curd to make a quick face mask. Leave it on for approximately 15-20 min and then rinse it off with cold water.

Video Link: https://youtu.be/wCuDcMwETsQ

 

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Luke Coutinho

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