Himalayas to an altitude of 1000m.It is usually found in
A small or medium sized tree with branchlets 10-20 cm
long. Leaves are linear and small and feathery and smell
like lemon. Flowers are greenish yellow in color, small
in size and unisexual. Fruit is globose, depressed,
about 2cm in diameter, with 6 prominent lines, greenish
when tender and yellow when mature, sour and astringent
followed by sweet taste.
Dried fruit, seed, leaves, root, bark, and flowers.
Tonic, erythrogenic, digestive, laxative, refrigerant,
diuretic, laxative, gastric acidity regulator,
expectorant, anti-inflammatory, restorative tonic,
regulates blood sugar, aphrodisiac, nervine tonic,
haemostatic, stomachic, antibacterial, antiviral.
Action and uses in Ayurveda
Rasa, all except lavana, kashayam dominates, seeth
veeryam, mathur vepakam, tridosha haram, rasayanam,
iacreases sukram, dha prashamani, cakshusya, kesya,
medhya, rochni, dipani, hrdya, vrihya, medohara,
Bleeding, piles, anemia, diabetes, gout, vertigo,
obesity, all types of diabetes, hyperacidity, eczema,
psoriasis, hoarse voice, sore throat, inflammation,
hiccoughs, hepatitis B, urethritis, sterility,
gingivitis, glaucoma, diarrhea, constipation, active
fistula, loss of hair, melanoma, inflammation of lungs,
dyspepsia, headache, biliousness, gastritis,
osteoporosis, liver and splenic weakness, palpitation,
Iron, calcium, silica, magnesium, B12, C, K. Fruit pulp
contains moisture 81%, 5% proteins, fat1%, mineral
matter 7%, fiber3.4%, carbohydrates 14%, calcium 0.05%
and potassium 0.02%, iron 0.5mg/100g, nicotinic
acid2mg/100g and vitamin C 600mg/100g. Fresh amla
contains about 20 times more vitamin C than orange
juice. Friuit is high in pectin & phyllemblin. Dry fruit
contains tannins and 3-4 colloidal complexes. Other
components are phyllembic acid, lipids, gallic acid,
emblicol, mucic acid, ellagic acid, and glucose. Seeds
contain a fixed oil, phosphatides, and some essential
oil with linolenic, linoleic, oleic, stearic, palmitic,
myristic acids, and proteolytic and lipolytic enzymes.
Properties and action
Rasa: amla, kasaya, madhura, tikta, katu.
Guna: ruksha, guru
Karma: tridosh-har, vrsya, rasayan, chaksusya.
Decoctions, infusions, powder, and paste.
Therapeutic classification index
Amla has action on following anatomical systems of body:
- Central nervous system: it is used as a
memory booster. Powder of seeds is used to enhance
intellect. Infusion for seeds is used for
- Blood and haemopoeitic tissue: dried amla
is used to check bleeding. Amla powder is taken with
loh bhasam helps in anemia. Pregnant women are
advised to take ripe fruit of amla throughout
pregnancy to combat anemia. It has erythrogenic
properties i.e. it enhances production of red blood
cells. Infusion of seeds is used as a blood
- Cardiovascular system: It stimulates the
heart, produces coronary dilation and peripheral
vasoconstriction. Therefore, its action is adrenergic
but it is neither completely like adrenaline nor like
ephedrine. Phyllemblin, an active principle isolated
from the 80% alcoholic extract of Emblica Officinalis
acts on cardiovascular and other systems partly like
adrenaline and partly like ephedrine. The
investigations support the use of this drug by
Avicenna (Sheikh Bu Ali Sina) in the treatment of
cardiovascular diseases and its present use in
cardiovascular and chest diseases in the Indian
systems of medicine.
- Digestive system: dried amla is appetizer.
Infusion of seeds is carminative. Leaves with
buttermilk help to cure indigestion. Trifala
powder is an equal mixture of dried fruits from three
plants, namely Terminalia chebula, Terminalia
bellirica and Emblica Officinalis. This is used to
co-ordinate digestion, nutrient absorption and
metabolic processes. Fresh juice is mild laxative
(helps the functioning of liver.). Decoction of
amla leaves is used in stomatitis. Dried fruit
powder controls diarrhea.
- Respiratory system: Infusion of seeds is
used in asthma and bronchitis and
tuberculosis. Fresh fruit is used in inflammation
of the lungs. Fruit pulp of Emblica Officinalis is a
rich source of vitamin C and provides vitamin C in
most stable form. Its bioavailability in cases of
pulmonary tuberculosis is much better than synthetic
vitamin C. It possesses powerful expectorant activity
by directly stimulating the mucous cell of the
bronchial tree. In addition the extract has mild
- Skin: it is used in eczema and psoriasis.
- Nutrition and metabolism: amla juice in
different combinations is used to control blood sugar
therefore is used in diabetes. It contains 600mg/100g
of vitamin C and is used as an immunomodulator
and to treat scurvy.
- Genito-urinary system: fresh juice is
diuretic. Paste of amla leaves if applied on abdomen
helps in dysuria and excessive menstrual bleeding.
Powder of raw fruit is used in chronic vaginal
- Musculoskeletal system: the whole plant
prevents sudden muscular\r contraction, is
antispasmodic, and relieves pain.
- Eye: it is considered as a prime herb for
treatment of eyes. In inflammation of eyes it lowers
down pita without hampering the other two
doshas. It improves near sightedness and is used
in cataract as it has antioxidant properties
and free radicals stand as one cause of cataract.
Fresh juice from ripe amla is instilled in eyes in
conjunctivitis and its decoction is used to wash
eyes in severe infection and pain.
- Immunity system: seeds infusion is a tonic
and is used in general debility. It is known to
improve immunity of the body and helps to control
infection. The plant as a whole promotes resistance
towards illness and counteracts infection. It is a
potent anti-inflammatory herb and is used in piles,
gastritis, colitis etc. Emblica Officinalis
strengthened the defense mechanisms against free
radical damage induced during stress. The effect of
Emblica Officinalis appeared to depend on the ability
of target tissues to synthesize prostaglandins.
- Hair: it prevents graying of hair and
promotes their growth making them strong and free from
Anti tumor activity of amla
Aqueous extract of amla was found to be cytotoxic to
L 929 cells in culture in a dose dependent manner.
Chyavanprash an herbal preparation of amla was found
to reduce ascites and solid tumors in mice
induced by DLA cells. Researches confirm the activity of
herb on melanoma.
Hepatoprotective activity of amla
Hepatoprotective activity of amla and chyavanprash were
studied on carbon tetrachloride (CCL4) induced liver
injury model in rats. Both were found to inhibit
hepatotoxicity produced by acute and chronic CCL4. The
level of liver lipid peroxides (LPO), glutamate pyruvate-
transaminase (GPT) and alkaline phosphatase (ALP) was
remarkably reduced and so was the fibrosis prevented.
Antioxidant activity of amla
The antioxidant activity of amla resides in tannoids f
fruits of plant, which have vitamin C like properties,
rather than vitamin C itself. The antioxidant activity
of tannoid active principle of amla consisting of
emblicanin A (37%), emblicanin B (33%), punigluconin
(12%), and pedunculagin (14%), was investigated on the
basis of their effects on rat brain frontal cortical and
striatal concentrations of oxidative free radical
scavenging enzymes, superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase
(CAT) and glutathione peroxidase (GPX) and lipid
Activity of amla in acute pancreatitis
An increased amount of smooth endoplasmic reticulum and
small condensed granules embedded in vacuole with
healthy lacinar cells were seen in dogs with acute
Effect of amla on serum cholesterol
It was seen that amla reduces serum cholesterol, aortic
cholesterol and hepatic cholesterol significantly in
Effect of amla on lipids
Amla prevents lipid peroxidation in cell membranes
therefore is used in obesity.
Amla a source of vitamin C
It is probably the richest source of vitamin C. the
fruit juice contains nearly 20 times as much vitamin C
as orange juice. A tannin containing gallic acid,
egallic acid and glucose in its molecule and naturally
present in the fruits prevent the oxidation of vitamin
and renders fruit valuable in vitamin C.
Fresh juice 10-20 ml
Capsule Amalaki contains pure and concentrated amla.
Dosage of one capsule twice a day
Package size: 60 capsules
- Dr.KM Nadkarni, The Indian Materia Medica, Vol.I,
- Prof P.V Sharma, Dravya Guna Vigyana, Vol II, pg
- The Ayurvedic Pharmacopoeia Of India, Part I,
Vol.I, pg 4-5