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Background Information on Amalaki

Amalaki, āmlā (आमला) in Hindi, ma khampom (มะขามป้อม) in Thai, amalika (अमलिक) in Sanskrit, anmole (庵摩勒) in Chinese — is a plant that comes to us through many long traditions of use in healing medicine. Recently modern research has revealed that amla is rich in bioactive tannins called Emblicanins, bound to vitamin C, with an incredible range of antioxidant activity. These discoveries provide a scientific basis for the many benefits observed during centuries of traditional use.

Background Information on Detoxification

Detoxification is an often misunderstood concept in human health. Our bodies have a perfectly good, inbuilt detoxification system which is working every second of every day to remove the waste products of everyday living from every cell in our body — this goes far beyond the common idea of just removing bulk solid waste from our bowels (though that is an important part of the process). If we were living in a pristine healthy natural world into which our bodies evolved, this inbuilt system would be perfectly adequate to cope with normal metabolic waste.

However, our modern lifestyle places a huge burden on this system and we may need some positive interaction to support and enhance the body’s natural detoxification ability. A useful analogy is your house — you keep it clean on a regular basis, but dirt still builds up in those hard to reach corners, behind the furniture or in the fabric of your soft furnishings. Your environment gradually overwhelms your regular maintenance cleaning and you need to do a special «spring clean» — you may even wear a dust mask, gloves or old clothes to protect yourself during this special cleanup!

The keys to the body’s detoxification system are:

  • correct functioning of your liver and kidneys;
  • healthy digestive system;
  • correct LDL:HDL balance;
  • adequate amounts of sulphur in your diet;
  • enough fibre in your diet;
  • adequate fluid intake;
  • antioxidants to prevent damage as toxins are taken out of storage and repackaged for transport out of the body;
  • bitter-tasting foods on your tongue to trigger the whole process.

Core Findings of Amalaki’s Effectiveness in Detoxification

Amalaki’s antioxidant activity[1] is primarily due to its high vitamin C content. Amalaki has also been shown to exhibit vitamin E-like activity[2] (vitamin E operates to protect cell walls from the inside) and boosts the therapeutic activity of other medicinal compounds. Amalaki also exhibits free radical scavenging[3] ability both on its own and when combined with other herbs. A comprehensive study testing over 1,000 edible herbs[4] found amalaki to be one of the four top antioxidant plants available.

A 2010 study on oxidative stress also found that amalaki protects the liver[5] from chemical damage. A 2009 Thai study[6] supported the liver protective properties of amalaki and also noted cell protective properties as well as reducing oxidative stress in many pathological conditions.


Any natural product is only as good as its raw materials and the process with which they are preserved. Here at Amrita we have found a way to bring you all the benefits of amalaki in a dynamically freeze-dried powder.

We make sure that our raw amalaki is sourced from sustainably harvested amalaki trees natively grown in pristine Northern Thailand ensuring no chemicals or pesticides are used in the cultivation. Then our amalaki is dynamically freeze-dried within hours of harvesting which means we are quick to capture plant value before it starts degrading. Dynamic Freeze Dry is a unique drying process that preserves the very best of the plant, without heating or mechanical crushing.

We are the only medicinal plant supplier in Asia that has all three key components for best therapeutic effect of the plant: organic raw material, fresh harvest and drying process that keeps the plant value.

Warning: when buying medicinal herb and plant or its derivatives, always request information on raw material origin, time from harvest to the processing facilities and nature of the processing. This will help you to avoid risks of buying useless or even harmful product.

Author: Graham Rowe, Chief Naturopath, Amrita Retreat
Publication date: May 2014
Enquiries: health@amritaretreat.com

  1. P. Scartezzini, F. Antognoni, M.A. Raggi, F. Poli, C. Sabbioni. Vitamin C content and antioxidant activity of the fruit and of the Ayurvedic preparation of EmblicaofficinalisGaertn. Journal of Ethnopharmacology Volume 104, Issues 1–2, 8 March 2006, Pages 113–118
  2. VasudhaShukla , Manish Vashistha and SomNath Singh. EVALUATION OF ANTIOXIDANT PROFILE AND ACTIVITY OF AMALAKI (EMBLICA OFFICINALIS), SPIRULINA AND WHEAT GRASS Indian Journal of Clinical Biochemistry, 2009 / 24 (1) 70-75
  3. G. H. Naik, K. I. Priyadarsini, R. G. Bhagirathi, B. Mishra, K. P. Mishra, M. M. Banavalikar and Hari Mohan. In vitro antioxidant studies and free radical reactions of triphala, an ayurvedic formulation and its constituents Phytotherapy Research Volume 19, Issue 7, pages 582–586, July 2005
  4. Keita Saito, Masahiro Kohno, Fumihiko Yoshizaki, Yoshimi Niwano. Extensive Screening for Edible Herbal Extracts with Potent Scavenging Activity against Superoxide Anions Plant Foods for Human Nutrition June 2008, Volume 63, Issue 2, pp 65-70
  5. V. Damodara Reddy, P. Padmavathi, S. Gopi, M. Paramahamsa, and N. Ch. Varadacharyulu. Protective Effect of Emblicaofficinalis Against Alcohol-Induced Hepatic Injury by Ameliorating Oxidative Stress in Rats. Indian J Clin Biochem. Oct 2010; 25(4): 419–424.
  6. JureeCharoenteeraboon, ChatriNgamkitidechakul, NoppamasSoonthornchareonnon, KanjanaJaijoy, and SeewaboonSireeratawong Antioxidant activities of the standardized water extract from fruit of Phyllanthusemblica Linn.Songklanakarin J. Sci. Technol. 32 (6), 599-604, Nov. — Dec. 2010

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