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Indian gooseberry or amla is used in all types of Ayurvedic medicines and it's known to benefit people with diabetes, hair loss and indigestion. Both the dried and fresh fruits of amla are used for medicinal purposes. In fact, all the parts of the tree including the fruit, flowers, seed, leaves, root and bark are used in herbal preparations. In spite of its many benefits, consuming amla in excess has several side effects.
Amla might not be safe for people having certain health conditions, such as people with low haemoglobin levels or people on any kind of anticoagulant medications, according to Ayurvedic practitioners.
Though studies do not report any kind of toxic negative impacts, there are certain mild, adverse reactions associated with the usage of amla.
Let's have a look at the side effects of amla.
1. Increases bleeding
2. Damages the liver
3. Causes hyperacidity
4. Can cause constipation
5. Impacts blood pressure levels
6. Can worsen cold
7. Can cause burning sensation while urinating
8. May cause allergic reactions
9. Skin might lose its moisture
1. Increases Bleeding
Amla is rich in vitamin C that can increase the elasticity of the blood vessels, thereby softening and dilating them which aids in improving circulation and lowering blood pressure. But, on the other side, if you have a bleeding disorder or if you are on anticoagulant medications, you should take extra caution while consuming amla and avoid having them in large amounts.
Research has found that amla could reduce platelet aggregation by 36 per cent which increases the risk of bleeding when had with other anticoagulant drugs like ibuprofen, heparin, and aspirin.
2. Damages the liver
Amla is an excellent source of antioxidants and its hepatoprotective activity is beneficial in curing liver problems. If you are consuming any ayurvedic formulation that uses amla as an ingredient, there are chances of liver problems due to the increased level of a liver enzyme called serum glutamic pyruvic transaminase (SGPT).
However, amla alone cannot give liver damaging effect but, amla with ginger, Tinospora cordifolia, and Indian frankincensemay cause worsening of the liver functions in people with liver disease.
3. Causes Hyperacidity
The vitamin C content in Indian gooseberry contributes to the acidic nature of the fruit. The fruit is often eaten on an empty stomach for detoxification but this could cause acidity and may upset your stomach in turn. This is another side effect of amla.
4. Can Cause Constipation
Amla or Indian gooseberry is rich in fibre that can help in treating diarrhoea by causing gastrointestinal motility to go down. However, if eaten in excess, amla bulks up your stool and hardens it. You need to increase the water intake by consuming amla juice or dried amla powder with water to prevent constipation.
5. Impacts Blood Pressure Levels
If a person is suffering from hypertension and renal disorders, they should avoid consuming amla in the form of pickles because of the presence of salt in the pickles. Eating salt increases the amount of sodium into the bloodstream which reduces the kidney's ability to remove water. This results in high blood pressure due to the extra fluid and too much pressure on the kidneys.
6. Could Worsen Cold
As amla is a natural coolant, consuming the fruit alone or intake of amla powder can worsen the symptoms of cold and further aggravate the condition. Amla can be eaten during cold only if you take it in the form of triphala or by mixing amla powder with honey. This will work as a cure for cold and cough.
7. Can Cause Burning Sensation While Urinating
The high vitamin C content in amla is surely beneficial for health but it has side effects too if eaten in excess. A person could experience burning sensation while urinating, cloudy urine and foul-smelling urine in case you consume large amounts of amla.
8. May Cause Allergic Reactions
If you are allergic to Indian gooseberry, you might experience certain health conditions like stomach cramps or pain, vomiting, nausea, redness and swelling around the mouth, itchy skin, headaches, dizziness, light-headedness and hives on the skin and face.
9. Skin Might Lose Its Moisture
Amla possesses diuretic properties that would deprive your skin of moisture. It is essential to keep drinking water after you consume amla to keep your body hydrated. As you consume amla you will start feeling dryness of the throat which means that you need to drink plenty of water.
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