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But how does the fruit compare to statin drugs?
Indian researchers are exploring a potential link between amla fruit (Phyllanthus emblica) and heart health. The greenish fruit, also known as Indian gooseberry, is believed to have substantial anti-inflammatory and fat-regulating properties that may benefit type 2 diabetics.
Researchers from the Nizam Institute of Medical Sciences in India are so convinced of amla’s cardiovascular potential that they pitted amla against a statin drug in a human trial. For 12 weeks, 80 type 2 diabetics were assigned to consume Capros amla extract (500 mg or 1000 mg), 10 mg of atorvastatin (known by the commercial name Lipitor), or placebo daily. Researchers monitored for changes in endothelial function (the ability of blood vessels to dilate and constrict, which is often impaired in type 2 diabetics) and markers of inflammation, including glutathione, C-reactive protein, and malondialdehyde.
Both amla and statin were associated with significant benefits to endothelial function and inflammation, compared to placebo. Improvements were considerably greater with the statin drug, but statins do come with widely reported risks of side effects.
Amla’s potential to manage inflammation and promote blood flow complements previous research on amla and cholesterol. And all of these issues can be major concerns for people with type 2 diabetes and other heart issues.
Natreon Inc. (New Brunswick, NJ) supplied its Capros amla fruit extract for this study.