Bergamot + Amalaki: Ayurvedic Wisdom for Heart + Blood Sugar Support

Traditionally, two citrus fruits, bergamot (Citrus bergamia) and amalaka/amla (Phyllanthus emblica), were commonly used to maintain health and longevity in Ayurveda. Today, we have science to explain why they have been so effective for thousands of years.  

In This Article

Bergamot + Amalaki Magic For Your Heart: Weight, Blood Sugar + Triglycerides 

Are you happy with your weight, blood sugar, and triglyceride levels? 

Triglyceride and blood sugar levels are two major signposts of health and longevity and, not surprisingly, they commonly trend together. One study concluded that attaining healthy triglyceride levels (but not cholesterol) helped decrease blood sugar levels and healthy blood sugars lowered triglycerides.1  

citrus bergamia bergamot

One contributing factor to both unhealthy triglyceride and blood sugar levels is body weight. In one study with 3,000 volunteers, decreasing weight by just 5-7% provided significant blood sugar support in 60% of volunteers.1 In another study, with 1,140 healthy but overweight volunteers, 34.2% had prediabetes and 13.6% had diabetes, suggesting once again that these factors may all potentially trend together: weight, blood sugar, and triglycerides.2 

While various diets have been employed for decades to support healthy weight, the number of people in a high BMI (body mass index) range has now soared to a new all-time high: 42% of Americans.3 Perhaps a more sustainable strategy, instead of chasing weight loss, would be to support healthier functioning by maintaining blood sugar and triglycerides within normal levels. 

The Citrus Weight Loss Diet Alternative 

Traditionally, two citrus fruits, bergamot (Citrus bergamia) and amalaka/amla (Phyllanthus emblica), were commonly used to maintain health and longevity in Ayurveda. Today, we have science to explain why they have been so effective for thousands of years.  

While today 80% of bergamot is produced in Calabria (southern Italy), bergamot is native to Southeast Asia and was used alongside amalaki as an integral part of Ayurvedic medicine.4  

bergamot alma plus

Bergamot Amla Plus combines the antioxidant activity of bergamot (Citrus bergamia) with the tonifying superfruit amla (Phyllanthus emblica). Bergamot is used traditionally in Italy to support cardiovascular health. Amla is revered in Ayurveda for its role in cardiovascular health, and this use has been validated in modern human clinical trials.  

Research suggests the lipid- and glucose-balancing flavonoids of bergamot and amla help maintain healthy cholesterol and triglyceride levels already within normal range and support healthy blood glucose metabolism.5 

Bergamot for Body Weight, Triglycerides, Blood Sugar + More 

LifeSpa Bergamot Amla Plus is a concentrated bergamot juice extract containing a unique combination of naturally occurring polyphenolic components that exhibit antioxidant activity. These protective flavonoids include neoeriocitrin, naringin, neohesperidin, melitidin, and brutieridin, each of which influences a slightly different molecular pathway. 

Cross section of Bergamot orange Jacopo Werther wikicommons

In a review of 20 human studies with 1,709 volunteers, bergamot juice extract at a dose of 150-1,000mg a day demonstrated a positive effect on body weight, triglycerides, and blood sugar.4 In addition, these studies demonstrate bergamot’s support for healthy hair, bones, skin, collagen, and cytokine inflammation response.4 

Inhaling the rich fragrance of bergamot juice or essential oil is traditional for mood support. A pilot study on 57 volunteers observed the effects of bergamot essential oil inhalation on mental health and wellbeing, as measured by the Positive and Negative Affect Scale. Fifteen minutes of bergamot essential oil exposure improved positive feelings 17% higher than the control group.6 

Imbalanced lipids are a well-established cardiovascular risk. Although statins can reduce LDLC by 50-60%, less than 20% of patients with high risk of CVD achieve LDL targets. Studies suggest bergamot may support the function of statins when they are needed.7 

In this meta-analysis, 442 studies on bergamot for cardiovascular health were reviewed. Based on data, 75% of studies demonstrated a positive effect on cholesterol, triglycerides, HDL, and LDLC levels. This meta-analysis concluded a dose-dependent and possibly synergistic effect exists when administering bergamot with statins. Promising findings suggest bergamot supplementation may be an alternative option for lipid management already within normal range.7  

The mechanisms proposed to be responsible for the beneficial cardioprotective effects of bergamot include maintenance of healthy lipid and blood glucose levels and support of normal resistance to oxidative stress.8,9 

Amalaki for Cholesterol, Blood Sugar, Blood Pressure + More 

lifespa-image-amalaki-berries-gooseberry-close-up-white-background

Amla, also known as amalaki or Indian gooseberry, is a bright yellow-green fruit from the Phyllanthus emblica tree. In Ayurvedic tradition, amla is considered a rasayana, a rejuvenator to achieve homeostasis and build vitality. Native to India, P. emblica also grows in tropical and subtropical regions throughout Asia and the Middle East. The polyphenol-rich berries are traditionally used in applications related to supporting the body’s natural defense system.5 

In a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study, 98 volunteers were given 500mg of an amalaki extract twice daily for two weeks. In a similar style as bergamot, amla extract demonstrates a positive effect on triglycerides, cholesterol, apo B, and blood sugar. In addition, the amalaki group saw healthy support of arterial function related to plaque accumulation.10 Other studies replicated these finding along with showing support for healthy blood pressure and HDL levels.11 

Phytochemical studies on amla indicate the primary biologically effective constituents in amla berries are gallic acid, ellagic acid, emblicanin A and B, phyllembein, quercetin, and ascorbic acid—all of which exhibit antioxidant activity.  

Under the hood, amalaki’s constituents balance pro-oxidant (generation of free radicals) and antioxidant (scavenging of free radicals) homeostasis, which has been suggested to be its mechanism for supporting general health. Although used historically for a wide variety of applications, amla is favorably regarded in traditional medicine and validated in modern scientific literature for its role in supporting endothelial function, the body’s response to oxidative stress, lipid and blood glucose modulation, and management of healthy hsCRP levels, all of which contribute to cardiovascular health maintenance.12-16 

How do you protect your heart, triglycerides, weight, and blood sugar? 

References

  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3191678/ 
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6000929/ 
  3. https://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMsa1909301#:~:text=Our%20projections%20show%20that%20the,with%20large%20variation%20across%20states. 
  4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6392855/
  5. https://store.lifespa.com/product/bergamot-amla-plus/
  6. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28337799/ 
  7. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31670973/
  8. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7319525/
  9. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5452232/
  10. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6341673/ 
  11. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3326920/
  12. Grover HS, Deswal H, Singh Y, et al. J Oral Res Rev. 2015;7:65-8. doi:10.4103/2249-4987.172498.
  13. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6203864/
  14. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28747010/
  15. Dasaroju S, Gottumukkala KM. Int J Pharm Sci Rev Res. 2014;24(2):150-159
  16. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4390209/
  17. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27320046/ 

3 thoughts on “Bergamot + Amalaki: Ayurvedic Wisdom for Heart + Blood Sugar Support”

    • Hello Ava and Life Spa staff,
      I want to report that Bergamot – also as in Earl Grey Tea – can give me Atrial Fibrillation. Maybe too much of a heart stimulant for me – I used to love Earl Grey tea (decaffinated) but now am too cautious to drink it any more.
      I do take Amla and that seems to agree with me.
      Best wishes, Sibylle.

      Reply

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