Doctor's Note

Be sure to check out my other videos on amla, and don’t miss all my videos on cancer

For more context, check out my associated blog posts: Stool Size and Breast Cancer RiskAmla: Indian gooseberries vs. cancer, diabetes, and cholesterolTop 10 Most Popular Videos of the YearBreast Cancer & Alcohol: How Much Is Safe?Raspberries Reverse Precancerous Lesions; and Mushrooms and Immunity.

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  • Michael Greger M.D.

    Please feel free to post any ask-the-doctor type questions here in the comments section and I’d be happy to try to answer them. Be sure to check back for the other videos on amla and don’t miss all the videos on cancer. And there are 1,449 subjects covered in the rest of my videos–please feel free to explore them!

    • Dr.Greger, I respect your work very much, but I got to this link by clicking on a FB post that claimed these berries cure cancer and doctors don’t want people to know about it. I see that you clarified that the results of the study were most likely not attainable in the body (I think that’s the upshot of what you said) and that even in the study, their ability to reduce cancer cells was only 25%. Obviously these berries do not cure cancer, though at some point, a cancer treatment may be found that utilizes them in some way. Please be careful not to feed the anti-evidence based medicine inclinations of some of the people who frequent your site. Those people don’t look at clarifications. They take the slightest suggestion and run with it. People with cancer need to follow the advice of a competent physician, not the internet.

      • Huvs

        that’s not what I understood from this video. I understood that they did try it on human cancer cells and that their anti tumour abilities went even into the negative range which is tantamount to saying it cures cancer.

        • rebeccagavin

          Only in a very distant regard, It kills cancer cells in petrie dishes, That is a far cry from curing cancer in people, smh at scientific illiteracy,

      • karl

        Study the high success of the Hippocrates heath institute with Dr. Brian Clement. He’s the first place to go for any cancer situation. He has decades on record for High Success.

        • rebeccagavin

          What does that have to do with my comment? What does “decades on record for High Success” even mean? Have you heard of the scientific method? Has the guy published anything is a reputable journal?

          • Toxins

            I think that as you research this website more, you will find that there is a wealth of information indicating that a plant based diet can significantly affect cancer prevention and has potential for cancer reversal.

          • rebeccagavin

            Regardless of what I may find on this site, as of now, there is no plant based cure for cancer, the Indian Gooseberries mentioned simply killed cancer cells in a petri dish, not a human body, which is significant but not terribly significant. Implying, in any way, that such cures are out there now, if they cause one person to delay effective treatment for cancer, thus lowering their survival odds, is ethically wrong. Period.

          • Warren Lauzon

            That site is so full of Really Bad Medicine that it is pathetic, but it is probably pointless to argue with the true believers.

          • Toxins

            You can pee on a petri dish and it will result in cell death, that is not the point. Again, I encourage you to research more. A plant based diet is by far the best means in trying to prevent cancer. Nobody said 100% effective, but no doubt the best.

          • rebeccagavin

            My comment had to do with claims that this Indian Gooseberry could cure cancer and the fact that this article was used online to support one of those “Cancer cures THEY don’t want you to know about” memes. Nothing more. There actually is no evidence that plant based diets prevent cancer, as the kind of study necessary to show that has not been done. There may be studies showing that people who eat a plant based diet are less likely to develop cancer than another group but unless they have a way to control for all of the other variables involved, such a study is not meaningful. I have nothing against plant based diets. But of you think that nobody who eats a plant based diet ever gets cancer, you are fooling yourself. My comment was specific to one post that contained a claim about a cure for cancer. You are trying to make it about everything else that is discussed on this site. It’s not. Sorry.

          • Warren Lauzon

            You can pretty much bet that anytime you see the phrase “xxx don’t want you to know”, that it is a scam.

          • Toxins

            The amla study involved cell lines and nothing more, I don’t understand why this is such a wild audacious video. It was never claimed that in vivo amla can prevent cancer, but it is likely it can help ward it off, it is all about risk management.

            In addition, when blood from people on a plant based diet is dripped on cancer cell Ines, it kills it far more effectively then those who do not consume a plant based diet. There is an abundance of evidence to show that a plant based diet is the best means in preventing cancer. Please continue to research before you jump to conclusions. To say “there is no evidence” is false, and demonstrates you have not actually researched. No study can 100% ward off cancer, again, its about risk management.

          • rebeccagavin

            What earthly sense does it make to drip blood on cancer cells? What can that possibly mean, or prove? You say I need do more research and that there is tons of research out there that proves that plant based diets prevent cancer. Why don’t you start me out with a couple of links to peer reviewed studies published in creible journals?

          • Warren Lauzon

            Oh crap! Now you want freaking CREDIBLE!! How rude.

          • Elcy

            Very rude… carry out your research and tell us

          • Toxins

            Are you questioning what we can learn from this? I think the answer speaks for itself in your absurd question. The collective components of a plant based diet lead to cancer prevention, and there are countless studies showing this. All you have to do is look, as everything here on comes from the literature. I am not going to skim through each video and click the sources cited section and copy and paste, I think you are capable of doing that. Here is a starting point.

            And again, don’t misconstrue my statements. I have said countless times its about risk management, and a plant based diet by far is the most effective tool in reducing risk of cancer through many mechanisms which are all explained through the videos here.

          • rebeccagavin

            In other words no peer reviewed studies published in credible journals.

          • Toxins

            No, all it takes is a bit of effort on your part if you are truly interested in nutrition. Don’t get hung up on this amla one. Every video has lots of peer reviewed research cited and available.

          • rebeccagavin

            No, I am not questioning what we can learn from this. I asked for peer reviewed articles…the citations list for Gregor’s videos is not that…and it also implies that the individual who gave that link has not even looked at the original papers. Gregor may take his info from journal articles, but that does not say that the journals are good journals or that the articles really support the conclusion that Gregor makes about them. Furthermore, too many people on this site do not appear to understand the difference between in vitro and in vivo research and even if Gregor cautions them, they go out and talk about how this or that cures cancer.

          • Rami Najjar

            Rehashing this 10 months later? Is JAMA not a good journal? Again, all it takes is some mild investigation on your part.

          • Judy

            The references provided for each video are peer reviewed journals, e.g European Journal of Cancer Prevention in this instance.

          • rebeccagavin

            Well, they need footnotes delineating what points in the video those references theoretically support. Most people, including me, are not going to watch a video and then try to guess what in the citations refers to what.

          • gr

            Ok that’s fine and dandy. Most people get cancer and die. The question fundamentally comes down to do you want to get cancer because it was your fault or your genetics? The meat consumption is decreasing along with smoking so don’t tell me people aren’t watching.

          • mjs_28s

            ” Why don’t you start me out with a couple of links to peer reviewed studies published in creible journals?”

            Every video on this website is based on peer reviewed studies, white papers, journal pieces, etc.

            If you actually would watch some of them, without inserting what you think the meaning is beyond what Dr. Greger reports about the studies conclusions, you might understand that you are a bit off base.

            Dr. Greger has read thousands of the exact types of sources that you want and all the videos are based on said sources with pages from studies right in the videos. Are you blind or something.

            That aside, I have never gotten the impression that I could cure anything from his videos. I think you are projecting fluff medicine that you clearly disagree with, as would many of us here, onto these videos.

          • rebeccagavin

            Peer reviewed as in published in reputable journals? Are you sure about that?

          • mjs_28s


            Clearly you refuse to watch any of the videos and you watched this one with your eyes shut.

            This video shows, ON SCREEN (as do all his videos) the studies that he is talking about during each part of the videos.

            European Journal of Cancer Prevention, 2011 Vol 20 No. 3
            Journal of Ethnopharmacology 75 (2001) 65-69
            Phytotheropy Research, Phytother. Res 24:1405-1413 (2000)

            Use Google for crying out loud and read the papers in their entirety and then ask Dr Greger your questions if you have problems with what is in the reports that he talks about. Or, perhaps you can go straight to the authors of each of the papers, journal pieces, studies, etc.

            It’s like you want to argue, ignore people here trying to answer to, ignore the thing called the internet, ignore that his videos have multiple sources displayed on the screen with the exact information that you would need to research more yourself. The title of the study, report, journal piece along with the authors, publisher, date, page numbers, volume, etc.


          • Toxins

            Some people like to argue needlessly when the answer is readily available, because they like arguing.. Thanks for posting

          • congrats on slaying rebecca, the trolllllll!!! one of those give me science!, we give her science, and she shrieks, not good enough for me!!! give me a better science!!! btw, rebecca, dr. gregor never purported any sort of one stop cancer cure all in amla… that was your ill-informed facebook friend anyways.

          • rebeccagavin

            No science has been given…it’s all a reference to the references Greger gives with his videos…it’s not like anyone here has read the papers and compared the conclusion Greger makes with the conclusions researchers make. Greger is an interpreter of research. He does no research himself. All you have to do is read the comments here, and all the people who are running out to buy amla powder to see the effect his videos have on the gullible.

          • syed
          • rebeccagavin

            Are you kidding? You send me to Michael Gregor’s site, to a video, when I asked for peer reviewed articles in reputable journals? Seriously?

          • michael

            “There is no evidence that plant based diet prevent cancer”? Im sorry but there is, a lot. And there is even more of them that link animal food consumption with diseases, again, a lot (meat and dairy). Plant based diet is not THE cure. People could get cancer in many ways. Just live healthier and put chances on your side. Plant based is the way I think.

          • Dee Me

            I hope you have heard of Dr Ornish who was able to reverse Prostrate Cancer with a near vegan diet and this study is readily available for you to look up and his comment was that if it could work for prostrate cancer, it could also work for breast cancer. In any case, many people including me will rather go for natural treatment like amla, Curcumin, rigvir etc. than subject ourselves to toxic and ineffective chemos and radiation. Readers may want to watch the Truth About Cancer which shows that cancer is curable.

          • rebeccagavin

            Has Ornish done scientifically sound research on this and published in a credible journal? If so, I would be grateful for a link.

          • Qiqui

            I have to agree with you. I’ve tried so many supplements, tinctures, whatever that kill cancer in a petri dish. I’ve consulted with accomplished Nauropathic Doctors across the country and they have helped me, however, many things I have tried have not worked for me. And I’m a believer that they should. I’m on my 4th round of chemo and I’ve had 2 extensive surgeries. I went to a clinic in Germany but I’m still going to try more. Chemo is only buying time and thanks to the super foods and organic foods, etc I’m able to keep on.

          • pgyx

            Agree that in vitro studies are merely a start, and in general often lead down a dead end path rather than a meaningful cure. We can say the same for studies that use animal models. Dr. William Li did an intriguing TED talk ( about anti-angiogenesis factors in some plant foods which offer promise for plant-based dietary cancer prevention. By prevention, I mean reversal before the cancer clinically presents in a manner sufficient for diagnosis.

          • Pedro Palamo

            No plant based diet for curing cancer? Really? I must have died and reincarnated I guess…You must work for a farmecutical don’t you doc? Get your facts straight

          • rebeccagavin

            As a matter of fact, there is no plant based cure for cancer. What plant do you think there is evidence that it cures cancer. This should be rich.

          • michael

            Well plant based has proven to reverse heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure , cholesterol, I guess that’s a start. You can look at Dr. Esselstyn, McDougall, Neil Barnard, Cambell etc. And of course the actual site is a massive source of scientific vulgarisation. I admit, I cannot judge the weight of every source but i do read them. Its seems well established.

          • BJW

            Michael dont waste any more of your time with Ms. Rebecca. She is obviously part of the Caner Industry. In the business of profit for suffering. She is obviously not willing to accept/support anything that will help prevent or decrease the likelihood developing cancer because it will also decrease her income and put her in the unemployment line. Illness especially cancer is now a business. People like Ms. Rebecca are getting paid trillions of dollars annually to promote profit-oriented treatment instead of health-oriented prevention/cure. Who cares what she thinks. Continue to do your work and keep your head to the sky. Dont let the little people tear you down.

          • Dee Me

            In what way does chemo and radiation and surgery increase survival odds and how about ones quality of life after such barbaric treatments? I will rather eat vegan and use superfoods like Amla, turmeric/Curcumin, broccoli/Sulphoraphane etc. and other natural means to deal with any cancer. And I have the work of Dr. Ornish as scientific proof that it works.

          • rebeccagavin

            That is so well documented as to make your very question a Joke. Nothing wrong with eati g vegan. But it won’t keep you from getting cancer, and it won’t cure you if you do. Ask Steve Jobs about alt med for cancer. Oh wait, you can’t. He’s dead because he waited too long to access science based medicine even though he had millions to spend on any plant based or “natural” “cure” on offer.

          • Caravelle

            Please have a look at this from youtube so you’ll know about Steve Jobs –, cancer is an enormously complex issue.

          • Thea

            Caravelle: I’ve seen that lecture a couple of times. It’s *really* great! Thanks for supplying the link for people.

          • rebeccagavin

            Oh brother.

          • Warren Lauzon

            You really need to check other sources than what is on his website, selling his services. These are some of his “cures” “Yes, indeed, there it is: enemas, “infrared saunas,” and all manner of other quack treatments. But what are “implants”? Oh, you naive and silly person! Wheatgrass “implants” are, in actuality, wheatgrass juice enemas”.

          • Toxins

            Warren, I am sorry you have an issue with scientific studies, because that is the primary function of this site. The latest evidence is gathered and it is interpreted through the videos. If you want details, you can see the sources sited section. I am not interested in viewing your shared blogs.

          • Warren Lauzon

            I have no issue with actual scientific studies. What I have issues with is claims that are NOT backed with any science, and the “gooseberry cures cancer” is one of those.

          • Toxins

            Dr. Greger never said amla cured cancer, he showed studies with cell lines and its effect on cancer cells, that was all. Every claim on this website is backed with scientific evidence.

          • eric

            I have cancer and originally started the gerson style diet or Dr. Lorraine day diet and I went from bed ridden to jogging 4 miles a day and weight training within 3 weeks. Then my tumors reduced by 3 quarters. From a golf ball size tumor on my shoulder to a marble. I went back to eating dairy and meat and the you guest it. back in bed. I eventually developed major blood sugar problems and then went to more of a hippocrates diet and the wheat grass is amazing at fighting cancer. Go to the real truth about Or watch raw for 30. You can watch raw for 30 for free on youtube. Fighting cancer is all about oxygen and raw foods and their juices are loaded with hormones, phytonutrients, oxygen which all fight cancer and build your immune system. It’s all about the inner terrain. Clean it up and cancer cannot live in a high oxygen environment.

        • Warren Lauzon

          LOL – what success? You might want to read this “.. I went to the source, the Hippocrates Health Institute website. It didn’t take long for me to figure out that its programs were a veritable cornucopia of nearly every quackery on the planet..”. That is from a real doctor board certified in cancer treatment.

      • Warren Lauzon

        You can be 99% sure that any ad or claim starts out with “they don’t want to you to know” is 100% bullshit.

      • ssohara

        If something kills cancer cells in a petri dish obviously there are some anti-cancer properties, but you are right that that doesn’t necessarily translate to killing cancer in the body. However, I’ve done a lot of reading on amla and one thing it does is strengthen the immune system. But I don’t have time to look all the articles up, you will need to google. There are many things that will kill cancer in a lab with great effectiveness, but be less effective when taken orally by a patient, for a variety of reasons. That doesn’t mean, however, that something like amla is not beneficial. The problem is quantifying how beneficial when taken orally vs. in the lab. My personal POV, given that the side effects of things like amla, taken in reasonable doses, are so minimal, and the potential benefits are quite good… I take a teaspoon a day every day. :)

        • rebeccagavin

          Which is exactly what is wrong with this site.

          • ssohara

            I am new to the site, in fact, the video on amla was the first I saw on this site. However, I don’t know that there is anything wrong with the site. I chose to view the video and use it as just another data point not as firm medical advice. There were several journals cited in the video, so that gave me some more resources to go check. And as far as the double blind studies, they cost money and pharma companies are not going to spend the money for a berry… This is one reason that many alternative treatments do not have the studies. Which can be frustrating, because without double blind studies it is really hard to quantify how effective something is. That doesn’t mean, however, that alternatives are not worth trying. For example, echinacea. I have not been able to find double blind studies about it, but I have noticed that when I start drinking echinacea tea when I’m feeling a cold coming, I don’t get sick. Maybe it’s just the placebo effect, or maybe it’s for real, but either way it does work for me. But without a proper double blind study…

            At any rate, one interesting fact based on statistical examination of data – overall cancer rates are much lower in India than in western countries. U.S. men get 23 times more prostate cancer than men in India. Americans get between 8 and 14 times the rate of melanoma, 10 to 11 times more colorectal cancer, 9 times more endometrial cancer, 7 to 17 times more lung cancer, 7 to 8 times more bladder cancer, 5 times more breast cancer, and 9 to 12 times more kidney cancer. Some of this might be due to bad data collection in India, but that wouldn’t account for such a huge discrepancy. However, India is a very polluted in industrial areas and poverty rates are high, plus Indians are more likely to smoke and less likely to have access to safety equipment when working with dangerous chemicals, etc. So, all things considered, one would think cancer rates would be higher or comparable in India.

            Why are cancer rates lower in India? It might have to do with the traditional Indian diet, which includes things like amla (many Indians take it in a daily supplement called chawanprash), turmeric, ginger, garlic (all heavily used in Indian diets) and so on. It might be genetic. It might be due to a more plant based diet. It is intriguing though, and I would love to see more double blind studies done!

          • gr

            What do you mean?

    • Amol

      Hellow doctor my name is amol from india my mother suffering from cancer of 4th stage Doctor said there is only option is chemo but even after chemo she will live for 6mounths now we are going for soursoup leavea tree and powder as well and amla powder please suggest me the proper way

  • Elvin

    Sound quality has been bad past few days.

  • Thea

    I wanna git me sum! :-)

    It seems like these berries would be great to put on my morning oatmeal rather than those raisins (“wonderbread of the fruits”-ha! I’ll never forget that) But where to get them? I tried a quick search on Amazon where I found plenty of Alma pills, powders and beauty products, but no actual berries.

    I did find something that proposed to be an Alma juice blend, but they didn’t list the ingredients and it wasn’t organic.

    I’d be curious to hear from people who have tried these berries. What do they taste like? Are they bitter?

    • BPCveg

      The amla berry is widely consumed throughout India. I think you should be able to get them from most Indian grocery stores and find recipes online.

      • Thea

        re: location of amla berry.
        Thanks. I live in a small enough city that we don’t have an Indian grocery store. I’ll look for one the next time I travel to a bigger city.

        • Joanne

 Dried berries.

    • I use a dried amla powder. There’s no other way to describe the taste other than horrid.  Even putting it in a large smoothie couldn’t hide the bitter, vile taste. Regardless, I mix a teaspoon into a half cup of hot water and gulp it down every morning.  I close my eyes and think fond thoughts of my beloved mom forcing me to take my cod liver oil as a small child. I’ve been taking it for about 3 months now and the most noticeable effect is the regrowth of hair in a previously bald spot in my scalp. Cause and effect? I dunno. But I plan to keep taking it.

      • John at 65

        Hair – I bought a bottle of Solaray Amla 500mg and have been taking one
        pill each morning. I have a bald spot on the back of my head 3 inches in
        diameter and it was completely bald. This bald spot has been increasing
        in size over a period of 20 years. After 45 days of taking the Amla I
        notice that hair is growing back there. I was shocked to see the hair
        coming back. I have also changed my diet to Vegan for the past 4 months.
        originally bought the Amla for lowering my blood sugar. With the Vegan
        Diet, Amla, and exercising I have been able to stop using Glipizide for
        my diabetes. A1C was 9.8 and is now 5.3 in just 3 months. My doctor was
        impressed. And
        that was without the Amla. I still take 1,000 mg of Metformin twice a
        day. I listen to my doctor and hope to reduce other medications for
        Cholesterol and high Blood Pressure.

      • Ellen Marsh

        I tried dried amla for the first time yesterday. Yes, it’s quite sour… but so is biting into a lemon. Today I added it to a tea of sorts, hot water with lemon juice, 1/4 tsp. amla and stevia. Tasted much better!

      • gr

        Interesting you say that because I’ve been growing hair in a previous bald spot as well. I’m not sure what the mechanism are behind it all but if it continues i might just grow my hair out. The only thing I added was amla powder everyday and oatmeal with cinnamon every so often (3ish times a week)

    • Kate

       The best way my husband and I have been using them is by buying them from the freezer section of the Indian grocery store. The powder is generally not good to add to smoothies because it usually contains a significant amount of salt. We buy 12 oz bags of the whole frozen berries for $1.50 each.

      They are fairly large berries (about the size of a plum) and contain a very stubborn pit. I don’t typically thaw and then refreeze things, but I found thawing out the berries and then slicing around the pit and peeling off the slices from the pit is the easiest way to conveniently manage them. I do a whole bag at once, then freeze the rest of the slices to add to my smoothies later. A few slices go a long way. They have a sour taste and we discovered if you eat one by itself, and then drink water afterwards, the water tastes slightly sweet. (:

      Back to smoothies…they do mix well, and can be masked by other fruits. They add a thicker pulpy consistency, but I don’t find it unpleasant, and I’m not typically a huge pulp fan.

      All and all, they are very cheap, and a great addition to your smoothies. Check out the freezer section of your Indian grocery next time you are there! (:

    • mahesh

      its got a astrigent, bitter & sour taste.but the best of all is, its even sweet .you can feel the sweetness in your mouth after eating this fruit. i had severe acidity (i could actually feel the acid leaking in my stomach : this was a side effect of an antibiotic prescribed when i was suffering from flu) even after a meal had digested.i tried allopathy, but it did not help.i googled for some ayurvedic medicine & i found amla which is very reasonable and available everywhere in india. i started taking amla before every meal, it not only cured me of my acidity in two days but the continued usage has helped me regulate my bowels & i am feeling more youthful than before.i had ligament pains in my knees & its dissapeared. amla is helpful in treating diabetes, bloodpressure, arthritis, cholesterol, & many more benefits.

      • Toxins

        How do you eat your amla? I have found it frozen at Indian stores but I am not sure what to do with it and how to prepare it so that it tastes enjoyable.

        • Lawrence

          Hi Toxin, I put 2 in my daily smoothie. Even then because it is a tough berry, I need to chew on it sometimes. So, if you have a better blender than mine you may not have to chew at all but go through the actions in order to trigger saliva generation.

      • Shashi

        Amla, is arguably the most important medicinal plant in the Indian traditional system of medicine, the Ayurveda.for more than 5000 years. Like Gold is to metals Amla is to Indian Herbs the most encouraging data on the fruit has to do with the
        discovery that two of its constituents—corilagin and Dgg-16—prevent the adherence of low-density lipoprotein (LDL, or “bad”) cholesterol and monocytes to the insides of blood vessels in an animal model. This means that amla actually
        decreases the likelihood of plaque building up in the arteries, a process that can cause high blood pressure, circulation problems and many forms of heart disease

        Capacity to repair wounds was studied on Swiss Albino mice the wound healing of Amla extract was greater than Betaine group in the wound created by excisions method *R.C. Agrwal
        Now regarding Aloevera, no Indian system of healing have ever recommended using whole leaf It always recommended using the purified Gell for health benifits Aloe is a super herb. It was so done by the western greedy people after which the greedy Indians also followed

    • Ben

      I buy them in the frozen section of the Indian grocery. Let them thaw a little, then you can cut around the very hard seed, and put it in a smoothie sweetened with something like dates and it tastes fine that way. It tastes like you have added something like a pear to your smoothie. But you cannot eat them alone, or at least I cannot, they are bitter, somewhat spicy and not sweet at all. And never just throw the whole berry in a blender, the very hard seed must be removed.

      • Thea

        Thanks Ben!

    • JP

      Amla tastes a bit sour & tart. Most indian grocery stores now sell Amla in the frozen section. I buy the frozen fruit along with organic amla powder from:

      Banyan Botanicals
      or Himalayan Institute

      • Thea

        JP: Thanks for your post. Since I posted originally 3 years ago, I have had a fair amount of exposure to amla. That’s interesting that you are eating the frozen fruit. The only way I can stomach it is if I hide the powder well (very small amounts in stronger tasting food) well.

        Thanks for the link. I think lots of people look for good sources. Some people have have good success with Mountain Rose Herbs, but it is always nice for alternatives. :-)

  • BPCveg

    Based on the graph shown, the normal cell growth rate slowed down by more than just “a bit” … the change was by 50%!

    Is that an expected finding for a berry?

    What side effects may exist? Could this reduce capacity to repair wounds or effect skin / blood cell turnover rate?

    Please comment.

    • Thea

      BPCveg: great question. I hope someone more knowledgeable than I also responds. I just wanted to put in 2 cents.

      You raised some points I hadn’t thought of re: wound repair. However, my initial reaction was that slowing normal cell growth would be great. Since it is my understanding that every time a cell divides, the end caps get smaller, and at some point, they can’t divide any more because of that. Thus, the less that your cells divide, the longer you would live.

      I don’t know if that is true or not. I just think it is interesting that I had the opposite reaction that you did in seeing a lowering of 50% normal cell growth. It looked good to me.

      I will be very interested to hear from someone who understands the big picture better.

      • BPCveg

        Thea, thanks for your comment.

        You make a good point about slowing aging by affecting telomere length.

        Though I’m not sure if lowering normal cell growth is always beneficial. During chemotherapy, for example, rapidly growing cells are killed off, leading to severe side effects including depression of the immune system, fatigue, tendency to bleed easily, gastrointestinal problems and hair loss.

        I’m not claiming that the slowed growth of cells due to amla is analogous to chemotherapy. I just am looking for a fair evaluation of any potential side effects.

        • Thea

          BPCveg: Thanks for supplying the ‘telomere’ word.

          Also, thanks for expanding your thoughts. Your thoughts also make perfect sense to me. I hope you get your “fair evaluation”. I want to hear it too.

    • Michael Greger M.D.

      Note that the x-axis on that graph is logarithmic–we may not be able to attain levels at the far right hand of the graph physiologically. At the point at which the amla appears to start killing off the cells there appears to just be about a 25% drop in normal cell growth rate. You ask a great question, though. What effect might that have? Stay tuned for more videos coming up over the ensuing weeks for more on amla!

    • jazzfeed

      A corollary question: Does amla-attenuated cell growth (normal cells) return to normal rates after discontinuing the amla?

  • johnnyamish

    I tried the frozen gooseberries and I must say they don’t “jive” with my palate. They took my logarithmic function and made it very untranscendetal — it tastes like poop (math joke). Anyway to make these things tastier?!??


    • Thea

      johnnyamish: Thanks for your taste report.

      On the topic of making them tastier. I’m not sure if you noticed, but this video on amla is just one video in a series. In a later video, Dr. Greger talks about putting some amla powder in a smoothie. It’s my guess that most people will need to do something like that to mask the taste.

      I haven’t been able to try amla myself yet, but my parents (who live in a bigger city and have an Indian store) got some frozen amla. They thawed out one of the fruits. According to my parents, it wasn’t just tart, but also really bitter. Unpalatable to them.

      We’ve talked about getting some amla powder and putting in on oatmeal. Would amla powder in oatmeal ruin breakfast or just add nutrition with no taste change or an exautic pleasant taste? I’m hoping for the latter. Let us know if you find something that works.

      Also, I’ll mention that someone else posted that Indians often prepare the berries cooked with chili(?-something spicy if I remember correctly) and salt. So, it may help to think of the food as less of a fruit and more like a strong veggie??? Just a thought.

      • Sebastian Tristan

        I just bought Amla powder and it tastes horrible. I’m currently looking for ways to ingest it.

        • Thea

          Sebastian: Since I had posted the post you responded you, I too have purchased the amla powder and found it literally made me gag. Some people are definitely more sensitive to the taste than other people as I have had friends put the amla in their smoothies and didn’t really notice the taste. (Of course the devil is in the details – how much did they put in???)

          I have found that as long as I don’t put too much powder into my oatmeal, the oatmeal tastes just fine. Especially when I make my chocolate oatmeal that has a lot of flavors in it. So, I recommend experimenting with amounts. Then you will have to see if the amount you can tolerate is a therapeutic amount.

          In the end, I mostly gave up on the amla. Instead I started playing with a berry powder that I got on line that has some amla in it along with a LOT of other high-powered berries. While the berry powder tastes a lot better, it is extremely expensive. The product would not be for everyone. Plus, since this product has not specifically been tested, I don’t know how much of an effect it would have on health.

          Just some thoughts for you. Good luck with your amla consuming! I hope it doesn’t go to waste.

          • Sebastian Tristan

            Amla powder is literally the most disgusting thing I have ever tried. To give you an example, after drinking it, I always drink some water to wash the taste. Well, after the Amla, my taste buds find this pure water sweet! Anyhow, I found a way to take it. I mix half a teaspoon of Amla twice a day (so in total a teaspoon) in water and quickly drink it. From the videos the Doc poster, a teaspoon should give enough health benefits. I also tried adding erythritol to the water, but it somehow made it yuckier. As a side note, my dermatitis/rosacea has improved dramatically. I’m not sure if it’s the Amla, the fact that this week I’m avoiding all spices or if it’s the hempseed in my beans or the hempseed flour in my oatmeal.

      • Amla gooseberries taste like sour grapes!

        • Thea

          Rivka: After the post above, I did eventually buy some powdered amla and “got” to taste it. I think “sour grapes” is being generous. :-)

          But it really seems like taste buds differ quite a bit regarding amla. I’ve spoken to some people who really don’t mind it. Where as I gagged the first time I tried it. Lately I have been putting some into my savory morning oatmeal. I don’t taste it at all in there. That’s the key to getting me to consume the stuff – hide it.

          • dragon

            The after taste of the bitterness of amla, is what Chinese people refer to as the 5th taste – a subtle sweetness that follows the bitter taste. Such sweet-ish after taste is similar to sucking a licorice bark. So, perhaps you can try focus on appreciating the after taste instead? It is indeed an acquired taste.

            Anyhow. If you can find Chinese herbal shop in your neighborhood i stead of Indian grocery shop, they should have the dried Indian gooseberries, smaller (size of a cherry when fresh) than their genuine Indian cousin but exactly the same thing. They are called 油甘子。 i hope they possess the same phytonutritional values as the Indian version.

          • Thea

            dragon: re: ” perhaps you can try focus on appreciating the after taste instead?” That’s a thought. I’m pretty sensitive to bitter tastes. But I’m also a believer in changing one’s taste buds when it is in our best interests to do so.

            re: “I hope they possess the same phytonutritional values as the Indian version.”
            Unless it is biologically the same plant, perhaps just harvested earlier to make it smaller, then I wouldn’t expect it to be the same phytonutritional values. But maybe just as good???

            Thanks for sharing.

  • Racham

    I tried putting amla powder in soup and it made the soup sour. I purchased size-00 empty gel capsule and filled them with the amla powder. I take 5 of these a day and it equals 1 tsp.

    • Toxins

      Whoah! What an incredible idea! I didn’t even know one could this. Thanks for the input!

  • Bman

    I’m new to Dr. Greger and this site, but I’ve practice holistic health methods for years. Thank you Michael for a robust and fascinating read and learning environment. Question: I would like very much to purchase dried Alma powder from a reputable, organically grown source. Can anyone provide web site or recommendations of any sort? Again many thanks to all who contribute.

    • Bman13

      I found a distributor. You can order if from: Florida Herb House. Shipped it right to my door.

  • kittyboo

    organic india …. i got a one lb bag for like 15.00 in local indian spice store.

  • Carol

    My friend has had 1 kidney removed in July (cancer) and now faces the spread of cancer in her lungs, liver. (not sure of anything else).  She was given 2 choices….2 take a pill at home (with very little % of success, or going in the hospital for 4 wks of chemo, home 2 and back for 4 more.  She is devastated and does not know what to do. Is this something (gooseberries) that you think would be beneficial to try…or other recommendations (she is being treated in Morgantown, WV.  are there other facilities she can contact to help, (opinions, educate on treatments, etc)  ANY info would be GREATLY appreciated. thanks….C

    • Bruce

      Carol if I were facing the challenges your
      friend is facing I would immediately contact the Burzynski Clinic in Houston
      Texas If you want some background view the documentary BURZYNSKI
      which is the story of Stanislaw Rajmund Burzynski a physician and biochemist and his
      “controversial” treatment for cancer. Also, order
      this book titled I Have Cancer: What Should I Do?: Your
      Orthomolecular Guide for Cancer Management and read up on the mega dosage interveinous Vitamin C therapy among other cancer treatments. I wish your friend a healthy outcome.

    • Shashi

      Dear Carol,
      when my mother was 70 years she had breast Cancer, after removing her breast we were not in a postilion to do chemo because of her health condition. Since I am a Oral Cancer survivor with DNA Meditation and Amla pure juice 150 ml 3times daily.I asked her to follow the same. She came out of cancer and Kidney Problem and lived a healthy life for another 12 years. She died of an accident

      Now coming back to your friend, ask her to learn DNA Meditation and go for Pure Amla juice there is enough research on the Cytoxin ability of Amla ti cure Cancer without side effects If she cannot find a place to learn DNA Meditation ask to learn any type of Meditation from a good teacher- NO BOOKS
      Cancer is nothing but mutation of DNA. To day science says your DNA can hear and reprogram when your brain wave is at Alpa (14 to 8 cycles per second ) After !5 days of class, in a meditative level say loud enough for your hears to hear ” I am a Spirtiual.Magnetic and a Biological Being. I can therefore reprogram my Own DNA’s and use the facilities around Me like the Science, the New Biology, the New Chemistry, the New spiritual Knowledge and the New text Books just now being written on energy to change and Heal my self with my own POWERFUL INTENT

      I dont know the health status of your friend Now
      Best Wishes

      • Rajanna

        Hello Shashi, I am from India. Just last month my sister aged 55 years diagnosed for stage-4 esophageal cancer & Doctors refused to give any treatment may be due to her health condition is very bad. Now she is at home only without any treatment. As she could not swallow food due to damage in esophagus we could get installed a tube in her throat & now she can eat solid foods also. But, she is getting pain due to that tube also & the condition becoming worse day by day. Just yesterday we have started that soursop juice a natural juice. Can you please tell me whether we can go for this Amla juice? if so how much juice we should give & how many times etc etc.
        Please help me if you can by advicing to save my sister.

        Rajanna K V

  • Diamond

    can you eat gooseberries only or in a smoothies will there be any side effects because I have frozen gooseberries in my refrigerator.

  • Worried

    Hi…at my last blood sugar check (Feb. 2013), my a1C level was 6.6, down from 6.8 (Nov. 2012) after I lost 13 pounds. However, I gained back nearly 7 pounds and cannot seem to lose the weight. (I am still in the midst of a rather stressful situation from an accident my husband had last summer which left him brain injured. He has made great strides, but is still not completely himself yet. The doctor said stress can increase blood sugar.) I do not want to go on drugs because the side effects sound really scary, and was wondering if amla (I bought some frozen fruit today, the 12th, and ate 2 berries) might help me. I see my doctor for my annual check-up on the 26th of this month. Thanks for any help and keep up the great work and service you are providing the public! You are a God-send, Dr. Greger! ♥

  • Ajay Mistry

    Hi Doctor,I am an indian myself living in US.My 81 yrs old mother has been diagnosed with ovarian cancer.she is also diabetic and have high blood pressure.Acccording to hospital doctors her cancer is in stage 4.Her belly became big as fluid keep accumalting again and again.Docs already drain her fluid 4 times.She doesn’t feel to eat because of this problem and have a very poor appetite.My question is Can we try to give her amla extract capsules.Will it show some effect on her?if so how many times and how much we should give her?How would we know if its working on her and stoping cancer growth?Please let me know asap.Thank you very much.

  • Bear

    A few years back I had a double hernia surgery from an incisional hernia and an umbilical hernia from childhood. I suppose the hernia is “taken care of” but I now have a small would in my belly button. It is a small hole that oozes and I use rubbing alcohol on it to keep clean. The doctor was simply cauterizing it for quite sometime and appeared to be closing up but not completely. Surgery was other option to fix it but I haven’t gone back since in hopes of finding a way to heal myself through nutrition. You briefly mention wound healing in reference to this video on Indian gooseberries. Would incorporating this into my diet actually be beneficial in helping to heal??

  • Steve

    Hi, I’ve been using the amla powder for the past 3 months. My understanding is that to make the powder they just dry the berries in the sun and then grind them up. I’m not aware of any negative side effects and was not sure of a dosage but I have been putting a heaping tablespoon of it in my morning oatmeal. With the heaping part it is probably closer to two tablespoons. Relative to the amounts you have been discussing this is much higher levels. I notice the flavor, but even at that high level I don’t find it objectionable. My morning oatmeal mix is my own concoction that I do ahead in large batches in the slow cooker over night. My current recipe is 2 cups steel cut oats, 1 cup pot barley, 1 cup toasted wheat germ, about 3/4 cups of dried cranberries, about 3/4 cup of golden raisins, I then add a healthy blop (very precise measurement you can see :) ) of blackstrap molasses. When after I heat up my oatmeal I add 2 1/2 tablespoons of ground flaxseed, then the heaping tablespoon of amla powder (I get it at an Indian grocery store and the large bag is only $1.00 and usually lasts me a couple of weeks.). I then add about 1/4 – 1/2 cup of hemp seeds and top it off with vanilla flavored soy milk. There is enough sweetness to counteract most of the bitterness of the amla and I love it and look forward to it every morning. I have not noticed any negative effects or any real positive ones other than my wife and mother-in-law keep saying my skin looks amazing.
    I add it for the antioxidants, the diabetes effects (I’m type 2 diabetic and my last a1c was down to 5.0 and my physician was ecstatic. I also have been on blood pressure meds for years and I am totally off those with current blood pressure at 118/72 (I have been vegan for past 6 months and have lost 100 lbs in past year so I can’t attribute everything to amla by any stretch, but it does not seem to hurt.). I am also taking it as a way to try and help prevent cancers or slow them down, but purely as a preventive measure. I also liked the described cholesterol effects but since going vegan I don’t have much concern about that, but any positive is good)
    If anyone has any information on medicinal dosage levels I would like to know. If anyone knows of any problems with amla consumption I would also be interested in knowing. There were a number of complaints about taste posted and questions on how to mask the flavor. The above works great for me at even a high dose. You have to make sure you mix it well or you get a lump of amla powder on the spoon sometimes.:)

    • Thea

      Steve: Thanks for sharing your recipe and story. It sounds like you are doing so well. Congrats on taking your health into your own hands and fixing things!

    • Steve

      I had a chance to speak to Dr. Gregor at Vegetarian Summerfest in Johnstown, PA about the amount of amla I was taking every day. He said it seemed like a lot. (What he actually said was “My god man, have you no taste buds!? You must be taking more amla than anyone on the Planet!”) :) He said it might be good for me and I may be ahead of the research but that there is no evidence or studies at that level currently. He said the amla powder was so pharmacologically active and there was no data for higher levels so he recommended cutting back to one teaspoon of the amla powder a day as was used in one of the studies he quoted. Basically go with the best data to date and not try to extrapolate further until more data becomes available.
      Seemed like a good well reasoned response so I have cut back to the single teaspoon a day even though I had not noticed any problems at the higher level
      Thanks Dr. Gregor.

    • Charzie

      Congrats Steve on your hard won successes! I can relate, your story sounds similar to my own, I just wish I hadn’t waited for a crisis to implement the smart changes. Better late than never I guess? Anyway, gotta get me some of that amla, it sounds like one of those things you dare each other to taste as kids! LOL!

      • BT

        That’s funny Charzie…I remember daring each other to taste stuff like hot sauce or baking chocolate…yuk. I add a bit of date sugar to my Amla laced smoothies and it adds a mild sweetness or at least counteracts the extreme tartness of Amla. It is a pure unrefined natural sweeter. Actually all it is is dried and ground dates. Its low calorie (1 tsp = 10 calories), however it can be a bit expensive. Also, you can make your own with a dehydrator.

        • Charzie

          LOL, ah what child could resist the lure of baking chocolate! Yuk! I’m with ya on the dates too, I use them a lot in my smoothies but I usually just use the pitted dates because they are cheaper. I’m on a fixed income so I’m the queen of cheap! I grow my own sprouts, have a little garden, bake my own bread, make my own plant milks and vegan yogurts and cheese, fermented veggies and whatever else I can to cut costs. I live in FL so my next venture is to cobble together a solar dehydrator I saw on Mother Earth News made out of cardboard! LOL! Even I can afford that! Where there’s a will there’s a way!

          • Thea

            Charzie: You are an inspiration! Thanks for your post.

  • Steve

    forgot to mention in my oatmeal recipe that I add 9 cups of water in the slow cooker

  • Steve

    Sorry again, the flax seed, amla, hemp seed and soy milk are all added to the individual bowl of oatmeal when I go to eat it

  • skingk

    My gastroenterologist flatly stated that there was no cure for the
    “persistent carpet like polyp” he had been controlling with burning for
    two years. However when I drank amla tea upon rising and before
    retiring at night for three weeks prior to my next colonoscopy, the
    polyp was just a few small, eroded looking patches instead of the
    previously observed continuous carpet like polyp.

    I am hopeful the next exam finds a complete absence of the polyp. The doctor had previously concluded a section of my colon would have to be removed due to worsening conditions. Now he says it is not needed.

    • Thea

      skingk: Wow. That’s amazing. I think that’s so cool. It sounds like you may have saved yourself a great deal of pain, money and hassle. Good for you and I’ll keep my fingers crossed for you. Thanks for sharing!

    • Toddflexivore

      Awesome… Great news! Very inspiring. Your post was 9 months ago. Is there an update?

      • skingk

        Instead of twice a year, I now have annual colonoscopies scheduled. The doc says he’ll be convinced if there is no carpet like polyp at the next exam. It’s a fairly rare thing as only two other of the doc’s hundreds of patients have it.

        • Toddflexivore

          Great. Thanks for letting me know.

  • Richard

    I found a good source to buy Amla online – including dehydrated Amla (from which you can make a ‘decoction’: simmer 3 tablespoons of dehydrated Amla in 1 qt. of water for 30 – 40 minutes – then mix with an equal amount o d green or white tea). … (541) 741-7307 .. ask for “Halsey” .. tell her “Richard sent you” :)

    I just bought a pound of dehydrated certified organic/Kosher Alma for $11.00.

    They also have bulk white tea.

    Hope this helps! :)

    • BT

      Richard that is an exceptional value at $11 USD per pound. I managed to get my costs down to $13 per pound by buying 5 lb bags but your source is superior to that arrangement. Thank you for posting…you’ve saved me significant $$.

      • Richard

        BT –

        You’re welcome! :)

        BTW, what are you using Amla for, and how – if you don’t mind me asking?

        I’m going to start using it for a mouthwash, since I have problems with my gums. But I thought about using it preventatively “for the rest of me” in capsule form, too.


        • BT

          I use it as a preventative measure for general health and its properties for anti-cancer cell growth. I use in smoothies but also load capsules for those times when smoothies aren’t available like when traveling. Go to Amazon and look at The Capsule Machine for size 00 or 000 capsules since I’m trying to get a tsp. full with each daily dose.. you want a big enough capsule so you don’t spend a week loading them or need to carry 200 for three days dosage. For mouthwash I find that a 1:1 ratio of Hydrogen Peroxide and water has remarkable curative effect – just swish for 30 seconds or so and spit.

      • Sudha Zaveri

        it costs less than 20 cents per kg. fresh amla in India wholesale. Big cities like Mumbai retail costs $1 per kilogram.

  • Larry

    looks like your picture illustrating amla is of the standard gooseberry (Ribes) rather than the Indian Phyllanthus /Emblica

  • ru

    Is amla in capsule form as effective as powdered amla?

  • Derrek

    I was told Dr. Greger suggests looking into Terrafoods for amla gooserries. Is it terrasoul? I can’t find Terrafoods. Anyone else have an other suggestions?

    Would about for goji berries?

  • Dr Greger scheduled to tell everything he knows about eating #PlantBased to treat and manage #Cancer at:

    • Thea

      Rivka: Cool. Thanks for that link. Sounds like a great talk. Nice to see Dr. Greger is doing something like that.

  • dragon

    Try Chinese herbal shop and ask for 油多子。 it is the same thing, only smaller in size.

    • dragon

      Sorry, fotgot to mention that you will need to ask the Chinese herbal shop to powder the dried 油甘子 for you. Some shops do offer powdering dried herbs, that is if you buy the herbs from them in the first place.

  • Toddflexivore

    Dr. Gregor, Just a quick question about this video clip. At the end you mentioned that normal cells also reduce in size sightly. Are these cells that should shrink in size or are there potential issues associated with these cells slightly reducing in size? Thanks

    • Joseph Gonzales R.D.

      Good question. I’m not sure it was significant, but yes normal cells were affected by amla, however, the dramatic drop in cancerous cell growth perhaps outweighs that risk, but of course human trials are needed.

  • JP

    I have to say, as a cancer patient, I want to believe more than anyone that a plant based diet and herbs could replace chemo. However, I do feel that, while it is great to eat healthy, if this diet was a cure it would be highly recommended by doctors. I do think that there might be some truth to money making being an issue with natural remedies, but I also think that people truly want to find a cure. If all outside variables could be illiminated and scientific proof was availible that plant based diets could get rid of Lymphoma these studies would replace drugs.

    • Fabio

      I don’t think that if this diet was a cure than it would be highly recommended by doctors. Just like the diet that undoubtedly cures artery clogging and prevents heart stroke is not highly recommended by doctors, who happily rely on prescribing statins and other drugs. Just like the diet that cures diabetes is not highly recommended by doctors, who happily rely on drugs and insulin. Unfortunately the reality is way more complex (and sad) than the simple “if it’s the best thing, than it’d surely be used” logic. Hope your treatment went fine!

  • JoJo


    I don’t live in the US, and after searching online to buy Amla powder, most of the time the one I find are for hair / external use.
    Is it possible to eat this amla that is sold for “external use” when it’s 100% amla powder or is it different from the edible amla powder?
    thks for your help

  • Wilma Laura Wiggins

    I was reading a study or two mentioned here and was led to studies on Indian Gooseberry which shows promise for cancer prevention and treatment. Here was the last comment: “For Phyllanthus emblica to become relevant clinically, it is
    imperative that the molecules mediating the antitumor effects of the
    plant be identified and even more potent, patentable derivatives
    synthesized. Without the possibility of patents, the pharmaceutical
    industry will undoubtedly not invest the enormous amount of money
    required to carry out clinical trials using these putative
    chemotherapeutics. Such evidenced-based trials will eventually be
    necessary to prove the worth of these extracts in preventing and
    treating human cancer.” O.K. my question is why does it have to be a pharmaceutical company that does these trials? Why can’t it be the American Cancer Society (richest charity in the world), or National Cancer Institute or even St. Jude’s Hospital or similar organizations? Isn’t that the By the way, early detection is obviously NOT prevention. I think it is high time to withhold our support from these groups until they show us the results – especially regarding prevention. An ounce of prevention is, indeed, worth a pound of cure. That’s my opinion anyway.

    • rebeccagavin

      Who ever was able to identify and synthesize whatever properties in Amla prevents or cures cancer would certainly be able to patent the results. What a ridiculous premise. The end result would no longer be gooseberries, would it?

      • Thea

        rebeccagavin: What if it is not one or two or even ten properties? What if is all the hundreds of phytonutrients together that *are* the gooseberries?

        • rebeccagavin

          Regardless, if they were able to synthesize or even just standardize the dosage with studies that confirmed effectiveness they could patent it.

  • Mike

    More Male Pattern Baldness Videos Please!!!!!

  • Sam

    Why doesn’t Dr.Greger advise on consumtion of triphala?

  • pie

    We can only find Colombian gooseberries here in Singapore. Is that not like the Indian gooseberry?

    • Thanks for your question.

      While the name maybe similar, it appears that these plants are different.

      Nevertheless, according to this review:

      “Epidemiological studies from other parts of the world indicate that increased consumption of fruits and vegetables are associated with lower risk of chronic degenerative diseases (Reddy, Sreeramulu, & Raghunath, 2010). Various bioactive compounds (withanolides and phenolics) are reported to be present in P. peruviana (Dinan et al., 1997). Some of these compounds have a strong antioxidant property and prevent peroxidative damage to liver microsomes and hepato- cytes (Wang, Lin-Shiau, & Lin, 1999).”

      In medicine:

      “Cape gooseberry is used in folk medicine for treating diseases such as malaria, asthma, hepatitis, dermatitis, diuretic and rheumatism (Wu, Ng, Chen, et al., 2004; Wu, Ng, Lin, et al., 2004). Many medicinal properties have been attributed to cape gooseberry, including antiasthmatic, antiseptic, and strengthener for the optic nerve, treatment of throat affections and elimination of intestinal parasites, amoebas as well as albumin from kidneys. It has an anti-ulcer activity and it is effective in reducing cholesterol level (Arun & Asha, 2007; Mayorga et al., 2001). In addition to having a future as a fresh fruit, the fruit can be consumed in many ways as an ingredient in salads, cooked dishes, dessert, jam, natural snack and preservers. Its extract can also be used for preparing a health drink (Popenoe et al., 1990; Rehm & Espig, 1991).”

      Hope this answer helps.

      • pie

        Thank you for your answer! So, am I to assume Colombian gooseberry is the same as Cape gooseberry?