Triphala, which directly translates to ‘three kinds of fruits’ in Sanskrit, is a herbal medicine that is an important part of the Ayurvedic tradition of healing in India.
Triphala is made by combining three Indian superfruits – Amalaki, Bibhitaka and Haritaki. These three traditional fruits have powerful medicinal value owing to their anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidising properties.
For ages, Ayurveda has made use of the healing abilities of various plants. When these plants and herbs are combined, they become potent concoctions that can heal from a variety of diseases and conditions.
Triphala is, therefore, an important and powerful Ayurvedic medicine and has become increasingly popular over the last few years. It is suitable for consumption by adults, children, and the elderly.
This ayurvedic medicine is known for aiding digestion, supporting bowel functions, and since it is an excellent antioxidant, it strengthens the overall immune system and also helps in getting rid of toxic waste from the body.
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Nutritional Value of Triphala
Half a teaspoon of Triphala has about 10 calories. It consists entirely of carbohydrates and doesn’t contain any fats or proteins.
The Ayurvedic tradition is not in complete disagreement with science when it comes to the nutritional and health benefits of Triphala. As it turns out, Triphala is a powerful medicine that can cure various health conditions and heal your body. Triphala is a potent medicine mainly because of the properties that its three primary ingredients contain:
Also known as Phyllanthus Emblica or the Indian gooseberry, Amalaki is a rich source of Vitamin C. One single Amalaki fruit contains approximately 3000 mg of Vitamin C.
It is also abundant in minerals, and plant compounds such as phyllembelic acid, tannins, rutin, phenols, and curcuminoids. Amalaki is added to Triphala for its ability to regulate blood sugar levels, strengthen the body’s immune system and detoxify the mouth, as well as the liver.
The second fruit used in making Triphala is Bibhitaka, or Terminalia bellirica, and is known for the healing effects it has on the body’s lungs. Bibhitaka has astringent properties and helps the body remove Kapha dosha by helping expel water from the lungs, the urinary tract and the digestive tract.
Bibhitaki is also good at fighting off bacterial and viral infections, and the presence of tannins, flavones and other compounds adds to the medicinal benefits it brings to your body. Two phytochemicals in particular – ellagic acid and gallic acid – regulate your body weight and your blood sugar levels.
The third fruit, Haritaki, has the scientific name Terminalia chebula. This fruit is also known as ‘black myrobalan.’ According to ayurveda, haritaki addresses the airy Vata in the body. It is also known to strengthen your immune system and is known for its laxative properties, and helps regenerate body tissues. Haritaki has also been linked to aiding heart disease, ulcers, asthma and more. The presence of phytochemicals like polyphenols and terpenes, among others, makes this fruit a powerhouse capable of delivering various health benefits.
8 Health Benefits of Triphala
The health benefits of Triphala extend beyond the Ayurvedic community. Some choose to consume it with food, but Triphala is known to be best taken on an empty stomach in the morning or right before going to bed at night.
1. Triphala Helps in Controlling Diabetes
Triphala is known for helping patients with Type 2 Diabetes.
A recent article published in the International Journal of Ayurvedic Medicine revealed that Triphala helps in regulating blood sugar and cholesterol levels in your body.
The phytochemicals in Bibhitaka promote insulin secretion from the pancreas thereby lowering sugar levels and improving insulin resistance.
2. Triphala has Rich Antioxidant
Triphala is a rich source of polyphenols that can fight against free radicals.
Free radicals are molecules in your body that cause cell damage and lead to various illnesses. Rich antioxidants in Triphala reduce oxidative stress and reduce inflammation caused by free radicals.
Triphala is high in Vitamin C which stimulates the production of WBC and enhances its function.
Read this research to know more about the antioxidant properties of Triphala.
3. Triphala Helps Improve Digestive System
Triphala is a good natural laxative and can help you loosen your stools and improve bowel movements. It is also a good contender for dealing with Irritable Bowel Syndrome.
Triphala strengthens the digestive tract by increasing the number of good bacteria in your intestinal tract. Studies show that Triphala promotes proper absorption of food, relaxes bile ducts and maintains homeostasis of the endocrine system.
4. Triphala has a Good Immunomodulator
A study published in The Indian Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences found that Triphala helps boost your immune system. Research has proved that Triphala acts as an immunosuppressant i.e biological response modifier that improves the defence mechanism of our bodies against diseases. It helps in producing antibodies to fight against infection, pathogens and viruses.
Triphala is a perfect antidote for allergies. Its strong anti-inflammatory powers bring relief from any pain or discomfort.
5. Triphala Boosts Dental Health
Studies show that Triphala helps eliminate oral germs, helping you maintain your dental health. Triphala also comes in handy in reducing gum accumulation and gingival inflammation.
An article published in The Indian Journal of Dental Research found that a mouthwash made using Triphala was as effective as any medically prescribed mouthwash.
6. Triphala Helps Improve Hair and Skin Quality
Both, consuming Triphala and applying Triphala paste to your hair improve hair quality. Since Triphala boosts digestive health, it inadvertently makes your skin and hair healthier.
Triphala also has antifungal and antibacterial properties. Applying its paste to your scalp can enhance hair quality and prevent premature ageing.
Triphala is also used to deal with skin conditions such as severe acne and eczema.
7. Triphala Aids in Weight Loss
Triphala strengthens and tones the colon tissue and can help reduce the excess fat that gathers around the abdomen. Furthermore, it helps in removing toxins from the body and boosts metabolism.
This helps maintain a healthy weight and keep high-risk diseases such as heart attacks, high blood pressure, diabetes and bad cholesterol at bay.
8. Triphala Enhances Vision
Research shows that regular intake of Triphala in any form has ocular enhancing properties. It boosts vision and provides protection against eye ailments such as cataracts, glaucoma or computer vision syndrome.
Doctors also prescribe Triphala water to cleanse eyes. However, you shouldn’t do so unless recommended by a Doctor.
Best Ways to Consume Triphala
Triphala is mostly available in three forms. You can either get it as a tablet, a capsule, or in powder form.
The best time to consume Triphala is typically between half an hour to two hours before your meals. If you are using Triphala as a curative for constipation, then the best time to consume it is before going to sleep.
The dosage of Triphala pills or capsules is suggested on the bottle or by a medical practitioner. The liquid extract form can be used for external application on hair or skin. The powdered form of Triphala can be mixed with water and consumed.
Triphala powder is commonly mixed with honey or a few drops of lemon juice since it can be pretty bitter if consumed independently.
Traditionally, the best way to take Triphala powder is as Triphala water or Triphala tea. Read through the recipes below and choose the way you’d like to consume Triphala powder.
1. Triphala Left Overnight
Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: None.
- ½ tsp. Triphala powder
- 250ml water
- Take Triphala powder and add it to a glass of water.
- Mix well.
- Allow the mixture to sit at room temperature overnight.
- Consume the next morning on an empty stomach.
This method also helps you in losing weight and maintaining good skin health.
2. Triphala Tea
Preparation Time: 5 minutes
Cooking Time: 10 minutes
- 1/4th tsp Triphala powder
- 250 ml water
- 1-inch Cinnamon stick
- 1 tsp H oney or maple syrup(optional)
- Add Triphala powder to water in a pan.
- Bring to a simmer and let it boil.
- Add cinnamon sticks and honey or maple syrup if you want, and let it simmer.
- Remove the tea from the boil and pour yourself a cup.
Triphala is a great Ayurvedic restorative that has various curative and healing properties. A part of Indian tradition for centuries, recent scientific evidence has corroborated much of what Ayurvedic healers have long propagated about the health benefits of Triphala.
If you are looking for a powerful health supplement that can boost your body and make you feel lively and energetic, then Triphala is the perfect solution for your holistic healing.
Frequently Asked Question (FAQs)
What does Triphala do for the body?
Triphala is known for aiding digestion, supporting bowel functions, and since it is rich in antioxidants, it strengthens the overall immune system. It also improves vision and enhances skin and hair health.
Is it good to take Triphala every day?
Yes, a moderate amount of Triphala every day is highly beneficial. Have 500 mg or 1 gram of it half an hour to two hours before your meals.
Does Triphala have side effects?
Yes, the consumption of Triphala may have negative effects on some people. Side effects of Triphala include gas, diarrhoea, cramps, stomach upset and many other gastrointestinal effects owing to its laxative properties. These effects may range from mild to severe. It is advisable to limit or stop its usage based on your condition. Triphala may also bring the blood pressure to a dangerously low level. Thus people who suffer from low blood pressure should avoid Triphala. Triphala may also interfere with certain medications and hence one should always consult their doctors about Triphala consumption when already on medication.
Who should not take Triphala?
Pregnant women and females trying to conceive should not take Triphala. This is because Haritaki, one of the ingredients of Triphala is considered harmful for expecting mothers and can even cause abortion. Triphala may also bring the blood pressure to a dangerously low level. Thus, people who suffer from low blood pressure should avoid Triphala.
When should I take Triphala?
The best time to consume Triphala is typically half an hour to two hours before your meals.
Does Triphala help in weight loss?
Yes, Triphala strengthens and tones the colon tissue and can help reduce the excess fat that gathers around the abdomen. Furthermore, it helps in removing toxins from the body and boosts metabolism. This helps maintain a healthy weight and keep high-risk diseases such as heart attacks, high blood pressure, diabetes and bad cholesterol at bay.
Is Triphala good for grey hair?
Yes, applying Triphala paste to your hair can help prevent premature ageing that causes grey hair.
Is Triphala good for the liver?
Triphala is one of the best liver-balancing remedies. The blend of Amalaki, Bibhitaki and Haritaki detoxifies the liver, stimulates the flow of bile and also has nutritional properties. Triphala helps keep liver-related conditions like fatty liver at bay too.
How long does it take Triphala to work for constipation?
According to a 2008 study, it takes around 2 weeks for Triphala powder to work for constipation.
Can Triphala cause weight gain?
No, Triphala does not cause weight gain. Consumption of Triphala powder can help you lose excess weight, especially around your abdomen. It helps maintain a healthy weight and keep high-risk diseases such as heart attacks, high blood pressure, diabetes and bad cholesterol at bay.
How do you detox with Triphala?
Triphala is mostly available in three forms. You can either get it as a tablet, a capsule, or in powder form. The dosage of Triphala pills or capsules is suggested on the bottle or by a medical practitioner. The powdered form of Triphala can be mixed with water and consumed. Triphala powder is commonly mixed with honey or a few drops of lemon juice to balance its bitter taste.
Can Triphala be taken in the morning?
Yes, having a cup of Triphala water on an empty stomach in the morning is one of the best remedies for constipation.