Triphala – A powerful Trinity


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Tri = three, phala = fruits – Triphala is the combination of three natural fruits into one intricate blend with extraordinary health benefits. The supplemental powder is a mix of Amla (Indian Gooseberry), Vibhitaki (Beleric myrobalan), and Haritaki (Chebulic myrobalan). Even individually, these three fruits are highly potent substances with numerous health benefits. In addition, the mix may also include Yashtimadhu powder (licorice) in some cases.

Triphala Churna

Ayurveda uses Triphala churna or Triphala powder as a remedy for many health problems for thousands of years. It is the most extensively documented herb in Ayurvedic writings. Thousands of verses describe its various health benefits and methods of use. It is one of the most popular remedies in Ayurveda.

Ayurveda classifies Triphala as a dosha-balancing rejuvenation tonic. This means it balances Vata, Pitta, and Kapha while nourishing the body at all levels. It can be helpful for people of any age due to its strength, digestion, and immunity-boosting properties. 

It can act as a bowel cleanser in low doses, and at a slightly higher dose, it tends to be a mild laxative. Additionally, some Ayurvedic methods use it as a purgative to detox and cleanse the body of toxin buildup.

The complexity of its composition results in many applications. Modern science acknowledges multiple ways in which Triphala churna can be helpful to improve health and wellbeing. It has antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, immune-modulating, antipyretic, antibacterial, and many more properties. There are various references in Charaka Samhita – a principal text of Ayurveda – that applaud its anti-aging benefits as well. 

It contains potent immune-boosting antioxidants like gallic acid, tannins, and chebulinic acid. It is also rich in bioactive compounds like flavonoids, amino acids, saponins, and fatty acids. These plant-based polyphenols can be extremely useful in establishing good health for the mind and body. 

Triphala For Over All Health

Hair and Skin: Triphala has antifungal and antibacterial properties. The internal and/or external use of triphala powder may improve hair and skin quality in both men and women. A topical paste can be made using triphala powder and water or oil. This paste has use as a mash, tonic, or rinsing liquid for hair and skin. It can reduce the severity of acne, dandruff, eczema, and other common skin and hair conditions. Combining these topical applications with a daily intake of triphala tablets or powder can improve digestion, which also plays an important role in skin and hair health. 

Diabetes: Triphala may improve insulin resistance and could lower blood sugar levels. This is mainly due to the phytochemicals in bibhitaki, one of the 3 fruits in the powder. Modern research on Ayurvedic medicine indicates that triphala has a positive impact on blood sugar and cholesterol levels. However, there are no studies on combining triphala with pharmaceutical medications and how these two interact.

Triphala Benefits For Gut Health

Weight Loss: Ayurveda says that healthy digestion and proper elimination are vital to achieving your ideal weight. For these reasons, Triphala powder can be a helpful part of a long-term solution to obesity. Since it promotes nutrient absorption and includes five of the six tastes (rasa), it promotes healthy eating habits and reduces unnecessary cravings. Combine triphala with a good diet and exercise routine to avail maximum benefits. 

Digestion: Ayurveda believes that most diseases begin in the gut and that poor digestion can lead to various subtle and gross manifestations of illness. Triphala is the foundational pillar of good digestion and gut health in Ayurvedic medicine. Therefore, Triphala churna is a foundational remedy for good health overall. It may promote efficient digestion, absorption of nutrients, and well-functioning elimination. It can also treat hyperacidity, bloating, constipation, and abdominal pain. 

Triphala powder

Constipation: Triphala is a mild laxative and a very gentle bowel tonic. It promotes internal cleansing and maintains the healthy and regular elimination of waste from the body. Moreover, it is commonly used to loosen stools and provide relief in Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). With regular use, triphala helps to restore the balance of gut bacteria and promotes the growth of good bacteria in the intestinal tract.

Cleansing: Lethargy and sluggishness are often the consequence of toxins build up in the body and/or poor digestive fire. Triphala powder helps the body eliminate waste and clears up ama (toxin) built up in the body over a period of time. Amla and haritaki are a ‘powerful rasayana’ – rejuvenating foods. In fact, Medicine Buddha – one of the avatars of Lord Buddha – is depicted with a haritaki fruit in his hand. This is because traditional medicine considers the fruit to be a ‘remover of disease’ and a ‘restorer of health’.

Powderhouse of anti-inflammatory compounds that may help against chronic diseases.

Ayurvedic Uses

Triphala Tea: It is the most common and traditional method to consume Triphala daily. Add half a teaspoon of Triphala powder to a cup of hot water. Stir well, and allow to cool down before you drink it. You may add lemon and/or honey to improve the taste. 

Eye Wash: Add half a teaspoon of Triphala powder to one glass of water; cover it with mesh and store it overnight. In the morning, strain the liquid thoroughly using a doubled muslin cloth (or cheesecloth) as any residue left behind can cause a burning sensation in the eyes. Use this liquid with an eyecup to clean and nourish the eyes.

Hair Wash: Ayurvedic practitioners recommend using Triphala as a nourishing hair rinse to relieve brittle, dry, and damaged hair. Combine the powder with an equal part of licorice powder to make a hair pack. This treatment can be used once a week to prevent frizzy hair, discourage premature graying, and restore the luster of damaged hair. 

Mouth Wash: You can make a simple but effective mouthwash using water and Triphala powder. Use this in the same way as any prescribed mouthwash. It may help restore the gums and teeth to good health and eliminate overnight germ buildup.  

Recommended Triphala

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Triphala Churna/powder. Ayurveda recommends ¼ to ½ teaspoon with warm water, once daily or as directed by your health practitioner.