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10 Health Benefits Of Triphala: The All-Round Remedy You Need

Triphala Health Benefits

Triphala has everything its ingredients amalaki, haritaki, and bibhitaki have to offer individually and then some more. It can strengthen your immunity, digestive system, and eyesight and even act as a cardiac tonic. Triphala can also help manage diabetes, UTIs, arthritis, and gout and even heal wounds or sunburn.

Combining the formidable health benefits of not one but three potent natural herbs, triphala is an easy-to-use and versatile ayurvedic formulation. This powerhouse remedy could, in fact, be the answer to many of your health niggles.

Triphala Combines The Health Benefits Of Amalaki, Haritaki, And Bibhitaki

Each of the herbal remedies in triphala is known to help with a host of ailments individually

A polyherbal ayurvedic medicine, triphala combines the power of three herbs that are in themselves formidable remedies – namely, Indian gooseberry or amalaki (Emblica officinalis); baheda or bibhitaki (Terminalia bellerica); and chebulic myrobalan or haritaki (Terminalia chebula). Together, they create this rejuvenating tonic which can heal the body and help keep up good health of multiple organs, particularly the gastrointestinal system.1

  • Amalaki: Digestive problems, jaundice, diabetes, colic, peptic ulcers, anemia, nausea, vomiting, skin disease, cardiac problems, cold, fever, hair problems, and nerve issues.2
  • Haritaki: Digestive and urinary diseases, skin problems, diabetes, constipation, colic pain, ulcers, vomiting, hemorrhoids, heart disease, and irregular fevers.3
  • Bibhitaki: Digestive problems, diarrhea, dyspepsia, hemorrhoids, hepatitis, bronchitis, fevers, coughs, asthma, eye disease, hair problems, and scorpion sting.4

1. Boosts Immunity And Fights Infections

Ancient ayurvedic practitioners suggest having triphala along with honey and ghee – a treatment known as triphala rasayana – every day for longevity and good health.5

Researchers have found that the trinity of herbal remedies that make up triphala is effective against a range of pathogens, including common causes of infection like E. coli, some variants of Salmonella, and some types of Staphylococcus bacteria, to name a few. Taking triphala every day may help ward off such infections and keep you healthy.6

2. Protects Against Dental Problems

The buildup of dental plaque is a precursor to cavities, gum disease, and other dental health issues. Triphala can help you sidestep all that thanks to its antimicrobial properties. One study found that it was, in fact, able to protect the gums from free radical damage better than commercial toothpastes.7

3. Heals Wounds, Sunburn, And Bruises

Healing a wound that is infected can be a difficult job, but triphala ointment could help. Its antibacterial properties combined with its wound-healing and antioxidant properties make it the perfect topical treatment for wounds.8 It can also be used topically to hasten the healing of sunburns or any bruises you might have.9

4. Soothes And Treats Eye Infections

Whether you are battling glaucoma, cataract, or an uncomfortable case of conjunctivitis or pink eye, triphala could help alleviate the condition. An eye-strengthening remedy, it can be taken internally or used as an eyewash.10

Triphala can also be incorporated into an eyewash to soothe your eyes. This medication can be prescribed to you by an ayurvedic practitioner. Alternatively, pick up triphala eye drops to use as prescribed.

For those who spend long hours at the computer or staring at electronic screens – which is most of us! – the strain on the eyes can be significant. You may wind up with watery, dry irritated eyes, blurred vision, sensitivity to glare, or even a headache. This is dubbed “computer vision syndrome.” And triphala eye drops can help. Researchers have found that the drops relieve these symptoms, ease strain, and also act to strengthen your eyesight in general.11

3. Boosts Digestion

Mix triphala churna with hot water, cool, and have before meals. It can also be mixed with honey or ghee. For its laxative effects, take it two hours after dinner and about half an hour before you sleep.

Taking triphala can help get your digestion going by moving your food along. This improves not just the frequency but also the consistency and amount of stool you pass, since it makes your digestion more effective. Its laxative benefits combined with its ability to improve gut health make it great for your digestion overall. It is also an appetite stimulant, helping those with a sluggish appetite.12

4. Tackles Ulcers

Triphala is also a good remedy for gastric ulcers, as an animal study confirmed when they administered triphala extract to affected test subjects. Triphala helped ease the ulcers, strengthen the mucous membrane of the stomach (gastric mucosa), and restore levels of enzymes that helped counteract the effects of stress and toxins on the body by free radical scavenging.13

5. Treats Diarrhea As Well As Constipation

Triphala is a good remedy for diarrhea. One study found that extracts of the herbal medicine (in doses of 200 mg/kg, 400 mg/kg, or 800 mg/kg) show good antidiarrheal activity, helping increase the time it takes for food to move through your intestines from the stomach and exit as stool.14

When triphala is taken at normal doses, it has laxative effects. Taken at low doses, it is a bowel tonic and when taken in high doses, it is purgative.15 An ayurvedic practioner can guide you on dosage.

Interestingly, while it is anti-diarrheal, triphala also helps anyone who is constipated, due to its laxative properties. What’s more, it helps ease related issues like hyperacidity or gastric discomfort. Researchers who tested triphala for these purposes also confirmed that it had no adverse effects on test subjects.16

6. Fights Urinary Tract Infections

Urinary tract infections are becoming harder to treat due to antibiotic-resistant strains of bacteria that don’t respond to conventional treatment. And that’s where natural and alternative remedies like triphala really come into their own. Researchers have tested components and extracts of triphala powder and found results quite promising. These extracts have shown activity against multidrug-resistant strains of bacteria responsible for causing urinary tract diseases and may offer an effective alternative that’s also safe and side effect-free.17

7. Boosts Heart Health

If you’re carrying extra weight, triphala may also help your weight loss efforts. Test animals on a high-fat diet supplemented by triphala saw significant dips in their body weight and body fat levels compared to those who ate a high-fat diet without the herbal remedy.18

The ayurvedic herbal remedies that make up triphala act as a cardiotonic, helping heart health overall. They may help regulate blood pressure, boost your blood circulation, and bring down cholesterol levels.19 If your lipid or cholesterol levels aren’t what they should be, triphala could be the answer. As one animal study on hypercholestremic rats found, test animals who were given triphala showed a significant reduction in their levels of the “bad” low-density and very low-density lipoprotein (LDL and VLDL) cholesterol as well as total cholesterol.20

8. Helps Manage Diabetes

Some alternative therapists also prescribe triphala for its benefits for those with diabetes. It is believed to help balance your body’s blood sugar levels better.21 The individual constituents of triphala are said to be hypoglycemic, helping bring down and regulate blood sugar levels, which is probably why triphala itself makes a potent remedy for this disease.22

9. Eases Inflammation Linked To Rheumatoid Arthritis And Gout

Taking triphala may also help you if you have gout, an especially painful inflammatory arthritis.23 Animal studies have also demonstrated its anti-arthritic effect. In one study, triphala was found to help ease the bone and cartilage degradation in animals with arthritis.24

10. Fights Some Cancers

Triphala, when used in combination with radiation treatment, has been seen to help radiosensitize breast cancer tumor cells. Even better, normal cells were not adversely affected by the use of the remedy at concentrations that proved toxic to the breast cancer cells.25 Another study demonstrated its potential for fighting prostate cancer and breast cancer. An in-vitro test on these cancer cell lines showed its ability to suppress the growth of cancer cells. The researchers suggested that the polyphenol called “gallic acid” may be responsible for this effect.26

Similarly, encouraging results were obtained in a study on colon cancer cells. Triphala extracts successfully suppressed the growth of human colon cancer stem cells and also brought on cell death of cancer cells (by programmed cell death known as apoptosis).27 It may be a while yet before further human studies can make this a more widespread treatment for cancers, but it certainly has potential worth exploring.

Expert Opinion

If you are taking triphala to improve taste or to treat oral ulcers, then it makes sense to take it in churna (powder) form. For any other purpose, it can be taken in tablet or capsule form. Triphala churna dosage is 1 – 3 grams with honey, ghee or warm water, before food. If you are taking tablets, 1 – 2 in number are usually taken once or twice a day, usually before food. And for capsules, 1 – 2 in number once or twice a day, usually before food.

In all, triphala can work as a remedy for many common ailments, help fend off some serious health issues, and also improve your general health and wellbeing as an everyday tonic. What makes triphala even more appealing as a remedy is that there are no known major side effects. However, be sure to consult your doctor before you start using it on a regular basis. Those with existing medical or health conditions like diabetes or heart problems should always run this herbal remedy by their doctor because of its blood sugar-lowering effects.

References   [ + ]

1, 5, 12, 15. Peterson, Christine Tara, Kate Denniston, and Deepak Chopra. “Therapeutic Uses of Triphala in Ayurvedic Medicine.” The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine 23, no. 8 (2017): 607-614.
2. Dasaroju, Swetha, and Krishna Mohan Gottumukkala. “Current trends in the research of Emblica officinalis (Amla): a pharmacological perspective.” Int J Pharm Sci Rev Res 24, no. 2 (2014): 150-9.
3. Bag, Anwesa, Subir Kumar Bhattacharyya, and Rabi Ranjan Chattopadhyay. “The development of Terminalia chebula Retz.(Combretaceae) in clinical research.” Asian Pacific Journal of tropical biomedicine 3, no. 3 (2013): 244-252.
4. Deb, Anindita, Sikha Barua, and Biswajit Das. “Pharmacological activities of Baheda (Terminalia bellerica): A review.” Journal of pharmacognosy and phytochemistry 5, no. 1 (2016): 194.
6. Tambekar, D. H., B. S. Khante, S. B. Dahikar, and Y. S. Banginwar. “Antibacterial properties of contents of Triphala: A traditional Indian herbal preparation.” Continental J. Microbiol1, no. 3 (2007): 8-12.
7. Jagadish, L., VK Anand Kumar, and V. Kaviyarasan. “Effect of Triphala on dental bio-film.” Indian Journal of Science and Technology 2, no. 1 (2009): 30-33.
8. Kumar, Muthusamy Senthil, Shanmugam Kirubanandan, Ramasamy Sripriya, and Praveen Kumar Sehgal. “Triphala promotes healing of infected full-thickness dermal wound.” Journal of Surgical Research 144, no. 1 (2008): 94-101.
9, 10, 23. Bele, Archana A., Varsha M. Jadhav, and V. J. Kadam. “Potential of tannnins: a review.” Asian Journal of Plant Sciences 9, no. 4 (2010): 209.
11. Gangamma, M. P., and Manjusha Rajagopala Poonam. “A clinical study on “Computer vision syndrome” and its management with Triphala eye drops and Saptamrita Lauha.” Ayu 31, no. 2 (2010): 236.
13. Khushtar, Mohammad, Hefazat H. Siddiqui, Rakesh K. Dixit, M. Salman Khan, Danish Iqbal, and Md Azizur Rahman. “Amelioration of gastric ulcers using a hydro-alcoholic extract of Triphala in indomethacin-induced Wistar rats.” European Journal of Integrative Medicine 8, no. 4 (2016): 546-551.
14. Biradar, Y. S., R. Singh, K. Sharma, K. Dhalwal, S. L. Bodhankar, and K. R. Khandelwal. “Evaluation of anti-diarrhoeal property and acute toxicity of Triphala Mashi, an Ayurvedic formulation.” Journal of herbal pharmacotherapy 7, no. 3-4 (2008): 203-212.
16. Mukherjee, Pulok K., Sujay Rai, Sauvik Bhattacharyya, Pratip Kumar Debnath, Tuhin Kanti Biswas, Utpalendu Jana, Srikanta Pandit, Bishnu Pada Saha, and Pradip K. Paul. “Clinical study of’Triphala’-a well known phytomedicine from India.” Iranian journal of pharmacology and therapeutics 5, no. 1 (2006): 51-0.
17. Bag, Anwesa, Subir Kumar Bhattacharyya, Nishith Kumar Pal, and Rabi Ranjan Chattopadhyay. “Antibacterial potential of hydroalcoholic extracts of Triphala components against multidrug-resistant uropathogenic bacteria–A preliminary report.” (2013).
18. Gurjar, Shaifali, Anuradha Pal, and Suman Kapur. “Triphala and Its Constituents Ameliorate Visceral Adiposity From a High-fat Diet in Mice With Diet-induced Obesity.” Alternative Therapies in Health & Medicine 18, no. 6 (2012).
19. Naik, G. H., K. I. Priyadarsini, and Hari Mohan. “Free radical scavenging reactions and phytochemical analysis of triphala, an ayurvedic formulation.” Current Science (2006): 1100-1105.
20. Saravanan, Selvaraj, Ramasundaram Srikumar, Sundaramahalingam Manikandan, Narayanaperumal Jeya Parthasarathy, and Rathinasamy Sheela Devi. “Hypolipidemic effect of triphala in experimentally induced hypercholesteremic rats.” Yakugaku Zasshi 127, no. 2 (2007): 385-388.
21. Bele, Archana A., Varsha M. Jadhav, and V. J. Kadam. “Potential of tannins: a review.” Asian Journal of Plant Sciences 9, no. 4 (2010): 209.
22. Fatima, Amreen, Parul Agrawal, and Prem Prakash Singh. “Herbal option for diabetes: an overview.” Asian Pacific Journal of Tropical Disease 2 (2012): S536-S544.
24. Kalaiselvan, Sowmiya, and MahaboobKhan Rasool. “Triphala exhibits anti-arthritic effect by ameliorating bone and cartilage degradation in adjuvant-induced arthritic rats.” Immunological investigations 44, no. 4 (2015): 411-426.
25. Baliga, Manjeshwar Shrinath. “Triphala, Ayurvedic formulation for treating and preventing cancer: a review.” The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine 16, no. 12 (2010): 1301-1308.
26. Kaur, Swayamjot, Husheem Michael, Saroj Arora, Pirkko L. Härkönen, and Subodh Kumar. “The in vitro cytotoxic and apoptotic activity of Triphala—an Indian herbal drug.” Journal of Ethnopharmacology 97, no. 1 (2005): 15-20.
27. Vadde, Ramakrishna, Sridhar Radhakrishnan, Lavanya Reddivari, and Jairam KP Vanamala. “Triphala extract suppresses proliferation and induces apoptosis in human colon cancer stem cells via suppressing c-Myc/cyclin D1 and elevation of Bax/Bcl-2 ratio.” BioMed research international2015 (2015).

Disclaimer: The content is purely informative and educational in nature and should not be construed as medical advice. Please use the content only in consultation with an appropriate certified medical or healthcare professional.