Triphala : Ayurvedic Digestive Tonic
Triphala is one of Ayurveda’s best-loved remedies for a variety of problems. For ages, it has been revered as a powerful tonic that has earned it various sobriquets from layman and now laurels are pouring in from the scientific community.
Literally, tiphala refers to three fruits — Haritaki (terminalia chebula), Amalaki (Emblica officinalis) and Bibhitaki (Terminalia balerica) that make up a powerful rasayana or a medicament that nourishes general health and promotes longevity. Individually, the three fruits are power packed mainstays of Ayurvedic herbs. When combined (usually in equal proportions), the synergy enhance the healing potentials exceptionally. Ayurvedic physicians or vaids often refer to Triphala as “gentle and caring like a mother,” and a good vaid is believed to cure any disease if he is familiar with the potentials of Triphala.
Many believe that Triphala is a mild laxative that helps in regulating bowel movements by clearing toxins form the digestive system. Triphala, in fact, is a well known panacea that has many wide and varied uses as a therapeutic herbal food. It is widely recommended for eye diseases like conjunctivitis, early stages of glaucoma and cataracts. Besides being taken internally, it is also applied as an eye wash.
HARITAKI- One of the oldest herbs known to mankind, haritaki is depicted in various ancient texts as the chief ingredient in several Ayurvedic remedies. Imbibed with bitter flavor, haritaki is associated with vata humor and tents to balance the vata problems. It is noted for its digestive, carminative, laxative and rejuvenating properties. Of the three fruits, haritaki is the most laxative and is known for its tonic effect on the body. Charak compares its usefulness to mother’s milk. In particular it stimulates liver functions and is good for the digestive system and the eyes.
AMALAKI- Ayurveda revers amalaki as a divine plant and Charak considers it among the best rejuvenating herbs. Except for the salty taste, the remaining five tastes are present in amalaki which makes it ideal in balancing the three doshas. Amalaki enhancing food absorption and thereby helps in detoxification. It enhances digestion and helps in balancing the stomach acid. Amalaki is a rich of source of vitamin C which makes it a powerpack of antioxidants. Besides there are other minerals that help to nourish the skin,
BIBHITAKI – Another pillar of Triphala, bibhitaki is astringent in nature and replete with several good qualities. Charak appreciates its pitta and kapha pacifying virtues, besides cleansing the blood, muscle and the fat tissue. Because of its heating nature, bibhitaki is believed to clear the clogged channels.