As an alternative to Western medicine, Ayurvedic healing techniques attempt to preserve and restore health by strengthening the body, mind and spirit. Triphala remains one of the most effective Ayurveda herbal formulas used to accomplish this goal. Due to the powerful effects, you need to take certain precautions to achieve optimal results.
A Triphala (which means three fruit) formula consists mainly of three tropical fruit-bearing plants: Amalaki, Haritaki and Bibhitaki. Each herb contributes to the powerful healing effects. For example, containing more vitamin C then orange juice, Amalaki (Indian gooseberry) strengthens the immunity system, Haritaki works as a powerful laxative to purify the digestive system, while Bibhitaki eliminates an excess of mucus, especially in the lungs, assisting in the treatment of many lung disorders.
In addition, a number of research studies suggest the possible use of Triphala to fight certain cancers as well as to lessen symptoms associated with disorders of the nervous system such as Alzheimer disease. Other usages include aiding in digestion, eliminating fat, and balancing sugar levels.
Although you can take Triphala daily over a long period, due to the powerful cleansing and detoxifying effects, you need to start slowly, consuming about a quarter of the recommended dosage. As you increase the dosage, you might have digestive problems such as gas, upset stomach, loose stools and diarrhea. If you experience any of these symptoms, return to a lower dosage until these symptoms cease.
Most Ayurvedic practitioners also recommend taking Triphala about a half hour before bedtime. Do not take Triphala with meals. Instead, you need to take Triphala on an empty stomach, at least two hours before and after eating any food.
To maintain the effectiveness of the formula, Ayurvedic practitioners recommend stopping the herbal formula after about two months. You can resume using the formula in about two to three weeks
Practitioners also recommend you refrain from using this formula if you suffer from diarrhea and dysentery, due to the possibility of aggravating your distress. As with most medications and herbal formulas, Triphala is not recommended if your pregnant or nursing.
Some Ayurvedic herbs and formulas manufactured overseas may contain harmful ingredients. A funded study by the NCCAM (National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine) in 2004 discovered that 14 of the 70 Ayurvedic remedies manufactured in South Asia contained lead, mercury and/or arsenic at possibly harmful levels.
As with any herb or vitamin, always purchase from a reputable dealer. Your medical practitioner can usually provide this reliable information.