How to Take Triphala Churna for Digestive Health
Here’s how to use the benefits of triphala churna to enhance your digestion, reduce intestinal problems and improve your health in general. Also ahead is how to make up triphala and dosage information.
Triphala churna is an Ayurvedic preparation that is a combination of the powdered fruit of three different trees – haritaki, bibhitaki and amalaki (commonly known as amla).
It is prized in Ayurveda for its ability to balance the doshas (the elements of body and mind) and enhance the process of digestion and elimination. Triphala is known to be beneficial for removing toxins from the digestive tract, cleansing the liver, gallbladder and kidneys and purifying the blood.
There are many other health benefits of triphala and it is prescribed for a wide range of ailments in India. People in Western cultures are now starting to discover the effectiveness of triphala churna for themselves.
The term ‘churna’ means a mixture of powders, so, by definition, triphala churna is simply triphala powder. Here’s how to make it up at home yourself to improve your digestive system and bring your body back into balance.
Recommended Triphala Churna Dosage and When to Take It
When you research how to take triphala churna, the most commonly suggested starting dosage is a level teaspoon (around 4 grams) of the powder, stirred vigorously into a glass of hot water. You leave this mixture to settle for at least twenty minutes, though it is often recommended of several hours, or even all day.
Then drink the whole glass in one sitting, leaving the sediment at the bottom. You then refill the glass with hot water, mix it well and leave it to use again for a second time.
The best time to have this triphala churna tea is in the evening, a couple of hours after dinner and just before bed. Followed again first thing in the morning with the second dose made from the same triphala powder.
The way I do this is to make up my triphala in the morning in a glass of hot water, cover it and leave it for the day. Just before bed I drink it all down and refill the glass with hot water and stir it well ready for the morning. After researching the different brands I settled on this organic preparation and I’ve been very happy with it.
After having the morning’s triphala churna tea you discard the sediment and stir up a new mixture. As a precaution, it should not be used by pregnant women and there are a couple of other potential side effects to be aware of.
On the whole though, triphala churna in an excellent superfood supplement and can be used regularly for detoxification and better digestive health.
Larger Doses for Constipation
At the recommended dose of a teaspoon, triphala is not considered a strong laxative in the same way as cascara sagrada or senna, but more of an internal cleanser and bowel tonic.
In all likelihood, you will be heading to the bathroom soon after you get up in the morning, but this should be a normal and easy bowel movement. If stools are too loose you could try not taking it for a day and then starting again at half the dose and monitoring the effects.
If you do not feel the need to visit the bathroom soon after waking, the amount of triphala you take in the evening could be slowly increased by a gram or so each day (or a little more heaped teaspoon) until the desired result is achieved.
At doses of 8 grams (around two teaspoons) and above for constipation, triphala should have a definite laxative effect for most people. Drinking more of the sediment is also likely to increase it’s effectiveness for this purpose.
It is best used at these higher doses for constipation for shorter periods only, perhaps just a day or two if needed. Triphala churna is however, generally thought to be much safer than other types of laxatives as its rejuvenating properties help to offset the potentially depleting effects of using a laxative.
Unlike some other laxatives, triphala is non-habit forming and is said to strengthen and tonify the internal muscles of the bowels. That said, regular use of laxatives is not recommended. It’s worth seeking out a knowledgeable healthcare professional if constipation becomes a regular digestive problem for you.
Triphala Capsules Before Meals
A simpler way to take triphala is as a digestive aid before meals up to three times a day. This is a good way to take the tablets or triphala capsules like these.
Dosages are usually lower, generally 1 gram or 2 capsules half an hour before a meal, with a large glass of water. At this amount, triphala’s rejuvenating and balancing properties are usually noticed more than with the larger powder dose.
This is a gentler method for getting triphala churna health benefits and would be suitable for people who didn’t want to drink the triphala tea due to the taste. It may however take longer to show obvious beneficial effects as triphala’s cleansing actions would be likely to be less pronounced with the lower dosages in capsules.
How Does Triphala Taste?
With all the tannins and powerful nutritional compounds in amalaki, haritaki and bibhitaki, triphala churna isn’t the best tasting thing you’ll ever try. Ayurvedic medicine says it actually has a combination of five of the six known tastes – bitter, sour, sweet, pungent and astringent, with only salty missing.
When I first tried it the taste was definitely more in favor of the first two of these I’ll admit. But I knew the health benefits and took the strong taste as proof of its potency.
Ayurveda teaches the importance of a balance of all the tastes for good health and in a preparation like triphala churna your taste buds will most likely focus on what you most need. Given Western diets, that’s unlikely to be sweet. Over time the taste has become more balanced to me (or perhaps my taste buds have) with a combination of flavors and I have no problem drinking it regularly.
If you feel the taste may put you off, then good strength triphala capsules may be a good option if you still want to experience the health benefits of triphala churna without going to the trouble of making it up each day.
However, if you’re using it in the larger dosage for internal cleansing, or as an occasional laxative for constipation problems, then this powdered triphala churna, with $4 international delivery, is both better value and considered significantly more effective.
Have you tried using triphala churna before? I’d really like to hear about how you took it and what kind of effect it had on your health for you personally. You can also read more about the many triphala benefits on this site, including how to use it for a different kind of weight loss that has nothing to do with counting calories or starving yourself.
Photo 1 credit: Pilottage / Photo 2 credit: lrargerich