Haritaki - Terminalia chebula 101

Haritaki Frequently Asked Questions

Curious about the digestive support, joint and osteoarthritic support, and nootropic brain health support of Haritaki (Terminalia chebula) herbal extract? Check out these resources and scroll down to find answers to common questions.

“The King of All Medicines”

Haritaki FAQ - Linden Botanicals

Do you sell Haritaki (Terminalia chebula)?

We sell Haritaki in a 100 gram size (50 servings) as ACK! Joint Support and GURGLE! Digestive Support. We also sell Haritaki in larger 200 gram to 1,000 gram sizes. In addition, Haritaki is one of five nootropic extracts in our BrainStorm Nootropic Brain Health Kits. Visit our online store.

Is Terminalia chebula called Haritaki?

Yes! Terminalia chebula also goes by the names Haritaki and Myrobalan. It’s often referred to as the King of Medicines.

Other less common names include Abhaya, Alalekaayi, Ammai, Amutam, Aralu terminalia, Black Myrobalan, Chebulic Myroblan, Chebulic Myrobalan, Chieu Lieu Xanh, Halela, Har, Harre, Harad, Hezi, Hilika, Himaja, Horitaki, Ink Nut, Kadukki, Karakkaya, Katukka, Myroblan, Ordo, Pathya, Sa Mao Tchet, Shilikha, Somz Moox Kh’ook, Varikkai, and Zhang–Qin–Ge.

What are the health benefits of Haritaki?

The main uses are in support of digestive health and joint health. Preparations are also used as a cardiotonic. Therapeutic uses include strengthening and nourishing the joint tissues and supporting the proper function of the colon, lungs, liver, and spleen. Highly revered in India, it’s believed to increase energy, intelligence, and awareness.

Haritaki therapeutic uses include removing toxins and reducing hypertension. It’s rich in vitamin C and has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. Other properties include antiarthritic, antibacterial, anticaries, anticholinerterase, antidiabetic, antifungal, cardioprotective, cytoprotective, hepatoprotective, immunomodulatory, nephroprotective, and prokinetic.

What are other health benefits of Haritaki?

Haritaki interacts with the respiratory, circulatory, digestive, nervous, renal, and integumentary body systems. Today, it’s generally recognized that it supports a healthy lifestyle approach related to issues with cardiovascular disease, immunity, metabolic syndrome, diabetes, psychological stress, and neurocognition.

Here’s what the International Journal of Ayurveda and Alternative Medicine says about Terminalia health benefits: “Terminalia chebula (Haritaki) has been extensively used in Ayurveda, Unani & Homeopathy medicine & has become cynosure of modern medicine. The fruits of tree possess diverse health benefits and have been used as traditional medicines as a household remedy.

“Recently, the herb is of great interest to researchers across the globe because of its reported medicinal properties like antioxidant, antibacterial, anti-fungal, anti-neoplastic, antiviral, anti-diabetic, cardio protective, immunomodulatory, etc. [Terminalia] is a well known Rasayana which prevents aging and imparts longevity, immunity and body resistance against diseases and is also used extensively in several Ayurvedic formulations prescribed for infectious diseases such as chronic ulcers, leucorrhoea, pyorrhea and fungal infections of the skin.”

There is good reason to believe that a lifestyle-related approach to optimal health will benefit from support with Haritaki as a health supplement.

What joint health support does it provide?

Studies suggest that using Terminalia chebula as a dietary supplement has the potential to improve joint mobility, comfort, and functional capacity.

A recent randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study suggests Haritaki extract may be effective at improving joint health and decreasing joint discomfort. Studies in healthy subjects report that use of Haritaki as a dietary supplement can increase the reported pain threshold related to range of motion and duration of joint activity. In other words, the subjects of the study were able to be active longer and to bend joints further before reporting the activity as painful.

Can it help relieve osteoarthritic pain?

The fruit of Terminalia chebula has been used extensively in many traditional health systems for different ailments, including those that affect joint health. Recent studies suggest that using it as a dietary supplement may improve joint mobility, comfort, and functional capacity.

A recent randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study suggests Terminalia extract may be effective at improving joint health and decreasing joint discomfort. Studies in healthy subjects report that use of it as a dietary supplement can increase the reported pain threshold related to range of motion and duration of joint activity. The subjects of the study were able to be active longer and bend joints further before reporting the activity as painful.

A 2016 study published in the Journal of Anaesthesiology Clinical Pharmacology revealed that it may help to relieve pain. In the study, it significantly increased pain threshold and pain tolerance. Additional research is warranted to further establish the analgesic efficacy of the drug in patients suffering from osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis and other painful conditions.

Other studies have shown that the extract increased pain threshold and tolerance, similar to many NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs). An ethanol extract of the herb showed an effect against collagen-induced osteoarthritis. The herb’s anti-inflammatory properties were exhibited against cytokines TNF, IL-6, and IL-1. The plant also relieved pain associated with rheumatoid arthritis, which is often characterized by the inflammation of synovial joints, bone erosion, and cartilage destruction.

Can it help with digestive and intestinal issues?

One main traditional use is to promote healthy digestion and address digestive disorders. In traditional systems, it’s seen as being useful for constipation, irritable bowel system, flatulence, ulcers, vomiting, intermittent fever, kidney stones, and hemorrhoids. It maintains regular elimination, helping to clear accumulated toxins in the gut.

Can it support heart health?

By supporting the removal of the body’s toxins in a natural way and by improving digestion, Terminalia may help boost metabolism, support metabolic syndromes, improve energy, and reduce hypertension, thus helping heart health.

Can it support skin health?

External applications are used on eczema, acne, and small wounds.

Can it help manage stress?

Terminalia is an adaptogenic herb. Adaptogens help the body combat the effects of stress and enable the body to function normally during traumatic periods. Terminalia helps maintain the balance of the nerves when you’re under stress.

Oxidative stress occurs due to an imbalance between the production of pro-oxidants and detoxification. It increases when Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) are produced in large quantities. These ROS and free radicals can damage body tissues and result in degenerative diseases.

The high number of phytoconstituents found in Haritaki is attributed to its antioxidant activity. These polyphenols protect cell constituents against potential oxidative damage that could damage cells and tissues. Chenulanin, casuarinin, and chebulinic acid also scavenge free radicals.

This study published in The Journal of Enzyme Inhibition and Medicinal Chemistry suggests the possibility of using the extract as a nutraceutical health supplement in the management of type 2 diabetes.

Does it support brain health? Is it a nootropic?

It’s a nootropic (substances that may improve cognitive function, particularly memory, creativity, and motivation). It’s valued for its healing and rejuvenating powers and believed to increase energy, intelligence, and awareness. In particular, it’s used to support the treatment of cognitive deficits and improve learning and memory.

Terminalia has a wide variety of constituents believed to affect cognition. It has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects and is used to support treatment for Alzheimer’s disease, the most common form of dementia. A study published in Advances in Pharmacological and Pharmaceutical Sciences indicates that Terminalia chebula extracts and its constituents have AChEI and antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects, all of which are currently relevant to the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease.

It’s also commonly used as a rejuvenator of the mind and a meditation support to increase clarity of thought. Haritaki is also one of five nootropics extracts in our BrainStorm Nootropic Brain Health Kits

What is its hypolipidemic activity?

It may significantly reduce lipid levels. This hypolipidemic activity has been attributed to corilagin and chebulinic acid found in the plant. Clinical outcomes have showed that the herb’s tannin may significantly reduce hyperglycemia and hyperlipidemia.

What dental support does it provide?

An Oral Health and Dentistry study recommends the use of a Haritaki-based mouthwash to help prevent dental cavities. Although regular brushing and flossing may also help to prevent dental cavities, using a Haritaki-based mouthwash can be very effective and support good dental hygiene. The herb contains Triphala, a main active ingredient that targets Streptococcus mutans. Another study revealed that using 0.6% Triphala may prevent the formation of dental plaques.

What are the plant’s traditional uses?

A story in the ancient Sanskrit texts says that Indra, the King of Heaven, let a drop of nectar fall to earth. Where it landed, the Haritaki tree came to life. Ayurvedic healers have long called Terminalia chebula the “king of all medicines,” believing it can destroy all diseases (roga in Sanscrit), eliminate all waste from the body, and promote tissue growth and health.

In the vedic tradition, the word roga is not limited to physical diseases; instead, it extends to all suffering that makes us powerless or out of tune physically, mentally, or spiritually. The belief is that Haritaki enhances the buildup of prana, a subtle energy that awakens the non-mechanical parts of the brain, making you more capable, sensitive, and intelligent, enabling you to grow in awareness.

A key traditional use of Haritaki in Ayruvedic practice is to support the digestive system. Haritaki has been used to address digestive disorders, irregular fevers, constipation, flatulence, ulcers, vomiting, colic, and hemorrhoids. It may also help with other gastrointestinal ailments such as ascites, enlargement of the liver or spleen, worms, colitis, and food poisoning.

By supporting the natural removal of toxins and improving digestion, Haritaki may help with metabolic syndromes, improve energy, and reduce hypertension, thus supporting heart health.

In Tibetan literature, different parts of the Haritaki tree have special therapeutic purposes. The roots are used to treat diseases of the bone, the stem to treat muscle diseases, the bark to treat skin diseases, the branches to treat vascular disorders, the leaves to treat visceral diseases, and the fruit to support vital organs, including the heart.

Can you describe the plant?

Haritaki plants are very large deciduous trees that grow up to 100 feet tall. The branches often form in tiers. They grow in sunny forests and thickets and are often cultivated on village commons.

The Latin name for Haritaki, Terminalia chebula, refers to the flowers and fruit of the tree that are borne on terminal spikes or panicles. The fruits are five-ridged, ellipsoid drupes, yellow to orange-brown in color, with a single angled stone. The fruit and the pulp inside the stone are used for medicinal purposes. Botanically, they are in the order Myrtales, family Combretaceae (Indian almond family).

How did you choose your Haritaki supplier?

The plants can be found in India, Myanmar, and Bangladesh, as well as in Iran, Egypt, Turkey, and China. In India, it’s well accepted that different growing regions produce fruits with varying properties and qualities. At Linden Botanicals, we prefer the Vijaya variety. We source our Haritaki from the Vindhya Range in India.

For each of the products we sell, company owner Michael Van der Linden and members of our team do substantial research, visit the source, and meet with the collectors and processors personally. We back up our faith in our source and our processors with testing.

How do I consume Haritaki extract?

Instructions: Add 1/2 teaspoon of concentrate to 8 ounces of water or a cup of juice. Stir until dissolved. Drink 1-2 glasses a day. You can also mix 1/2 teaspoon with 1 teaspoon honey, add the mixture to warm water, and drink it as a tea.

Our team also developed a simple joint health smoothie recipe and digestive health smoothie recipe. These smoothies are blended drinks of fresh fruits, dark leafy greens, supplements, and Haritaki extract that will help you improve your memory while also energizing you and transforming your body from the inside out. Best of all — they taste great!

Does Haritaki have caffeine?

No.

What glycosides, phenolics, polyphenols, and tannins does it include?

First, let’s break it down. Glycosides are naturally occurring substances in which a carbohydrate portion is combined with a hydroxy compound. Glycosides are often used in the treatment of heart diseases. Phenolics may work as antioxidants that prevent cellular damage due to free-radical oxidation reactions and promote anti-inflammatory conditions in your body. Polyphenols are micronutrients packed with antioxidants and potential health benefits. It’s thought that polyphenols can improve digestion issues, weight management difficulties, diabetes, neurodegenerative disease, and cardiovascular diseases. Finally, tannins have anti- carcinogenic and anti-mutagenic properties.

Haritaki glycosides include chebulosides I and II, arjunglucoside, arjunin, 2Ƚ-hydroxyursolic acid, and 2Ƚ-hydroxymicromiric acid.

Its phenolics include chebulinic acid, ellagic acid, anthraquinones, 2,4 chebulyl-b-D-glucopyranose, luteolin, and tannic acid.

Its polyphenols include corilagin, galloyl glucose, punicalagin, terflavin A, maslinic acid, punicalin, punicalagin, terflavin B, terflavin C, and terflavin D.

Its tannins include gallic acid, chebulagic acid, punicalagin, chebulanin, corilagin, neochebulinic acid, ellagic acid, chebulinic acid, 1,2,3,4,6-penta-O-galloyl-Ⱦ-D-glucose, 1,6-di-o-galloyl-D-glucose, casuarinin, 3,4,6-tri-o-glloyl-D-glucose, and terchebulin.

What if I have more questions about Haritaki?

You can read more scientific studies by visiting the National Center for Biotechnology Information website. Also feel free to reach out!

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