Are there triphala hair benefits? Maybe. Here’s what you should know.
Lots of folks want to find that one magical solution for hair growth or to reduce hair loss. Whether it’s a food we can eat for improved hair health or herbs for hair loss, it’s common to search for herbal formulations that benefit our hair.
But while scientific research isn’t there yet — and may never be — a few popular herbal ingredients have shown potential as supportive substances for promoting strong hair strands and a healthy scalp.
One of these natural remedies is triphala, which has been used for thousands of years in Ayurvedic formulations.
We’ll go over triphala hair benefits and how this supplement can be used as an additional method of protection against male pattern baldness and other types of hair loss.
Triphala (also referred to as triphala churna) is an herbal remedy used in the Indian medicinal system of Ayurvedic treatment. It consists of three medicinal plants: haritaki (Terminalia chebula), vibhitaki (Terminalia bellerica) and amla (Emblica officinalis).
Triphala is often used for cavities, stomach ailments, asthma, fever, chronic inflammation and antimicrobial properties, among other things.
While each of the three plants has various health benefits, it’s believed that combining the herbs makes them a more effective and powerful treatment than any one component taken alone.
This Ayurvedic medicine is available in many forms, including capsules, powder form or liquid, with triphala powder being the most common. Triphala powder can be mixed with warm water (or sometimes cold water) to create a beverage.
Ayurvedic practitioners traditionally use triphala as an effective remedy for managing various health, skin and hair conditions.
Keep reading to learn more about triphala hair benefits and what research has been done on this Ayurvedic medicine.
Before we go over triphala hair benefits, it’s important to note that currently, no medicinal herbs are considered a proven “treatment” or “cure” for male pattern baldness.
That’s because this type of hair loss — also referred to as androgenetic alopecia — occurs due to a mix of genetic and hormonal factors.
There may be some nutritional properties of triphala churna that have beneficial effects for keeping hair healthy.
Consuming triphala with warm water as a tea might increase blood circulation, ultimately stimulating your hair follicles and treating scalp issues to encourage healthy hair growth.
One of the three plants in triphala churna is vibhitaka, which has antifungal properties as well as antibacterial properties. Triphala may be used to treat flaky skin as a result of scalp infections or dandruff.
While triphala has shown antimicrobial properties in vitro (test tube studies), there aren’t studies on humans on the effects of triphala churna.
In vitro studies have also shown that triphala may have anti-aging effects and improve skin texture by increasing collagen formation.
Collagen, the most abundant protein in your body that’s essential for connective tissue, may also improve hair health.
Your body uses several amino acids to build keratin, the protein that makes up the hair shaft. When you consume collagen, your body breaks them down into amino acids that are then used to build new proteins and compounds.
Consuming triphala churna may boost your collagen intake, which can enhance skin texture and possibly improve dull hair.
However, human studies on the effects of collagen on hair are lacking, making it difficult to know if this protein promotes hair growth.
The antifungal and antibacterial properties of triphala may help with scalp infections that inhibit hair growth. This could lead to healthier hair growth and a boost in hair volume, although more research is needed to confirm these effects.
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Haritaki, another herb that makes up triphala churna, is a natural source of antioxidants that may help prevent hair breakage, dandruff and lice, according to a 2017 study. Additionally, haritaki is a source of vitamin C, another powerful antioxidant.
As part of a balanced diet, antioxidant activity may reduce hair loss and prevent hindered growth. In other words, consuming a natural source of antioxidants like triphala could boost antioxidant activity to encourage hair growth.
Amla — the third plant used in triphala and also known as Indian gooseberry — is used as a traditional hair tonic, often for enriching hair and enhancing its color.
Though research into the hair growth effects of Indian gooseberry is limited, a 2020 study found that people with thinning hair experienced improvements in hair damage and loss after using a serum containing this active ingredient.
However, Indian gooseberry wasn’t the only ingredient used in the hair loss prevention serum, meaning it may not be responsible for all of its positive effects.
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Triphala is an ancient Ayurvedic treatment that’s become a popular herbal preparation for many ailments, as well as its potential health benefits for hair.
In-vitro studies have found that triphala contains several antioxidants, along with antifungal and antimicrobial properties, that can help keep your hair healthy and provide many benefits for hair care.
While there are some possible triphala hair benefits, more research on humans is needed to explore the full beauty benefits of triphala churna.
But just because triphala churna isn’t the one solution to your hair woes doesn’t mean there aren’t other tips for healthy hair growth.
Chronic health conditions and an unbalanced diet can also affect the normal cycle of hair growth.
Talking to your healthcare provider about any hair loss you’re experiencing can help narrow down the possible causes. From there, they can help figure out a hair loss treatment plan that’s right for you.
You can also learn more about what various supplements for hair loss can do for you.
Dr. Angela Sheddan has been a Family Nurse Practitioner since 2005, practicing in community, urgent and retail health capacities. She has also worked in an operational capacity as an educator for clinical operations for retail clinics.
She received her undergraduate degree from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, her master’s from the University of Tennessee Health Science Center in Memphis, and her Doctor of Nursing Practice from the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa. You can find Angela on LinkedIn for more information.