Last updated: August 10, 2021

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If you are looking for an herbal support for your mind and body, Haritaki is for you. The fruit of the haritaki tree has many uses in Ayurveda.

In our Haritaki Test 2021, we have taken an in-depth look at this medicinal plant. You will not only learn about the healing effects of the plant that have been proven, but also how it is related to traditional Indian medicine.




The most important facts

  • Haritaki is also called the queen of medicinal plants and the fruit of long life. It has been an integral part of Ayurveda since ancient times and is still used today.
  • It is said to have a variety of positive properties. Among other things, it has been scientifically proven that haritaki can help lower cholesterol and reduce weight.
  • To avoid the very specific taste of haritaki when ingested, the powder can be swallowed using capsules. However, usually the powder is dissolved in drinks or added to food.

The Best Haritaki: Our Picks

Buying and evaluation criteria for Haritaki products

Before buying Haritaki, you should have considered a few points. We have listed the most important ones below:

By considering these points, you are sure to find the right product of the right quality for you.

Cultivation

In order to contribute to a healthy and sustainable consumption of Haritaki, you can make sure to buy Haritaki products from controlled organic cultivation.

You can recognise this by the typical EU organic logo on the packaging - white stars in the shape of a leaf on a green background.

Only products from organic farming receive the quality and inspection seal. In order to be allowed to use such a seal, certain standards and requirements must be met.

Dosage

When buying capsules, you should always pay attention to the dosage indicated. Often only the contents of the capsule are given. Often the capsule shell is indicated separately and can lead to confusion.

In addition, the dosage is important for calculating the number of capsules to avoid exceeding the daily dose.

With low-dose capsules at a low price, it can also quickly be deceptive to have found a good offer. It is best to always compare the price per kilo or per hundred grams.

Quality certificates

When buying organic products, you can not only look for the EU organic seal, but also for other quality certificates such as the Soil Association or USDA certificate.

The Soil Association is an organisation founded in Great Britain that certifies food, cosmetics, clothing and textiles. The organic seal, which has existed since 1946, is one of the best known in Great Britain.

USDA stands for United States Department of Agriculture and is the US Department of Agriculture which, among other things, supports farmers and livestock breeders. The USDA also works to ensure food safety and protect natural resources.

Supplements

If you are a vegetarian or vegan, you should pay attention to the material from which the capsule shells are made.

You should always make sure that no other additives are added to the capsules or powder. It should be obtained exclusively from the haritaki plant and processed without any additional agents.

You should also take a closer look at the capsule shell. Sometimes hard gelatine capsules from cattle are used. There are enough vegetable alternatives to hard gelatine.

Guide: Questions you should ask yourself before buying Haritaki products

In order to better explain Haritaki to you, we have explained important and frequently asked questions in the following section.

What is Haritaki and how does it work?

The tree, which can grow up to 30 metres high, mainly grows in Asian regions such as Nepal, India, China, Bangladesh and Burma.

haritaki-test

The dried stone fruit of the haritaki tree is reminiscent of dates, but has nothing in common with them. (Image source: Amatus Sami Tahera / Pixabay)

The green, 2 - 4 cm large drupes are reminiscent of olives. They are dried and processed when ripe or semi-ripe.

Appetite stimulation

The regular intake of haritaki can, among other things, help to stimulate your appetite (1). This means that your feeling of hunger is inhibited and it can therefore be used as a weight loss aid.

In addition, triphala, of which haritaki is the main ingredient, has been shown to improve appetite (2). This can lead to a healthier understanding of one's food intake.

Digestion

Furthermore, Haritaki as a component of the remedy Triphala can contribute to a laxative effect. In addition, stomach acidity can be reduced (2). This can lead to improved digestion.

Due to the cleansing and purifying effect of Haritaki, you can free your intestinal walls from deposits. This can ensure a higher absorption of minerals and nutrients. Another factor is the proven lowering function of Haritaki on your cholesterol level (4).

Rejuvenation

Haritaki can lead to better sleep quality and thus contribute to rejuvenation (3). In addition, it can increase overall fitness and vitality. This can make you feel younger and more powerful.

Among other things, alcohol consumption, stress or even external circumstances cause the body to age faster.

This happens because free radicals form in your body. Triphala, which is composed of 3 ingredients, one of which is Haritaki, has an antioxidant effect and can therefore work against free radicals (2).

What side effects can Haritaki cause?

No side effects have been scientifically proven. Nevertheless, it is often advised not to take haritaki in the following cases:

  • Excessive/heavy alcohol consumption
  • Severe fatigue and/or emaciation
  • Dehydration
  • during pregnancy/breastfeeding

In addition, side effects ranging from temporary fatigue, diarrhoea and stomach pain to allergic reactions such as reddening of the skin, itching and rashes are sometimes described after taking Haritaki.

When does it make sense to take Haritaki?

In principle, you can take Haritaki regardless of the time of day. However, it is recommended to take it before going to bed. This avoids possible drowsiness and gives the body enough rest to process the remedy.

haritaki-test

Haritaki powder can be stirred into the morning smoothie to start the day fresh and invigorated. (Image source: Evita Ochel / Pixabay)

Haritaki can also be mixed into food, drunk in a smoothie in the morning or consumed as a tea. It's up to you. However, you should be aware of the very special taste when choosing how to consume it.

Where else is haritaki processed?

Haritaki is a big component of the final product Triphala. Triphala means "three fruits" in Sanskrit and has been an herbal remedy since ancient times. This is also listed in the Ayurvedic Pharmacopoeia of India (5).

It consists of the following three plant species (6):

  • Haritaki (Terminalia chebula)
  • Bibhitaki (Terminalia bellerica)
  • Amalaki (Emblica officinalis)

The combination of the three plant species is very commonly used to detoxify and purify the body. They are also called the king fruits of Ayurveda.

How much do Haritaki products cost?

There are price differences depending on the quality, quantity and type of product. In the following table, we have shown you the price ranges at a glance.

Product type price
Powder approx. 4.80 - 12 € / 100 g
Capsule approx. 12.50 - 35.30 € / 100 g

As you can see, capsules are generally a bit more expensive due to the additional labour and material costs. In addition, quality is a major factor in the pricing of both types of products.

How can Haritaki be taken?

You have two common ways to purchase Haritaki, but several ways to take it. Typically, you can buy Haritaki in the following variants:

  • Powder
  • Capsules

Both have their advantages and disadvantages, which we would like to briefly explain to you.

Powder

Anyone who reads up on haritaki will quickly stumble upon the taste. It is described as very special and takes some getting used to. Nevertheless, people often go for the powder.

Advantages
  • cheaper
  • daily dose can be adjusted individually
  • can be combined
Disadvantages
  • Taste
  • bad handling for on the go

Whether you buy haritaki in powder or capsule form also affects the price. Due to the reduced processing steps, the powder is generally cheaper to buy.

It is also easier to integrate into recipes. In this way, you can soften the taste of the powder, which takes some getting used to. The powder is ideal for mixing into smoothies or fruit drinks.

Nevertheless, the taste can stand out negatively.

In addition, you can approach your daily dose with the powder bit by bit. This helps to test your own tolerance of the medicinal plant.

The powder is not suitable for taking your daily dose of Haritaki on the go. You have to pack it separately or fill it into capsules yourself to be able to take it with water. Another option is to dissolve it in drinks and smoothies, as already mentioned.

Capsules

If you don't want to bother with the taste of Haritaki, you can easily get around this with the capsule version. This is quite tasteless and only dissolves in the stomach.

Advantages
  • Less tasty
  • good for on the go
Disadvantages
  • More expensive
  • unsuitable for people who have problems swallowing capsules/tablets
  • cannot be combined well

Due to the additional processing steps, capsules are fundamentally more expensive than the same amount of powder. It is also important to consider what material the capsule is made of.

Haritaki capsules are not suitable for processing with other foods. On the other hand, the capsules do not have their own taste, as the powder only dissolves in the stomach.

Did you know that Ayurveda distinguishes between six different flavours?

The taste of Haritaki is described as a mixture of sour, sweet, bitter, tart and hot. These are five of the six directions called rasa. Salt is the sixth direction. In Ayurveda, each direction has a different effect on a person's psyche and body.

Because of the capsule form, it is easier to take Haritaki on the go. These are made in ordinary capsule size and are easy to take with a sip of water.

However, people who have problems swallowing capsules or tablets should refrain and switch to powder.

How should Haritaki be dosed?

Depending on whether you want to take Haritaki as a powder or as capsules, there are different approaches.

Basically, it is important not to exceed a maximum daily dose of 5 grams.

It is highly advisable to approach the maximum daily dose slowly. In this way, you get your body used to regular intake and can quickly recognise side effects.

For powders, it is recommended to start with half a teaspoon or less. This way you can gradually approach the daily dose of about one level teaspoon. With the rule of thumb of one level teaspoon, you will find it easier than weighing it out again each time.

Depending on the dosage of the capsules, it is advisable to take 2 - 4 capsules per day. Here it is the same as with the powder - slowly approach the daily dose and do not exceed it.

What alternatives are there to Haritaki?

Triphala is very often listed as the only herbal alternative with these properties. As already mentioned, Haritaki is the basis for this product, which is why it is not a 100% alternative.

However, due to its composition, it may be tolerated differently. There are currently no pharmaceutical or herbal alternatives on the market that combine all the properties.

For this, one would have to put together individual products that can help as support and promotion of the following factors:

  • Weight loss (1, 2)
  • Detoxification and gastrointestinal tract cleansing (4, 7)
  • Immune system strengthening (1)
  • Cell renewal (2, 3)
  • Prevention of the ageing process (2, 3)
  • Stress reduction and promotion of inner peace (1)
  • Purification of the blood
  • Helping to eliminate deposits (4, 7)
  • Energising effect due to improved oxygen uptake in the blood
  • Lowering cholesterol levels (4)

As you can see, some positive side effects can occur with the help of taking Haritaki. Nevertheless, you should inform yourself well about this topic and consult your doctor before you start taking it.

Image source: 123rf / 104114203

References (7)

1. Peterson CT, Denniston K, Chopra D. Therapeutic Uses of Triphala in Ayurvedic Medicine. J Altern Complement Med. 2017;23(8):607-614. doi:10.1089/acm.2017.0083
Source

2. Baliga MS, Meera S, Mathai B, Rai MP, Pawar V, Palatty PL. Scientific validation of the ethnomedicinal properties of the Ayurvedic drug Triphala: a review. Chin J Integr Med. 2012;18(12):946-954. doi:10.1007/s11655-012-1299-x
Source

3. Ratha KK, Joshi GC. Haritaki (Chebulic myrobalan) and its varieties. Ayu. 2013;34(3):331-334. doi:10.4103/0974-8520.123139
Source

4. Maruthappan V, Shree KS. Hypolipidemic activity of haritaki (terminalia chebula) in atherogenic diet induced hyperlipidemic rats. J Adv Pharm Technol Res. 2010;1(2):229-235.
Source

5. Natsume Y. Yakushigaku Zasshi. 2015;50(1):46-63.
Source

6. Peterson CT, Denniston K, Chopra D. Therapeutic Uses of Triphala in Ayurvedic Medicine. J Altern Complement Med. 2017;23(8):607-614. doi:10.1089/acm.2017.0083
Source

7. Ramar Perumal Samy, Peter Natesan Pushparaj and Ponnampalam Gopalakrishnakone A compilation of Bioactive Compounds from Ayurveda 2008; 3(3): 100–110.
Source

Why you can trust me?

Wissenschaftlicher Artikel
Peterson CT, Denniston K, Chopra D. Therapeutic Uses of Triphala in Ayurvedic Medicine. J Altern Complement Med. 2017;23(8):607-614. doi:10.1089/acm.2017.0083
Go to source
Wissenschaftlicher Artikel
Baliga MS, Meera S, Mathai B, Rai MP, Pawar V, Palatty PL. Scientific validation of the ethnomedicinal properties of the Ayurvedic drug Triphala: a review. Chin J Integr Med. 2012;18(12):946-954. doi:10.1007/s11655-012-1299-x
Go to source
Wissenschaftlicher Artikel
Ratha KK, Joshi GC. Haritaki (Chebulic myrobalan) and its varieties. Ayu. 2013;34(3):331-334. doi:10.4103/0974-8520.123139
Go to source
Wissenschaftliche Studie
Maruthappan V, Shree KS. Hypolipidemic activity of haritaki (terminalia chebula) in atherogenic diet induced hyperlipidemic rats. J Adv Pharm Technol Res. 2010;1(2):229-235.
Go to source
Wissenschaftliche Studie
Natsume Y. Yakushigaku Zasshi. 2015;50(1):46-63.
Go to source
Wissenschaftlicher Artikel
Peterson CT, Denniston K, Chopra D. Therapeutic Uses of Triphala in Ayurvedic Medicine. J Altern Complement Med. 2017;23(8):607-614. doi:10.1089/acm.2017.0083
Go to source
Wissenschaftlicher Artikel
Ramar Perumal Samy, Peter Natesan Pushparaj and Ponnampalam Gopalakrishnakone A compilation of Bioactive Compounds from Ayurveda 2008; 3(3): 100–110.
Go to source
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