By Caitlin Rose
200hr E-RYT & Ayurvedic Counselor
Trikatu is a classic Ayurvedic herbal formulation that translates to, “three spices.” It is a warming blend of pungent spices that help to increase the Agni (our ability to digest) and reduce Kapha dosha. It is a powerful blend that effects the rejuvenation of the respiratory system, immune system and digestive system. It is comprised of three herbs; black pepper, long pepper and ginger.
Individual Benefits of Herbs:
Black Pepper: Black Pepper has both cleansing and antioxidant properties, it is also a bioavailability enhancer — it helps transport the benefits of other herbs to different parts of the body. Black pepper helps enhance the flow of oxygen to the brain, as well as enhance digestion and circulation. Black pepper is a warming spice and contributes the pungent taste. It is excellent for pacifying Kapha and helping to rejuvenate the respiratory system due to its drying qualities.
Ginger: Ginger is a universal medicine that is irreplaceable in nature, as well as in the kitchen. It is a digestive aid that also aids in the elimination of natural toxins in the body by liquifying ama (toxic build up). Ginger has a warming effect on the body, helping to reduce excess kapha and vata. It supports healthy circulation, regulates blood pressure and promotes cleansing. Ginger helps to support healthy lungs and comfortable breathing, removing mucus from the upper chest.
Long Pepper: Long Pepper, also known as Pippali, helps similar to black pepper, but more heating. It stimulates the metabolism and the production of the digestive enzymes, enhancing our ability to digest and assimilate nutrients, as well as burn and release toxins. It is helpful in maintaining an ideal respiratory system, supporting and clearing the lungs for comfortable breathing. Long pepper helps to pacify excess Kapha dosha.
Benefits of Trikatu:
Seasonal Allergies: According to Ayurveda, typical allergy symptoms, including runny nose, sinus congestion, cough and sneezing are symptoms of a Kapha dosha imbalance. Another way of looking at this is the lymphatic fluids backing up and not properly eliminating the accumulation of toxins that may be occurring due to an impaired Agni, or ability to digest. While there is a proven genetic factor working against those with seasonal allergies, working to nurture the lymphatic system with daily movement, dry out the respiratory system with a diet that has increased pungent qualities and rest will make a impact on their seasonal suffering. Trikatu’s blend of spices will both help to reduce the amount of phlegm or congestion that an individual is experiencing, which will help aid in removing accumulated toxins while enhancing ones ability to digest, ultimately increasing the immunity to fight off common seasonal allergens.
Immune Support: Our immune system is highly dependent on our digestive system. When we have excess kapha dosha, our ability to digest and metabolism the food that we consume is hindered. When our metabolism is hindered from excess kapha dosha, the food that we consume does not get broken down and eliminated properly, causing it to linger in our small intestine and become toxic. These toxins then leak into our body where they are consumed by lymph, and ideally taken to the lymph nodes for cleansing. Unfortunately, the presence of excess kapha dosha means that this lymph is not making it to the lymph nodes for cleansing. This results in the excess toxins lingering in our bodies and weakening our immune system. By Trikatu reducing the excess kapha, lymph and undigested food in our GI tract, we increase our ability to fight disease, enhancing our immunity.
Digestive Aid: As briefly mentioned, Trikatu’s powerful blend of three pungent herbs is an instant kickstart to the metabolism. Adding these herbs into ones diet, signals the digestive organs to produce specific digestive enzymes. When we have sufficient, relevant digestive enzymes present during our digestive process we are able to properly discern between assimilation and elimination of nutrients. This is the key to a healthy mind and body.