Kansa Haritaki: Uses, Dose, Ingredients, Side Effects

Article by Dr Raghuram Y.S. MD (Ay)
There are many effective Ayurvedic formulations which combat swelling and inflammation. Kams Haritaki is one such unparalleled and highly effective compound used in the treatment of Shotha or swelling (oedema) and or inflammation. Along with many effective disease modifying herbs, Haritaki or Terminalia chebula is the chief ingredient of the compound.

We know that Haritaki is one of the best Rasayanas (immune modulator, anti ageing, health promoting, and rejuvenation medicine). Thus Haritaki not only has a curative role in many diseases, but also has a major role in preventing many diseases from occurring.

Its efficacy in regularizing and rectifying metabolic errors and also as a best laxative helps in clearing and flushing off the unwanted kleda (moisture or water collection) in the cells which is the chief cause of external and internal swelling.

Kamsa Hareetaki –
The word Kamsa Haritaki is made up of 2 terms –
Kamsa – is a term which denotes the quantity of the herbs taken. 1 Kamsa is the total quantity of all the herbs taken together in the formulation. 1 Kamsa is said to be approximately equal to 3.072 kg.
Haritaki – means Terminalia chebula. Since Haritaki is the main ingredient of the composition, its name has been specified in the name of the medicine.

Thus Kamsa Haritaki is a formulation wherein Haritaki is used as the chief ingredient and all the other herbs put together sum up to 1 Kamsa quantity.

Indications and benefits of Kamsa Hareetaki:
Kansa Haritaki effectively alleviates the below said conditions:
Pravrudda Shvayathu: Widespread oedema / anasarca
Kasa – Cough
Jwara – Fever
Aruchi – Anorexia
Meha – Diabetes Mellitus, Urinary Disorders
Gulma – Abdominal tumors
Pleeha – Splenomegaly
Tridosha – Disorders caused due to aggravation of all the Doshas
Udara – Abdominal Disorders, Ascitis
Pandu Roga – Anaemia
Krushata – Emaciation, Debilitating disorders, Consumption
Amavata – Rheumatoid Arthritis
Raktapitta – Bleeding disorders, Phthisis
Amlapitta – Gastritis, GERD
Vivarnata – Discolouration
Mutradosha – Contamination (infection) of Urine
Vatadosha – Vitiation of Vayu
Shukradosha – Contamination of Semen, Sperm

Ingredients of Kans Haritaki –
It is an unparalleled herbal compound prescribed for relief from Oedema, Swelling, Anaemia and many other health conditions.

It is a herbal laxative useful in these conditions for elimination of metabolic wastes and accumulations, cleanse the channels and pathways of body and detoxify the system. Thus it relieves many diseases. Haritaki or Terminalia chebula is the chief ingredient of this formulation.

द्वि पञ्च मूलस्य पचेत् कषाये कंसे अभयानां च शतं गुडात् च।
लेहे सुसिद्धे च विनीय चूर्णं व्योष त्रि सौगन्ध्यं उपस्थिते॥
प्रस्थ अर्ध मात्रं मधुनः सु शीते किञ्चित् च चूर्णात् अपि याव शूकात्।
एकाभ्यां प्राश्य ततः च लेहात् शुक्तिः निहन्ति श्वयथुं प्रवृद्धम्॥
कास ज्वर अरोचक मेह गुल्म प्लीह त्रिदोष उदर पाण्डु रोगान्।
कार्श्य आमवातान् असृक् अम्लपित्त वैवर्ण्य मूत्र अनिल शुक्र दोषान्॥
दशमूलं हरीतक्या तुल्यं कंस हरीतकी।
मानं तेन अत्र तत्रस्थं चरके प्राह जज्जटः॥(यो.र.शोथ.चिकित्सा)
Dwi pancha moolasya pachet kashaaye kamse abhayaanaam cha shatam gudaat cha
Lehe susiddhe cha vineeya choornam vyosha tri saugandhyam upasthite
Prastha ardha maatram madhunaha su sheete kinchit cha choornaat api yaava shookaat
Ekaabhyaam praashya tataha cha lehaat shuktihi nihanti shvayathum pravruddham
Kasa jwara arochaka meha gulma pleeha tridosha udara paandu rogaan
Kaarshya aamavaatan asruk amlapitta vaivarnya mootra anila shukra doshaan
Dashamoolam hareetakyaa tulyam kamsa hareetaki
Maanam tena atra tatrastham charake praahaha jajjataha (Ref – Yoga Ratnakara Shotha Chikitsa)
Below mentioned are the ingredients of Kamsa Haritaki –
Dwi-Panchamoola / Dashamula / Dashamoola (10 roots – mentioned below): Each is taken in equal proportion and the total quantity should sum up to 1 Adhaka (4kg appr) quantity.
Bilwa – Aegle marmelos
Agnimantha – Clerodendrum phlomidis / Premna mucronata (obtusifolia)
Shyonaka – Oroxylum indicum
Patala – Stereospermum suaveolens
Gambhari – Gmelina arborea
Shalaparni – Desmodium gangeticum
Prishniparni – Uraria picta
Brihati – Solanum indicum
Kantakari – Solanum surattense / Solanum xanthocarpum
Gokshura – Tribulus terrestris
Jala: Water – 1 Drona quantity (1024 tola) – 12288ml
Haritaki – Fully ripened fruits of Terminalia chebula – 1000 number
Purana Guda – Old Jaggery – 100 pala (4800 grams appr)
Trikatu – 1 pala each (48 grams each):
Pippali – Piper longum
Maricha – Piper nigrum
Shunti – Zingiber officinale
Trijata – 1 karsha each (12 grams each):
Twak – Cinnamomum zeylanicum (Cinnamon)
Ela – Elettaria cardamomum (Cardamom)
Patra – Cinnamomum tamala
Yava Kshara – 1 karsha (12 gram) – Potassium carbonate (alkali prepared with barley – Hordeum vulgare)
Madhu – Honey – ½ Prastha (500 gram) quantities

Method of Preparation:
Dashamoola / Dashamula (10 roots) are taken in the said proportion and processed (boiled on moderate flame) in 1 drona of water
When ¼ of the taken quantity of water remains the Dashamoola Kashaya is prepared (Decoction of Dashamoola)
The Kashaya is filtered
To the filtered Kashaya the fruits of Haritaki (Terminalia chebula) – 100 numbers and Old Jaggery in 100pala quantity is added and further processed on fire till the contents attain the form of lehya (confection, jam)
To this herbal jam fine powders of Trikatu, Trijata and Yava Kshara in mentioned proportions are added and mixed thoroughly
The contents are allowed to cool
To this, Honey in mentioned proportion is added and mixed properly
The resultant formulation is called Kamsa Haritaki
The compound is stored in air tight containers

1 fruit of Haritaki (Terminalia chebula) should be taken per day followed by Leha (jam) in a dose of Shukti Pramana (1/2 pala) – 24 grams
According to Acharya Jejjata the dosage is same as Dashamoola Haritaki

Speciality and probable mode of action of Kamsa Haritaki –
Kamsa Haritaki has bulk of 2 ingredients i.e. Dashamula (10 roots) which is basically a compound by itself and Haritaki (Terminalia chebula).

Though the whole formulation is effective in the above said conditions, the medicine basically works on the strength and potency of these prime herbs included in it.

Kamsa Haritaki is prepared using – Dashamula, Haritaki, Trikatu, Trijata, Yava Kshara, Guda and honey.

Dashamula is known for its anti-inflammatory property. Thus Dashamula alone cures oedema, swellings and inflammation.

Along with Trikatu, Dashamula acts in tackling Agnimandhya or sluggish digestion (errors of metabolism) and kindles the fire. Indigestion is the chief cause for the formation of many diseases. When indigestion and metabolic errors are tackled in a proper way, the above said diseases are not manifested.

Indigestion causes ama or improperly processed essence of digestion which due to its sticky nature clogs the channels of the body leading to many disease processes. Dashamula and Trikatu relieves these blocks and cleanses these channels by setting the metabolism into rhythm.

Haritaki also relieves the micro-blocks and helps to flush the body toxins.

Dashamula, Haritaki and Guda are highly effective in clearing the fluid accumulation from the cells and hence reduce the oedema and swelling caused due to inflammation. They are all best in tackling and alleviating morbid Vata. When Vata is controlled all the functions of the body will come to normalcy.

This formulation should be readily prescribed wherever there is excessive accumulation and stagnation of unwanted materials including water content in various cells, tissues and organs.

Though this formulation alleviates all the 3 doshas, it predominantly tackles Vata Kapha morbidity. Pitta causes inflammatory swelling, Kapha and Vata cause oedematous swelling, when only Vata is involved it will cause distension. Kamsa Haritaki can be skilfully used in either of these conditions.

In conditions like ascitis, inflammatory lung conditions, swelling related to anaemia (kapha type), urine contamination, diabetes and arthritis wherein there is mild to moderate or even severe fluid retention, Kamsa Haritaki should be prescribed for flushing the stagnated materials. Thus Kamsa Haritaki is useful as a laxative in these conditions.

By expelling morbid Vata and Kapha, enabling the cells to clear the fluid Kamsa Haritaki cures the oedematous swelling and relieves the pressure created by the fluids on the cells and organs. With this the symptoms of the mentioned diseases will be relieved.

The composition also acts on morbid pitta and cures fever, bleeding disorders and acidity.

Seeing the indications, Kamsa Haritaki seems to have a very good role in correcting the liver and spleen disorders. By removing the blocks occurring in these vital organs, the medicine rectifies the core metabolism and free release of pitta which helps in digestion and also in formation and maturation of blood.

This established effective haemopoesis, quality and quantity of circulating blood and establishment of health and immunity. The compound is also an effective blood cleanser. Thus it is useful in tackling the diseases caused by contaminated blood.

Basically in any disease, Kamsa Haritaki renders its prime action by rectifying and setting right the metabolic errors and by acting like an effective purgative, flushing off the excreta, contaminants, morbid doshas and tissue toxins. Thus it is a useful remedy for Pandu, pleeha, raktapitta, vivarnata and amlapitta.

Dashamula, Trijata and Haritaki are all best Rasayanas (immune modulator, anti ageing, health promoting, and rejuvenation medicine). Thus they also help in preventing the recurrences of the mentioned diseases. Being the best reliever of morbid Vata, the formulation takes control on the diseases like Gulma, Krushata and Shukradosha.

Jaggery – enhances the palatability of the medicine, just like Trijata. But Jaggery is not only with the purpose of giving a good taste to the formulation, it has very good medicinal properties.

It is an excellent remedy for Kapha-vata disorders. The old jaggery is said to have the properties of Rasayana (anti-ageing, rejuvenation, immunity enhancing, good for body channels and tissues, disease modifying properties).

Old jaggery combats morbid Pitta and Vayu, enhances taste, good for heart, alleviates the morbidity caused by all the 3 doshas, antipyretic, good remedy for the urinary disorders and disorders related to large intestine (corrects mechanism of errors of stool formation and excretion), good laxative, enhances metabolism and corrects errors of digestion, light to digest, is a wholesome food and relieves tiredness and fatigue.

Apart from all these properties, Guda is an excellent remedy for Pandu roga (anaemia) and Prameha (urinary disorders, diabetes).

Many of these conditions are mentioned as indications for the use of Kamsa Haritaki.

Yava kshara is deep penetrating and enhances the digestion capacity. It is the best in destroying the morbid kapha, ama and vata. Thus kshara too helps in removing the blocks caused by these morbid elements in the body.

Guda and Yava Kshara form the best combination of alkalis in the formulation. They keep the pitta under control and hence buffer the acidic activities of pitta. Since pitta chiefly causes inflammatory swelling, Yava kshara and guda helps in relieving inflammation.

Honey alleviates tridoshas. Honey and guda enhance the taste of the formulation and binds the ingredients. Honey is the best to destroy Kapha which is usually involved in the causation of swelling and oedema.

Caution –
Kamsa Haritaki has large quantities of Haritaki and in large doses can cause severe purgation. The dose of Kamsa Haritaki should be properly monitored and it should be taken under medical supervision.

It should be avoided in pregnant women, lactating mothers, kids and old aged people.

Many diseases mentioned above in the indications for Kamsa Haritaki often have a complicated picture. They may be secondary to some serious systemic disorder and might just not be a symptom. Therefore a thorough diagnosis in an Ayurvedic way from an Ayurvedic doctor is essential before starting the medicine.

Just before finishing –
Kamsa Haritaki is one of the best remedies in treating swelling and inflammation. It is also a good medicine and works as a Rasayana in Kasa, Pandu, Amlapitta etc conditions.

It is used as a remedy and also as a preventive option. It can also be easily prepared. But it may ot be the single best option in these diseases.

Other disease modifying medicines and or treatment, lifestyle and diet advices may be needed for obtaining the best results in terms of relief from a disease. Self preparation of medicines and usage are always dangerous.

They might work in diseases of small magnitude but are not worth trying and risking when the disease process is a complicated one, stubborn and chronic one and presents with troublesome symptoms.

Just find a good Ayurvedic doctor in your neighbourhood. He or she will take care of you and your health in a better way.
Click to Consult Dr Raghuram Y.S. MD (Ayu)

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