Harad: Benefits, Uses, Side Effects, How to Consume & More

Reviewed by experts

Harad (Haritaki)

When it comes to exploring natural remedies for health concerns, the world of traditional medicine never fails to intrigue. One such herbal gem that has garnered attention for its potential health benefits is Harad, also known as Terminalia chebula. This small yet mighty fruit has been used for centuries in Ayurvedic and traditional medicine practices. Harad offers a wide range of therapeutic properties.

In this article, we will delve into Harad’s benefits, uses, potential side effects, and proper consumption methods. We also shed light on its rich medicinal heritage and modern-day applications. So, let’s discover the wonders of Harad and unlock its secrets for optimal well-being.

What is Harad?

Harad is a fruit that grows on the Terminalia chebula tree. This small, deciduous tree belongs to the Combretaceae family and is highly regarded in Ayurveda. Harad has a unique appearance with a round shape, greenish-yellow color when unripe, and a dark yellow to black hue when fully ripe.

It has a slightly sour taste, which is why people often refer it to as the “King of Medicines” in Ayurveda due to its numerous medicinal properties. The fruit gets harvested when ripe and dried further to enhance its therapeutic potential. It is available in various forms, including whole fruit, powdered form, capsules, and extracts, making it convenient for different medicinal applications.

What are the health benefits of Harad?

Let’s explore some of the remarkable ways in which Harad can positively impact your well-being:

  1. Anti-diabetic

Harad has shown promising anti-diabetic properties by helping regulate blood sugar levels. It is a potential natural remedy for managing diabetes. [1]

2. Anti-inflammatory

The bioactive compounds present in Harad possess potent anti-inflammatory properties. This makes it a valuable herb in addressing inflammatory conditions like joint pain. [1]

Harad helps to manage the symptoms of arthritis

3. Antibacterial

Harad exhibits strong antibacterial properties, making it effective against bacterial infections. It may help combat harmful bacteria and promote a healthy immune system. [1]

4. Improves digestion

Harad finds traditional use as a digestive tonic. It may aid in stimulating the digestive system, relieving constipation, reducing bloating, and improving overall digestive function. [1]

5. Improves skin tone

Harad can have a positive impact on skin health. It contains antioxidants that safeguard the skin from oxidative stress, promoting a youthful and radiant complexion. [1]

6. Treats anemia

Harad is a rich source of iron, which promotes the production of red blood cells. Regular consumption of Harad may help alleviate symptoms of anemia. [1]

What are the uses of Harad?

Let’s explore how Harad finds is beneficial through its therapeutic properties:

  • Laxative

Harad is well-known for its laxative effects, which can help promote regular bowel movements. Its natural compounds stimulate the digestive system and aid in easing gastrointestinal discomfort. [1]

  • Antifungal

The potent antifungal properties of Harad make it a valuable resource in combating fungal infections. [1]

  • Increases longevity

The extract of Harad can be an exceptional heart tonic, supporting cardiovascular health and enhancing longevity. [1]

harad for heart health

  • Treating piles

Harad finds use for the treatment of piles, also known as hemorrhoids. Its anti-inflammatory and astringent properties can help reduce swelling, alleviate pain, and promote healing in this common condition. [1]

  • Relieves asthma

Harad has been utilized in Ayurveda for managing respiratory conditions like asthma. Its bronchodilatory properties may help relax the airways, improve breathing, and reduce asthma symptoms. [1]

How to consume Harad?

Here are some common ways to incorporate Harad into your daily routine:

  • Whole fruit

You can consume the dried whole fruit of Harad directly. Start by removing the seeds and chewing on the fruit, allowing the juices to mix with saliva for better digestion. This traditional method allows for a slow release of its therapeutic compounds.

  • Powdered form

Harad powder is widely available, making it easy to incorporate into various recipes and beverages.

  • Capsules

Harad is also available in capsule form, which offers a convenient and standardized dosage. Follow the recommended dosage or contact a healthcare professional for guidance.

  • Extracts

Harad extracts are another option. These concentrated forms can be added to water or other liquids as directed. Again, remember to follow the recommended dosage provided by the manufacturer or seek advice from a healthcare professional.

What are the side effects of Harad?

It is crucial to exercise caution and use Harad responsibly. Start moderately and check how your body reacts before gradually increasing the amount if necessary. If you experience side effects, it’s essential to seek medical advice promptly.

Remember, individual reactions to herbal remedies can vary, and it’s always wise to consult with a healthcare professional or an Ayurvedic practitioner who can provide personalized advice based on your specific health needs, medical history, and potential drug interactions.

Ayurveda and Harad

Harad plays a vital role in Ayurveda, where practitioners believe it to balance the three doshas – Vata, Pitta, and Kapha. When consumed with ghee, it helps balance Vata dosha.

Combining Harad with rock salt helps balance Kapha dosha, which is related to water and stability. Harad is recommended with sugar to balance Pitta dosha, associated with fire and metabolism. By harmonizing the doshas, Harad ignites the internal fire in the body, promoting a sense of vitality and energy. [1]


1.Can we eat Harad daily?

Yes, you can consume Harad daily. However, following recommended dosages and consulting with a healthcare professional is vital to ensure they suit your health needs.

2. How do you eat Harad?

You can consume Harad in various ways. For example, you can chew it directly after removing the seeds, drink it in powdered form mixed with beverages or food, take it in capsule form, or use it as an extract. The choice of consumption method depends on personal preference and the specific form of Harad available.

3. Harad benefits for skin

Harad offers several benefits for the skin. It contains antioxidants that guard the skin from oxidative damage, promoting a youthful appearance. It may also have a toning effect on the skin, reducing blemishes and improving overall skin tone.

4. Is Harad the same as Haritaki?

Yes, Harad and Haritaki refer to the same plant, Terminalia chebula. They are different names for the same botanical species and are used interchangeably in traditional medicine systems.


Harad is a remarkable herbal remedy with a long-standing reputation in traditional medicine. Its extensive list of benefits, ranging from its anti-diabetic and anti-inflammatory properties to its positive effects on digestion and skin health, make it a valuable addition to natural healthcare practices.

Consulting a healthcare professional is crucial to ensure personalized guidance and address any specific health concerns. So, embrace the wonders of Harad and unlock its secrets for optimal well-being.

The information provided here is not intended to replace professional advice or treatment.


  1. Health Benefits of Terminalia Chebula and Rosa Canina. 05 February 2019