Is Trikatu an ayurvedic formulation effective for the management of flu-like illness? A narrative review

J Complement Integr Med. 2021 May 24;19(2):193-202. doi: 10.1515/jcim-2020-0485. eCollection 2022 Jun 1.


Objectives: The aim of this review is to summarise and appraise the findings of various studies on Trikatu.

Content: COVID-19 or SARS-CoV-2 disease a pandemic principally contaminating the respiratory tract and bringing about Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome is liable for significant mortality around the world. Far-fetched, there is no exact treatment accessible till today. Consequently, it is critical to discover the alternative methodology which can decrease the weight of illness. Trikatu powder recommended by authorities for the management of mild cases of COVID-19 is a conventional ayurvedic formulation containing three spices; Zingiber officinale, Piper nigrum, and Piper longum. A comprehensive search of the articles published since inception to 01/08/2020 on Trikatu was carried out. Major electronic medical databases such as Pub Med/MEDLINE and Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews were used for the literature search.

Summary: A total of 21 records were identified by electronic searches between since inception to 01/08/2020 of which 13 records were included for review. The reviewed articles highlight Trikatu as a safe, anti-inflammatory, and immune-modulatory property by suppression of the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines TNF-a, IL-1b, IL-6, IL-17, alteration in levels of circulating immune complexes, anti-dyslipidaemia agent by reduced triglycerides and LDL cholesterol and increased HDL cholesterol, enhancing bio-availability of co-drug by reducing the elimination half-life (t1/2β) and zero time intercept of the elimination phase.

Outlook: The findings of this review seem to show Trikatu as a potential anti-inflammatory, anti-dyslipidaemia, and immune-modulatory ayurvedic formulation can be used for combating flu like illnesses and also in the management of COVID-19 as an adjuvant. However, rigorous double blind randomized controlled trials with larger sample size are warranted for better validation in such clinical conditions.

Keywords: COVID-19; Trikatu; anti-inflammatory; anti-viral; ayurvedic formulations; flu-like illness; immunomodulation.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Alkenes
  • COVID-19 Drug Treatment*
  • Humans
  • Piperidines
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • Systematic Reviews as Topic


  • Alkenes
  • Piperidines
  • trikatu