The bodily energy Tripa in Tibetan Medicine
The bodily energy Tripa (Bile humor) is responsible for the heat principle in the body. All fire aspects, meaning the fundamental thermodynamics, as well as the body`s nutrition and digestion, form its main area of activity. The main location of this bodily energy is between the navel and the heart.
Tripa is described as being:
- slightly oily,
- sharp/quickly acting,
- purgative and
The symptoms of excess Tripa is oily face, hair and body; fever and manifestation of infections (sharpness); the quality of lightness manifest as different stages of fever, which produce bad odour to the body, diarrhea and sweat.
Bile is sharp and hot by nature, therefore similar conditions aggravate it: excessive intake of pungent, sour and salty foods, alcohol, meat or fat; anger, pollution, exposure to heat, strenuous activities and physical injury.
The general functions of balanced Tripa are to help enhance hunger and thirst, to assist in digesting ingested food and metabolism, to generate body heat, to clear the complexion as well as to enhance courage and intelligence.
Five types of Tripa:
- Digestive Tripa is located between the digested and undigested site. It can be equated with the “digestive heat” and therefore is extremely important for maintaining a healthy body. It digests food, separates nutrient from the waste and generates body heat. It also assists in the proper functioning of the remaining four types of Tripa, and promotes their strength.
- Colour-transforming Tripa is located in the liver and transforms the colours of all the bodily constituents. Through it, the blood becomes red; the bile flow becomes yellow, etc.
- Accomplishing Tripa is located in the heart and induces courage, pride, intelligence, and willpower, therefore providing the necessary powers of assertion and self-confidence in achieving the corresponding wishes and goals. In the negative sense, however, this can develop into an overestimation of one`s own abilities and pride.
- Visual Tripa is located in the eyes and enables one to perceive forms.
- Complexion-clearing Tripa is located in the skin and is responsible for good and lustrous complexion of the skin and its elasticity.
General signs and symptoms of Tripa disorders:
- Pulse: thin, tight, with rapid beat
- Urine: yellow-reddish, with strong smell and small bubbles that disappear quickly
- Tongue: covered with thick yellow coat
- Eyes: yellow/red sclera
- Pain: fixed pain anywhere in the body, particularly in the head, around eyes, and chest
- Skin: become yellow or red, dry or oily, itchy and temperature is increased
- Mouth: bitter taste in mouth, thirst
- Other: insomnia, apathy, anger, sensation of heat in the body, nausea
If intake of yogurt, cold water, meat of wild animals, foods that have cool qualities improve conditions; and the intake of warm, rick and nutritious food like meat, butter, alcohol or any other pungent, sour or oily food worsen condition, indicates that disorder is caused by Tripa.
Lifestyle and diet:
The patient should avoid exposure to any kind of heat (sun, fire), strenuous physical activity and strong emotions like anger. One should stay in cooling and pleasant place, take cool showers and wash the face and the head only with cool water.
One should eat in calm atmosphere without hurry; drink plenty of water, eat raw vegetable or fruit salads. One should avoid fat and oily food. Vegetable oil is preferable to animal. Avoid alcohol, especially strong liquor, hot spices, ginger, mustard, radish, hot peppers, vinegar, yeast products and coffee.