Ashwagandha is famous for its outstanding healing properties. It has grown in the Middle East and India for thousands of years. Some people refer to it as Indian ginseng due to the similar benefits it has.
It increases strength, energy, relieves chronic stress, it’s a powerful anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant and has anti-tumor properties. The uses of Ashwagandha have been the subject of many clinical studies.
Benefits of Ashwagandha
Reduced Stress and Increased Endurance
Ashwagandha helps to reduce stress and increase endurance. Making it popular for use by athletes who turn to it as a performance enhancer. As an adaptogen, it also prevents stress-induced exhaustion.
Fights Depression and Mood Swings
Ashwagandha is an antidepressant and is used to treat mood swings. As an adaptogen, it has a powerful mood enhancing effect that works as an antidepressant action. It also enhances the effectiveness of nor-epinephrine, a brain chemical which stabilizes your mood and reduces depression.
Eases Arthritis Pain
Ashwagandha is effective in relieving inflammation and pain associated with arthritis. It prevents disability caused by pain and inflammation.
Act as an antioxidant:
Ashwagandha is used as an antioxidant to decrease the action of harmful free radicals as it is a potent antioxidant. It enhances natural antioxidants like catalase superoxide dismutase and glutathione peroxidase.
Ashwagandha has an anticancer property as it induces apoptosis of renal carcinoma and inhibits the growth of new blood vessels (angiogenesis). It reduces the growth of tumors as it has anti-proliferative activity in colon, lungs, breast cells and central nervous system.
Boosts Thyroid Function
Ashwagandha is used in the treatment of underactive thyroid gland by stimulating its activity.
Enhance Immune Function
Ashwagandha is a herb that increases the amount of platelets and white blood cells in circulation. It enhances immune function against free radicals.
Boost sexual performance
Ashwagandha improves sexual performance as it enhances hormones of both men and women.
Treat dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease
Ashwagandha improves brain functioning by improving memory deficits, neuronal growth, restore brain function and rebuilt lost connections of brain cells. So it is used in the treatment of degenerative brain disorders and memory loss like Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. So it prevents physical disability by improving memory and brain function.
Ashwagandha is used to relieve anxiety as it is a potent anti-anxiety and reduces feelings of anxiety. A very small dose of this herb gives a relaxing effect. Reference this study published in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine which assessed existing reports of human trials using ashwagandha to treat anxiety.
Ashwagandha has an antibacterial activity against many bacteria.
Ashwagandha has diuretic effect and lowers down the cholesterol and blood sugar level.
As ashwagandha herb has a cholesterol lowering agent, so it acts as cardioprotective agent and prevents myocardial injury.
Ashwagandha Side Effects
As an adaptogen, Ashwagandha sometimes causes excessive energy as well as sometimes causes mild sedation by enhancing the effect of nor-epinephrine in the brain.
Gastrointestinal disturbance like diarrhea, mild stomach upset and mouth irritation is a common side effect associated with ashwagandha.
If you are taking Ashwagandha supplements then, it can alter the test results of thyroid functioning test.
A great way to prevent negative efects from any herb like Ashwagandha is to combine it with a harmonizer like Shilajit to balance out the effect and amplify it’s effectiveness.
You should better talk to your physician before taking ashwagandha with other supplements having sedative properties as it intensifies its effects.