Is ashwagandha a part of your health routine yet? An ancient staple of Ayurveda – the Indian system of medicine, ashwagandha delivers a full spectrum of surprisingly modern benefits. Long revered and utilized by herbalists, this herb is now going mainstream and finding its way into many nutritional supplements too. Read on to learn all you need to know about the king of Ayurvedic herbs!
What is Ashwagandha?
Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera) is a traditional rasayana remedy of Ayurveda, a term used to describe longevity tonics or herbs that promote well-being, balanced energy levels, and overall good health. Ashwagandha is considered the king of herbs where shatavari is the queen. A member of the Solanaceae or nightshade family, ashwagandha is also commonly called winter cherry or Indian ginseng, though it is not a true botanical member of the ginseng family.
Choosing the Right Ashwagandha Extract for Your Needs
As any health practitioner knows, selecting the right extraction process for your vitamin, mineral, and herbal supplements is where real results happen. When it comes to ashwagandha, here is what to look for:
- Choose an ashwagandha root extract. The root brings many therapeutic benefits, such as anti-oxidative, anti-stress, anti-genotoxic, and immunomodulating properties.
- Ashwagandha leaf extract is currently being investigated in both aqueous and alcoholic solutions for issues ranging from lead toxicity to cancer. Traditionally, it has been used for fever and swelling.
- Standard ashwagandha preparations call for the root extracts. Find them in capsules or liquid extract form.
Some of ashwagandha’s biologically active chemical constituents include alkaloids, withanolides, and saponins.
Looking for a full-spectrum extract of ashwagandha?
CanPrev’s Adrenal Chill features KSM-66® – the highest concentration full-spectrum extract of ashwagandha. The uniqueness of this specific extract is that all the constituents of the herb are captured in their natural proportions, resembling the herb in its original state. Formulated especially for women, Adrenal Chill is clinically proven to reduce cortisol, stress and anxiety, support immune functions, as well as mind-boosting and sexual-enhancing effects.
- Tonic for overall wellbeing
- Supports the nervous system
- Balances sleep / wake cycles and enhances quality of sleep
- Adaptogenic benefits
- Immuno-modulatory effects
- Anti-inflammatory properties
- Aphrodisiac and stamina building
What is an Adaptogen?
A term coined in the 1940s, adaptogen herbs have a history of use that goes back to Ayurvedic and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). Modern studies show adaptogens can enhance resistance and resilience of the human body in a non-specific way and under a wide range of conditions – be it physical stress from pollution or illness, or mental stress from life events and such. Adaptogens support homeostasis via the immune-neuro-endocrine system and the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis.
Ashwagandha root meets the criteria required to earn its adaptogen status:
- Non-specific action to assist the body in a wide range of conditions
- Maintains homeostasis and offsets disorders caused by stress responses
- Safe and does not cause stress to the body, even in large doses and over long periods
In other words, adaptogens act as resilience builders, and bring balance and harmony to many bodily systems. Curious about more of ashwagandha’s benefits?
Beneficial for Cognitive Health
If you want to boost concentration, focus and cognitive ability, ashwagandha may be the herb for you.
A 2017 randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study showed marked enhancement in immediate and general memory as well as attention ability and information processing speed after eight weeks of ashwagandha root use, with a dosage of 300mg twice daily.
Beneficial for Stress & Anxiety
Adaptogenic herbs like ashwagandha root have a marked beneficial effect on stress levels.
In a recent randomized double-blind, placebo-controlled study on the effect of ashwagandha root extract in stressed-out adults, researchers noted a substantial drop in serum cortisol levels after two months of treatment, along with healthier scores on stress parameters across the board. The dosage was 300mg of the root extract, taken twice daily.
Beneficial for Weight Management
The stress-busting effects of ashwagandha make the herb a primed ally for weight management.
Individuals under chronic stress (which is basically everybody in our modern, high-speed world) often put on the pounds from cravings for convenient foods, excessive caloric intake, sedentary lifestyles, and inflammation. But ashwagandha can help!
In a 2016 double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled trial, ashwagandha root extract was shown to effectively lower serum cortisol levels along with promoting a statistically significant reduction in body weight and body mass index after only weight weeks of treatment. Dosage was 300mg taken twice daily.
Beneficial for Sexual Health
Clinical studies, as well as the personal, intimate experience of countless folks confirms ashwagandha’s traditional use for libido and sexual health overall. This can be partly attributed to this herb’s effect on stress and anxiety, which are notable libido crushers!
Ashwagandha has been shown to support testosterone levels. In men, this herb may improve low sperm count and motility for men, while also supporting women experiencing female sexual dysfunction (FSD).
Beneficial for Thyroid Health
Recent numbers indicate, as many as 1 in 10 Canadians suffers from a thyroid condition, most notably low thyroid function.
Try ashwagandha! Serum TSH, T3 and T4 levels have been significantly improved compared to placebo in a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study on ashwagandha root extract. Some experts believe this has to do with the herb’s liver protective benefits.
Are you ready to enjoy some of ashwagandha’s health benefits for yourself?
(Blog courtesy of https://canprev.ca/)