Ashwagandha is an ancient herb from India used in Ayurvedic medicinal practices. It’s been in use for nearly 3,000 years. Practitioners use the root and leaves of the plant to create the encapsulated products we see today.
This ancient herb has a host of health benefits. It promotes healthy vitality, longevity, and brain function. Before we jump into the uses of this herb, check out these ashwagandha fun facts:
- When translated, it means “smell of the horse”
- It’s also known as Indian ginseng and winter cherry
- It’s known to reduce tumor growth in humans and animals
- Promotes Body Relaxation
Ashwagandha falls under the adaptogen category of natural medicine. These herbs are known for helping the body regulate stress and manage it effectively. When taken orally, the body immediately feels a calming effect that combats stress, anxiety, and panic attacks.
- Reduces Your Risk of Cancer
A recent study tested the correlation between cancer growth and ashwagandha in animals. They found that when the animals orally ingested this herb, their body went into a state of apoptosis. Cancer cells were immediately destroyed, thus blocking their ability to grow. Scientists believe that humans can reap the same benefits if they implement ashwagandha in their routine.
- Assists With Mood Regulation
Researchers gave 64 adults who struggled with stress and depression 600 mg of ashwagandha over two months. Nearly 80% of the participants reported a decrease in anxiety and depression. In addition, this herb has been found to decrease cortisol levels in the brain. Cortisol releases adrenaline which increases stress. However, since this herb decreases the production of this hormone, you’ll have control over stress management.
- Improves Overall Cognition
Your cognition controls decision making and learning. Ancient Ayurvedic practitioners utilized this herb specifically for memory retention. A recent study found that individuals who orally consumed this herb experienced a stark improvement in their memory and learning as opposed to those given the placebo.
- Promotes a Healthy Night’s Sleep
Since this herb helps calm the body and reduce stress, it’s only natural that it works as a sleep aid. Although researchers haven’t found a conclusive answer yet as to why, people take ashwagandha to help them calm down and ease into bed.
- Enhances Sexual Health
To have a healthy sexual and reproductive function, specifically in men, the thyroid and adrenal glands must operate cohesively. Ashwagandha works to boost these glands for improved libido and fertility. It’s also a natural confidence booster which works wonders for sexual function.
- Reduces High Blood Sugar Levels
When you have an imbalance in sugar levels, you’re susceptible to diabetes and other challenges. Interestingly, a recent study tested individuals diagnosed with schizophrenia. They were given ashwagandha over an extended period of time. At the conclusion of the study, those given the herb experienced a reduction in blood sugar levels. This led to an overall improvement in function.
Although this natural supplement is safe for virtually everyone to use, it’s always wise to consult with your healthcare professional prior to implementing this herb into your regular diet. Should you choose to use it, you’ll reap its wonderful benefits.