Botanically known as Withania somnifera, Ashwagandha is an ancient medicinal herb, also known by several other names, including Indian ginseng and winter cherry. Ashwagandha is an exceptional plant that has been used in the traditional Ayurvedic system of medicine for over 5000 years. It is classified as an adaptogen, which means that it can help your body manage stress. Not just this Ashwagandha also provides numerous other benefits for your body and brain.
May help reduce cortisol levels and stress
Cortisol is a stress hormone, released by our adrenal glands in response to stress, as well as when your blood sugar levels get too low. Studies have shown that ashwagandha support the adrenals via normalising cortisol levels.
Ashwagandha is best known for its ability to support resilience to stress, both physiological and psychological. Several controlled human studies have also shown that it can reduce symptoms in people with stress and anxiety disorders.
Immune boosting and anti-inflammatory benefits
Withania somnifera (Ashwagandha) also demonstrates excellent immune-boosting effects on our immune system. It increases the activity of natural killer cells, which are immune cells that fight infection and help you stay healthy. As Ashwagandha has potent anti-inflammatory properties it is very useful in painful conditions such as arthritis.
Improves brain function and memory
The active ingredients in Ashwagandha, called withanamides, have shown protective effects against B-amyloid-induced plaques in Alzheimer’s Disease. This is thought to be due to the natural antioxidants found in ashwagandha that scavenge free radicals to prevent cell damage. Studies have also shown that Ashwagandha supplements may improve brain function, memory, reaction time, and the ability to perform tasks.
Widely available and safe for most people
Ashwagandha no doubt is an ancient medicinal herb with multiple health benefits. It can reduce anxiety and stress and even boost brain function. However, certain individuals should not take it, including pregnant and breastfeeding women.
Incorporating Withania somnifera (Ashwagandha) supplements in our daily routine may be an easy and effective way to improve our health and quality of life.