What do people use ashwagandha for?
Ashwagandha is an important herb in Ayurvedic medicine. This is one of the world’s oldest medical systems and one of India’s healthcare systems.
In Ayurvedic medicine, ashwagandha is considered a Rasayana. This means that it helps maintain youth, both mentally and physically.
There is some evidence to suggest that the herb can have neuroprotective and anti-inflammatory effects. Inflammation underpins many health conditions, and reducing inflammation can protect the body against a variety of conditions.
Different treatments make use of different parts of the plant, including the leaves, seeds, and fruit.
This herb is gaining popularity in the West. Today, people can buy ashwagandha as a supplement in the United States.
What are it's Health Benefits?
Stress and anxiety
Ashwagandha may have a calming effect on anxiety symptoms when compared with the drug lorazepam, a sedative and anxiety medication.
A 2000 study suggested that the herb had a comparable anxiety-reducing effect with lorazepam, suggesting that ashwagandha might be as effective for reducing anxiety. However, the researchers conducted this study in mice, not humans.
In a 2019 study Trusted Source in humans, researchers found that taking a daily dose of 240 milligrams (mg) of ashwagandha significantly reduced people’s stress levels when compared with a placebo. This included reduced levels of cortisol, which is a stress hormone.
Ashwagandha may act as a pain reliever, preventing pain signals from traveling along the central nervous system. It may also have some anti-inflammatory properties.
For this reason, some research has shown it to be effective in treating forms of arthritis, including rheumatoid arthritis.
A small 2015 study Trusted Source in 125 people with joint pain found the herb to have potential as a treatment option for rheumatoid arthritis.
According to a 2011 review by Trusted Source, several studies have examined ashwagandha’s ability to slow or prevent loss of brain function in people with neurodegenerative conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease, Huntington’s disease, and Parkinson’s disease.
As these conditions progress, parts of the brain and its connective paths become damaged, which leads to loss of memory and function. This review suggests that when mice and rats receive ashwagandha during the early disease stages, it may be able to offer protection.
Ashwagandha, also known as Withania somnifera, is a popular adaptogenic herb that has been used in traditional Ayurvedic medicine for centuries. It is known for its ability to help the body cope with stress, anxiety, and other mental and physical stressors.
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