Ashwagandha, an herb that has its roots in Ayurvedic medicine, has many health benefits for the human body. It is an adaptogen and is generally considered safe. It may be used to calm the nervous system and help relieve anxiety. The list goes on, but first, what exactly is this powerful herb?
The root of the Ashwagandha plant has been used for thousands of years. It grows in India and parts of Africa. Ashwagandha's most powerful trait is it's an adaptogen.
What is an adaptogen? When your body encounters any form of stress, physical or non, it produces cortisol to deal with the stressor. Adaptogens help your body handle the increased amount of cortisol more efficiently, preventing burnout. They have a normalizing function on the body that helps it find a natural balance within.
Now that we know what Ashwagandha is, let's take a closer look at its benefits to the human body.
What are the health benefits of Ashwagandha?
Ashwadanda is known to:
1. Help manage stress and anxiety.
2. Help relieve symptoms of depression.
3. Strengthen your immune system.
4. Increase vitality and endurance.
5. Improve sexual function.
Lets take a closer look at how Ashwagandha effects all of these things.
Stress and Anxiety
In our busy lives we all encounter stress and anxiety in some form. Whether its the pressure from that due date at work or school, or maybe anxiety from something that happened in your life, Ashwagandha can help. With prolonged stress, we experience burnout. You no longer have the energy to do the things we want to do. Ashwagandha helps your body adapt to the stressor and balances your cortisol levels. Giving you the energy to experience a stressor for extended
amounts of time without crashing.
When you're always experiencing stress, your body is constantly in a state of fight or flight. If your body doesn't have time to recover from this response, depression will set in. Ashwagandha's ability to balance production of cortisol and adrenaline will help you handle the stressor more efficiently and recover from the stress. Giving you the chance to rest and the ability to better manage depression. Along with a good diet, proper sleep, exercise, and enough time outside, depression will likely disappear entirely.
Ashwagandha helps calm the nervous system and reduces anxiety. If you are more relaxed you may find it easier to fall asleep at night. Ashwagandha may also improve your quality of sleep. Helping the body relax and get more rest while asleep. Better sleep will also have a positive effect on stress, anxiety, depression, and your immune system.
By calming the nerves and helping your body recharge, Ashwagandha will help strengthen your immune system. When you are in fight or flight, your body focuses on an exterior threat and pays less attention to things it deems less important. Your immune system is a prime example. By better handling stress and getting more rest, your body has more time to strengthen immunity. The bottom line is, stress reduces your immunity and by better managing that stress you have more energy for your immune system.
Vitality and Endurance
In India, where Aswagandha has been used for thousands of years, it is known to make you "as strong as a horse". Physical activities are a form of stress on the body. Ashwagandh is known to increase endurance and help you recover from physical exertion.
Ashwagandha is known to improve the function of sex organs in both males and females. It is known to improve sperm count in males and help with erectile disfunction. In women, it may improve libido and enjoyment of sex.
While some scientific research has been done to back up these claims, the real evidence is in the billions of people that have benefitted from this plant over the course of its existence.
Adaptogens are generally considered safe and don't usually have any negative side effects. Compared to modern medicine that is usually more harmful than good, ashwagandha is a great alternative.
But don't just take my word for it. Do your own research and try the plant for yourself. It may take some time for the effects to accumulate in your body. After a couple weeks of continued use, I'm sure you'll love the medical benefits of ashwagandha.