Also Knows as: Indian ginseng, Winter cherry
Ashwagandha belonging to the family Solanaceae, is a small evergreen shrub. It has been traditionally known since ancient times in India for its numerous beneficial health activities. It grows in India, the Middle East, and parts of Africa. It’s root smells like horse (in Sanskrit, Ashva means “Horse” and Gandha means “Smell”) and is said to confer the strength and energy like a horse. Various parts of the plant are used, but the most common in supplements is a root extract. It can help your body manage stress also boost brain function, lower blood sugar and cortisol levels, and help fight symptoms of anxiety and depression.
Benefits & Uses
- Stress/Energy: Ashwagandha is effective in regulating hormones and the immune system, relieving stress, increasing energy levels and improving concentration. It is famous for its rejuvenating and adaptogenic properties. Hence, ashwagandha extract is widely used in sports nutrition supplements.
- Bipolar disorder: Ashwagandha extract, if taken for a period of time might improve brain function in patient of bipolar disorder.
- Hypothyroidism: (Underactive thyroid) People with underactive thyroid have high blood levels of a hormone called thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH). Patient of underactive thyroid can also have low levels of thyroid hormone. Taking ashwagandha seems to lower TSH and increase thyroid hormone levels in people with a mild form of underactive thyroid.
- Reduce side effects of antipsychotic Drugs: such drugs are used to treat schizophrenia but they can increase levels of fat and sugar in the blood. Ashwagandha Extract can help reduce fat and sugar in the blood.
- Attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)
- Brain damage that affects muscle movement (cerebellar ataxia)
- High Cholesterol
- Parkinson disease
- Reduce Cortisol Levels