Ashwagandha helps to reduce blood sugar, fights depression, reduces cholesterol and cortisol levels. It also helps to combat cancer, anxiety, stress, inflammation, improves fertility levels in men and increases muscle strength. Ashwagandha is also ideal for boosting the testosterone level of men which results in a high sex drive.
Ashwagandha is a very powerful herb. In Sanskrit, it means ‘the smell of a horse’, which indicates the herb makes one have the strength and vigour of a stallion. It is also called the Indian ginseng. Ashwagandha belongs from the family of tomato, it is a plump shrub with yellow flowers and oval leaves. It bears a red fruit which is as small as a raisin. It is usually grown in mild climates such as Middle East, Northern Africa and the dry regions of India. This Ayurvedic herb is also known as Winthania somnifera.
Ashwagandha is generally orange-red when it becomes ripe and the flowers appear to be bell shaped. It includes steroidal lactones and alkaloids which gives it beneficial and healing properties. Components like cuscohygrine and tropine are also present in Ashwagandha. The long, tuberous, brown roots have been used in Indian Ayurvedic medicine since early ages. The dried leaves of Ashwagandha are often ground and a paste is made from the powder which is used to treat cuts and burns.
According to sources, Ashwagandha has been said to help with diabetes. It improves the sensitivity of insulin in muscle cells and increases insulin secretions. Blood sugar levels for people not suffering from diabetes can also be reduced. Some people who have schizophrenia keep getting attacks even with the least amount trigger. Ashwagandha can relieve these attacks due to the rapid reduction in fasting blood sugar levels. Many people also use this herb as a substitute for diabetes medicine.
It has been proved that Ashwagandha helps to induced ‘programmed death of cells’ or apoptosis, in case of cancer cells. It can also slow down the growth of new cancer cells to some extent. It can also be helpful to treat different types of cancers like ovarian, brain, colon, lung and breast cancer. Intake of Ashwagandha can also prevent metastasis (spread of the cancer cells to different organs of the body).
Cortisol is a stress hormone which is released during stress and when blood sugar levels start reducing rapidly. For some people cortisol levels in their bodies are chronically high which in turn leads to extremely high blood sugar level and increases the level of fat storage in the abdomen. In such cases, Ashwagandha can help to reduce the cortisol level and bring it down to normal.
Stress is usually inevitable and can occur at any time, but it can be controlled and reduced if certain methods are applied. Consuming Ashwagandha regularly at least once a day, can help make a huge difference in our lives. It can reduce the symptoms of stress and anxiety easily and help our brains to become more relaxed. People who have anxiety disorders or mental health conditions can also consume Ashwagandha to relieve the symptoms. Depression can also be kept at bay by consuming it daily.
Consuming Ashwagandha in the powdered form or taking supplements of the same can improve the reproductive health of men. It has also been proven to increase the sex drive, sperm count and motility. Couples trying to conceive should definitely try Ashwagandha for a better chance at conception. This usually works because Ashwagandha increases the antioxidant levels in blood. Sperm quality is also greatly affected due to consumption of Ashwagandha on a regular basis.
Research shows that Ashwagandha increases strength by improving the body composition of a person. People who want to lose fat also consume Ashwagandha quite often. This in turns promotes muscle gain in both men and women.
Ashwagandha increases the immunity of the cells which make you stay healthy by fighting infection. It also decreases components which trigger inflammation like C-reactive protein (CRP). Thus, the possibility of developing a heart disease is generally reduced.
Ashwagandha also improves the health of our heart by greatly reducing triglyceride and cholesterol levels. This happens because Ashwagandha has natural properties which make it ideal for decreasing blood fats. Consuming Ashwagandha on a regular basis can keep your heart healthy and prevent the chances of a heart attack.
Depression is a part of life, but for most people, it becomes chronic and can wreck havoc to their lives. Ashwangandha helps to alleviate and reduce symptoms of depression. According to studies, people consuming this herb had a better mental strength to overcome depression.
Ashwagandha has a variety of uses such as treating hemiplegia (one sided paralysis), backache and wounds. It also increases sexual desires in men and women, prevents aging and improves the thinking capacity of a person.
Ashwagandha can be very beneficial but if it is not taken in moderation, it can prove to be very fatal for health. Pregnant women are usually not allowed to consume Ashwagandha as it might induce miscarriage which can be a result of early labour pains. It can also increase the effects of anti- anxiety medicines and sedatives. Ashwagandha should not be consumed after having alcohol, as it may make matters worse and enhance the effects of alcohol. People with an upcoming surgery or bleeding issues should not consume Ashwagandha. Slowed pulse, drowsiness, abdominal pain and diarrhea are other possible side effects of Ashwagandha.
Ashwagandha is usually a drought tolerant plant and is only found in regions which receive very little to no rainfall. It grows in temperatures between 25 to 30 degrees C. It is found in Yemen, China, Nepal, dry regions of India, etc.
The amazingly complex herb, ashwagandha, happens to derive its name from the two sanskrit words, "ashwa" and "gandha".It is an exquisite herb, which can significantly cater to your body in more than one way due to its numerous health benefits.
Here are some of the most common advantages and risks of consuming this herb.
But, like every other herb, ashwagandha also has some risk factors associated with it.
Health Benefits of Aswgandha Meditional Plant:
Anti-Carcinogenic Properties: A research study has termed Ashwagandha as an emerging and novel alternative in the field of oncology because of its cancer killing properties, in association with radiation therapy and chemotherapy. It is also of interest because it is known to reduce the side effects of chemotherapy without interfering with the tumor cell-killing activity.
Anti-Inflammatory Properties: Ashwagandha has been found to be effective in dealing with a variety of rheumatologic problems. The herb is known to act as a cyclooxygenase inhibitor that decreases inflammation and pain. The research conducted at the Los Angeles College of Chiropractors suggests that Ashwagandha has anti-inflammatory properties that come from the alkaloids, saponins, and steroidal lactones found within it.
Antibacterial Properties: According to Ayurvedic medical texts, Ashwagandha is effective in controlling bacterial infections in humans. A study conducted at the Centre for Biotechnology at the University of Allahabad in India showed that Ashwagandha possesses antibacterial properties in accordance with that traditional belief. It also concluded that Ashwagandha was effective in urinogenital, gastrointestinal, and respiratory tract infections when consumed orally.
Cardio-Protective Properties: Ashwagandha, with its anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant, and antistressor properties, is good for cardiovascular health problems. It strengthens the heart muscles and can also control cholesterol. A study at the University of Arizona indicated that it possesses hypolipidemic properties bringing down blood cholesterol levels.
Anti-Depressant Properties: In India, Ashwagandha has been traditionally used in Ayurveda to improve both physical and mental health. The effects of Ashwagandha on mental health, particularly in depression, were studied at the Institute of Medical Sciences at Banaras Hindu University in India. The study supported the benefits of Ashwagandha in relation to anxiety and depression.
Fights Diabetes: Ashwagandha has long been used as a remedy for diabetes in Ayurvedic medicine. Research on the use of Ashwagandha in the treatment of diabetes indicated positive results. Experiments showed that blood sugar levels during fasting and post-lunch decreased significantly when Ashwagandha was comsumed for a period of four weeks.
Stimulates the Thyroid Gland: In cases of hypothyroidism, Ashwagandha can be used to stimulate the thyroid gland. A study on Ashwagandha’s effects on the thyroid gland revealed that the root extract, if given on a daily basis, would increase the secretion of thyroid hormones.
Relieves Stress: Ashwagandha is also believed to possess anti-stress properties. Traditionally, it had been administered to induce a soothing and calming effect on a person. The active ingredient that is responsible for this activity is still unknown, but various anti-stress properties have been observed in research experiments. The results of the study showed that Ashwagandha led to significant reduction in levels of stress in animals put under extreme temperature variations.
Antioxidant Properties: Ashwagandha is a very good source of antioxidants. These antioxidants are very effective in scavenging and neutralizing free radicals produced during the process of metabolism.
Immunomodulatory Properties: Research studies have showed that the consumption of Ashwagandha led to significant modulation of immune system reactivity and prevented myelosuppresson in mice induced by immunosuppressive drugs. It was also observed that Ashwagandha increased the red blood cell, white blood cell, and platelets count.
Increased Blood Production: Haematopoiesis is the process of producing new blood. According to research, Ashwagandha possesses hemo-poetic properties. The study showed that red blood cell and white blood cell counts increased significantly in rats which were administered with Ashwagandha. This could mean a positive effect on human red blood cells as well, thereby helping to prevent conditions like anemia.
Aphrodisiac Properties: It has been widely believed for many centuries that Ashwagandha had aphrodisiac properties and people used it as a medication to improve vitality and fertility. A recent scientific study indicated that Ashwagandha plays an important role as an aphrodisiac medicine as well as a way to improve semen quality. It also reduces oxidative stress throughout the body.
Ayurveda is based on the philosophy that health is a result of the balance between three basic elements in the body, also known as tridoshas. These are Vata, Pitta, and Kapha. The imbalance between these leads to various diseases. Arthritis and spondylitis, both being bone issues, is due to the formation of a substance known as ‘ama’ which are a kind of toxins. The theory behind treating joint issues is to rid the body of ama. This is done by a combination of diet, massage, and home remedies which can help control severity and progression of symptoms.
Regular detoxifying the body using ginger and/or black pepper with the meal goes a long way in detoxifying the body, which also eliminates ama from the body.
Whole body massage using herbal oils and/or powders is greatly beneficial for reducing pain and stiffness and improving mobility. These massage movements and the powders and/or oils also help improve blood circulation and lymphatic draining, so toxins are removed and circulation is enhanced.
Panchakarma is another detox method, which includes a combination of diet and lifestyle changes. This may take about 60 to 90 days for one session but is highly rewarding.
Most yoga asanas are aimed at improving metabolism and agility. There is no asana which can add to the pain if done carefully. Under supervision, learn simple yoga asanas which can be done without damaging the already affected joint. Not only would pain and stiffness reduce, the range of motion also would gradually increase.
Arthritis is inevitable, but the above can definitely help arrest progression and reduce the severity of symptoms.
In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!
The incidences of various heart ailments are on a mercurial rise. The problem is no longer related to old age. There are many young adults in their early 30's suffering from heart problems (mild to severe). Some people swear by conventional medications and therapies. There is no denying the effectiveness or credibility of conventional treatments, but one cannot neglect the side effects that come tagged along. Some of the advanced heart treatments are also very expensive. Does that mean one will never be able to enjoy a healthy and disease free heart? The solution to the problem lies in Ayurveda.
However, both current drug and Ayurveda agree that there are things you can do each day to keep your heart healthy and we have a few recommendations to help you. Pick maybe a couple and begin with those in the event that you like, then include a couple all the more at regular intervals until you are normally carrying on with a heart-healthy way of life. Reward your heart, as well as your whole physiology will be much obliged.
Practiced since ancient times, Ayurveda has gained immense recognition and popularity. Ayurveda believes that for a disease free health, the three energies or doshas- Vata, Pitta, and Kapha dosha should be in equilibrium. With Ayurvedic treatment, it is possible to enjoy a healthy heart provided one follows the Ayurvedic treatment and the healthy lifestyle modifications diligently.
Panchakarma: With Panchakarma, one can treat and manage almost all the health disorders including heart problems. The Panchakarma Therapy is carried out to detoxify the body of all the harmful substances and toxins. The detoxification involves five steps (each step specific to certain health conditions). The steps involved in Panchakarma are
A person is also given Oleation (massaging the body with herbal oil) and Fomentation (made to sweat profusely) before carrying out the treatment to ensure that the toxin becomes soft and loose.
Ankylosing spondylitis (AS) is a type of arthritis that affects the spine. This chronic disease is caused due to inflammation of the joints in the spine and usually affects young men. It causes the vertebrae to grow or fuse together, causing a rigid spine. Actually, it affects the discs in between the vertebral column. These discs get swollen, causing a limitation of spine motility. It is an autoimmune disorder and its symptoms are lower back pain and stiffness, which usually moves to the legs.
Ayurvedic treatment starts with detoxification and elimination of toxins. It relies heavily on the right diet and lifestyle as well as Ayurvedic herbal preparations. The panchakarma techniques called kati vasti, sarvangadhara and patrapinda svedana are very beneficial too. The basic explanation for the disorder is that AS occurs due to an accumulation of ama or toxins in the body. Where ever ama deposits in the body, pain is caused. Ayurvedic treatments aim at digesting the ama by using herbs as medicine and balancing the aggravated vata.