Ashwagandha is a popular Ayurvedic herb. It is also known as Indian Ginseng. It is well known in Ayurveda to relieve physiological and psychological stress. The word Ashwagandha means the smell of a horse. The herb has this name due to its unique smell and its traditional use to boost healthy male reproductive system. It is believed that when a person takes this herb he gains strength like a horse. It is used as a rejuvenating and adaptogenic herb.
Traditional uses of Ashwagandha
In Ayurveda Ashwagandha is known to balance Vata and Kapha. This herb con, however, imbalance pitta due to its heating, unctuous and building nature. It is very useful in supporting healthy reproductive system and muscles.
How can you useAshwagandha?
Useful herb Ashwagandha is available in three forms-liquid, tablet form and powder form. Traditionally, powdered ashwagandha is mixed with warm milk and honey. This is to be taken before bed. This mixture is believed to calm Vata and support healthy reproductive system and sleep patterns. For rejuvenation, Ashwagandha should be added with ghee and honey. Honey can be substituted with sugar. The mixture of herb with sugar and ghee also supports female reproductive system and joints.
The tablet form of Ashwagandha is also available. Those who travel a lot can use the tablet form more conveniently.
Ashwagandha is also available in liquid form and it has a long shelf life. The liquid form is easy to assimilate.
Health Benefits of Ashwagandha
- Ashwagandha can inhibit high level of cortisol which is known as the stress hormone. This herb is used in antidepressant drugs and tranquilizers as it helps in relieving mental and physical stress.
- Ashwagandha leaves are used topically to reduce swelling, skin sores and heal joint pains.
- According to the Indian Journal of Psychological Medicine Ashwagandha helps promote relaxation.
- In Ayurveda, Ashwagandha is known to improve energy and increase stamina.
- Ashwagandha is known to promote the growth of nerve cells and protect brain cells. Hence, it is used for the treatment of mental degenerative diseases.
- Ashwagandha supports sexual health and hence it is used as an aphrodisiac.
- It is used in various health tonic as it makes an individual strong and healthy. It is also present in Ashwagandha.
- Ashwagandha is a powerful anti-cancer agent as it can slow down the growth of cancer cells.
- Dr AshutoshGautam, Clinical Operations and Coordination Manager at Baidyanath, said that Ashwagandha also encourages hormone balance.
- Ashwagandha also treats insomnia. Ashwagandha is taken with warm milk and honey to regulate sleep and wake cycle. It can calm the nervous system and relieves stress and therefore cures insomnia.
Side Effects of having Ashwagandha
Ashwagandha is believed to be well tolerated but taking large doses can lead to diarrhea and abdominal discomfort.
Contradictions of using Ashwagandha
Ashwagandha is used in India during pregnancy but it is avoided by pregnant women in the west. It is believed to have a spasmolytic effect and can also cause abortions in animals.
Modern Research on Ashwagandha
Various researches are being carried out on Ashwagandha due to its variety of benefits. It has been a topic of research due to its benefits on the immune system. It is also been found how it supports the immune system during radiation and chemotherapy. It also shows antioxidant property in combination with other products.
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