Author: Leigh Mccabe
Ashwagandha is quite well known herb in Ayurveda, the ancient traditional medicine science of India. The scientific name given to this herb is Withania Somnifera and it is also known with several other names such as Indian Ginseng, Winter Cherry, Ajagandha and so on. The plant belongs to the nightshade family.
What is Ashwagandha?
The name of this famous herb when translated in to English becomes ‘horse’s smell’. It gets this peculiar name from the fact that its roots smell like that of a sweaty horse but it has no further relevance to horse than that. Ashwagandha is a shrub that has oval leaves and bears yellow flowers and red colored fruit. The size of the fruit is similar to that of a raisin. This herb is grown in India, Northern Africa, and also in North America.
Ashwagandha comprises of several medicinal chemicals such as withanolides, alkaloids, choline, fatty acids, amino acids and much more. The leaves and the fruit both have definite therapeutic properties that are valuable whereas the roots of the plant are commonly used in the herbal remedies. Ashwagandha is an herb that facilitates the physiological function to normalize by functioning on the HPA axis and the neuroendocrine system.
Benefits of Ashwagandha
First and foremost, ashwagandha is popularly known as an Ayurvedic immune booster medicine (rasayana) and is also taken as brain tonic. Here are some of the most valuable remedies that Ashwagandha provides with:
- Ashwagandha is a considered as an adaptogen, which means it is a type of herb that can strengthen the overall resistance power. It is used primarily to supercharge the immune system after recovering from any kind of illness. Ahwagandha promotes the body’s capacity to retain homeostasis and resist stress. This precludes or reduces the imbalances caused from poor diet, lack of sleep, mental stress that might lead to health problems.
- It has been proven by research that Withania Somnifera (Ashwagandha) is an antioxidant that offers the benefits such as anti-stress, cognition-facilitating, anti-inflammatory, and anti-aging medicine.
- The fruits and the leaves of Ashwagandha are also used as aphrodisiacs, diuretics as well as for enhancing the memory power.
- The herb is also useful for treating disorders such as rheumatoid arthritis, pain, fatigue, gastrointestinal disorders, skin infections, and epilepsy.
- Ashwagandha is a revitalizing herb that can help the body to get rid of any kind of stress and also maintains the proper nourishment of the tissues.
- Ashwagandha is also beneficial in reducing the degeneration of the brain cells and reduces anxiety and stress; it also cures depression to certain extents.
Few recent researches have also proved ashwagandha to be anti-carcinogenic by suppressing the intercellular tumor necrosis factor.
Side-Effects of Ashwagandha
The herb is generally free of any side-effects but an over dose of the herb taken by a pregnant female might lead to abortion or miscarriage.
About the Author
The author of this article is a professional writer who has been taking natural health treatment. He is a regular user of health supplements since he has a long term acquaintance with the field of herbal pharmaceutical. The close connection with herbal health care products has inspired and encouraged the author to share informative and useful articles on it.