ASHWAGANDHA (Withania somnifera): Benefits, Uses and Virtues of Ashwagandha? Medicinal properties? Dosage? Side-effects of Ashwagandha? Origins, Composition, Expert opinions, Combination with other plants and more Information on Ashwagandha (Indian Ginseng).

Ashwagandha

Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera) is one of the most powerful medicinal plants, and has been used for more than 3,000 years by one of the most oldest medicinal systems in the world: ayurvedic medicine. Its history means that the effects of the plant are very well known. The plant promotes sleep, balances the nervous system and restores the strength of the horse (Ashwagandha means “the smell of the horse”). It is considered a major plant in ayurvedic medicine and is sometimes known as Indian Ginseng, in reference to its similarities to Panax Ginseng, which also has the capacity to restore energy and vitality and has an effect on the libido.

Ashwagandha: Medicinal properties

Strength – Vitality – Power

rêve- gentle general tonic (+++) (traditional usage)
- fortifies the body considerably (+++) (traditional usage) (synergy with Ginseng)
- reinforces muscular mass (+++) (synergy with Maca and Spirulina)
- prepares the body for sporting efforts (++)
- fortifies the body: strengthens tissues, muscles, bones (+++)
- chronic fatigue, reduces feelings of tiredness (+++) (traditional usage)
- restores vitality, strength, energy (+++) (traditional usage)
- anemia (++)

 

Anti-disease – Anti-cancer – Anti-ulcer

stress – adaptogenic (+++) (Ashwagandha adapts to the needs of the organism like Ginseng or Rhodiola).
- anti-inflammatory (++)
- fortifies the organism (+++)
- stimulates the immune system (++)
- antioxidant / helps to prevent cancer: breast, lung, colon (++)
- helps to prevent tumor (might help to prevent the growth of tumors) (++)
- recovery from chronic diseases (++) (synergy with Ginseng and Goji Berry)
- anti-ulcer (++) (synergy with Turmeric)
- loss of memory, Alzheimer’s (+++) (serious studies have centered on the combined effect of Ashwagandha and Ginkgo Biloba)
- antiseptic: asthma, fever, colds, coughs, conjunctivitis… (++)
- hypothyroidism, stimulates and regulates the thyroid (+++) (not recommended in the case of hyperthyroidism)
- multiple sclerosis (+)
- rheumatism (++)

Sleep – Relaxation – Stress

rêve – promotes feelings of well-being in the medium term (+++) (synergy with Goji Berry)
- reduces the negative effects of stress, anxiety (+++) (synergy with Rhodiola)
- allows for a better response to stressful situations (+++)
- helps with falling asleep (+) (hypnotic effect in strong doses)
- soothing, relaxing (++) (sedative effects)
- promotes restorative sleep (++) (synergy with Goji Berry)
- affords the disengagement needed for new intellectual activity (++) (synergy with Rhodiola)
- migraine, loss of memory (++)
- depression, nervous exhaustion (++)
- protects the heart, high blood pressure (++)

Digestion

Digestion
- constipation (++)
- protects from stomach and intestinal ulcers (++)
- regulates the digestive system (++)
- combats diabetes (++)
- intestinal spasms (++)
- protects the liver (+)

 

Aphrodisiac

aprhodisiaque- regulates sexual functions (+++) (traditional usage)
- aphrodisiac (++)
- impotence, premature ejaculation (++)
- infertility (++)
- stimulates the libido (++)
- renews sperm, removes sperm of low quality (++)
- painful periods (+)
- menopause (+)

Ashwagandha: Origins

Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera) originated in India and is used very often in ayurvedic medecine (an Indian system of medicine that is one of the oldest in the world). It has been used for more than 3,000 years, and has survived through the centuries due to its numerous virtues. Its medicinal properties are close to those of Ginseng, and it is sometimes referred to as Indian Ginseng. It is said in India that Ashwagandha gives the strength and vitality of the horse. Ayurvedic medicine in general has proven itself to be very effective; it is the first system to have discovered the benefits of Turmeric, which is today considered a very effective substance to help the body for preventing cancer (according to numerous scientific studies). Ashwagandha, meanwhile, is a very powerful ancestral plant, which has allowed it to persist through centuries of use and to become one of the best known plants in the world today.

Ashwagandha: Composition

Ashwagandha (Withania Somnifera) is rich in iron, in glycowithanolides (antioxidants), tannins, glucose, potassium nitrate, alkaloids, fatty acids and numerous other substances… Ashwagandha also contains steroidal alkaloids: somnine, somniferine, anferine… and withanolides. These alkaloids play a major role in the active ingredients of the plant. Withania Somnifera also contains flavonoids, lactones, acyl steryl glucosides. In ayurvedic medicine (Indian) it is the leaves that are most often used, but so too are the plant’s roots, which contain the greatest number of active ingredients in the plant.

Ashwagandha: Dosage

It is recommended to balance one month of treatment / one week of rest / one other month of treatment. Ashwaganda is often sold in capsules: take 3-4 capsules every day (350mg x3 of powdered extract or 250mg x3 of dry extract), preferably in the evening. In the case of infusions or decoctions, take 1-2g of dried root for one infusion. In order to extract all the active ingredients, boil the plant for 15 minutes, then leave it to infuse for 10 minutes. Do not take more than 2 cups per day of decoction. Ashwagandha also exists in dyes or in fluid extracts, but it is in the form of capsules, that the plant reveals its greatest efficiency.

Ashwagandha: Ultimate effects, benefits, virtues

The main effect of Ashwagandha is to restore strength and vigor to those lacking in dynamism and energy, such as convalescents. Ashwagandha stimulates the immune system and promotes the healthy functioning of the organism. Like adaptogenic plants (which adapt themselves to the need of the organism, such as Ginseng and Rhodiola), Ashwagandha benefits the entire body and mind, and its range of uses is very broad. It protects the body from numerous diseases, helps to prevent cancer and it also possesses aphoridisiac virtues, acting as a powerful regulator. Ashwagandha is a plant that effectively combats all forms of stress and promotes sleep and quality of sleep. It also promotes healthy metabolic functioning and protects various organs.

Ashwagandha: Side-effects, contraindications

Ashwagandha is not recommended in the case of hyperthyroidism or pregnancy and can, in high doses, provoke certain intestinal problems. In strong doses, Ashwagandha can have a hypnotic effect. While this is rare, one must always be wary of plants that are as powerful as Ashwagandha. The plant should at first be tested in small doses, then increased gradually. Ashwagandha is best taken in the evening, because in strong doses the plant can act as a sedative. It should be noted that Ashwagandha is a very well known and tested plant and that using it within the recommended doses is safe.

Ashwagandha: Opinions of experts

Ashwagandha is a major plant in ayurvedic medicine (Indinan medicine) and responds to the needs of modern life in combating stress, diseases and in restoring strength and vigour. This plant is more adapted to men but is also effective for women. According to the Indian doctors who have used it for millenia, Ashwagandha is also effective at raising the libido, help problems with erection, combat infertility and improve sexual functions.

Ashwagandha: More information

Through its combined action as anti-inflammatory, anti-tumour preventative, antioxidant and regulator of the nervous system and sleep, Ashwagandha prevents the appearance of different diseases of the body and mind. It is a strong protector, an effective shield that can be used to prevent numerous diseases and to restore normal bodily functions. Studies are under way to determine the effects of Ashwagandha on Alzheimer’s disease.

Ashwagandha: Combination with other plants

Ashwagandha can be combined with many plants, due to its numerous broad virtues. Ashwagandha is particularly effective with Rhodiola (nervous balance, concentration, endurance), but also a very good association with Ginseng, Tribulus, Maca (libido, aphrodisiac, nervous balance, vitality), and also has an excellent synergy with Griffonia simplicifolia (sleep, deep depression, stress, insomnie) and Harpagophytum (very powerful natural anti-inflammatory, tendinitis, joint pain). Ashwagandha is also good with Ginkgo Biloba (blood circulation, concentration, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease), Goji Berry (anti-ageing, fatigue, sleep), Cordyceps (sexual energy, fatigue, convalescence, sport), Echinacea, Eucalyptus and Thyme (antiseptic, antiviral, antibacterial), Cannabis (nervousness, difficult in disengaging, painful periods), Turmeric, Liquorice and Lemon Balm (digestion, ulcers, excess stomach acid).

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