Withania somnifera, commonly known as Ashwagandha (winter cherry), is an important medicinal plant that has been used in Ayurvedic and indigenous medicine for more than 3,000 years. Some herbalists refer to Ashwagandha as Indian ginseng. The plant extract has many bioactive compounds and thereby exerts antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and immunomodulatory activities. The plant extract and its bioactive compounds are used in the prevention and treatment of many diseases, such as arthritis, impotence, amnesia, anxiety, cancer, neurodegenerative and cardiovascular diseases, and others.
Benefits of ashwagandha that are supported by science
Ashwagandha is a prominent herb in Indian Ayurvedic medicine and has become a popular supplement due to its health benefits.
Ashwagandha may reduce blood sugar levels through its effects on insulin secretion and sensitivity.
Animal and test-tube studies have shown that ashwagandha promotes the death of tumor cells and may be effective against several types of cancer.
Ashwagandha supplements may help lower cortisol levels in chronically stressed individuals.
Ashwagandha has been shown to reduce stress and anxiety in both animal and human studies.
The limited research available suggests that ashwagandha may help reduce depression.
Ashwagandha helps increase testosterone levels and significantly boosts sperm quality and fertility in men.
Ashwagandha has been shown to increase muscle mass, reduce body fat and increase strength in men.
Ashwagandha has been shown to increase natural killer cell activity and decrease markers of inflammation.
Ashwagandha may help reduce the risk of heart disease by decreasing cholesterol and triglyceride levels.
The Bottom Line
Ashwagandha is a traditional medicinal herb with multiple health benefits.
It can reduce anxiety and stress, help fight depression, boost fertility and testosterone in men and may even boost brain function.
Supplementing with ashwagandha may be an easy and effective way to improve your health and quality of life.