Common Names: Ashwagandha root, Ajagandha, Ashwaganda, Winter Cherry, Indian ginseng
Botanical Name: Withania somnifera
Family: Nightshade Solanaceae
- Flowers – small, berry-like, yellow in colour
- Plant – considered a shrub that count mount into approximately 5 feet
- The whole herb can be medicinal
- It is widely distributed on Asian countries like Pakistan, India and Sri Lanka
- Ashwagandha contains alkaloids, glycosides and withanolides that contribute to the following numerous properties listed below.
- Abortifacient – it can affect menstruation and induce miscarriage. Pregnant women must be guided.
- Adaptogens – restores the body’s equilibrium and building resistance to stress. It calms and energizes depending on what condition the body experiences.
- Anodyne – it is also known as analgesic property. It reduces sensation of pain by suppressing sensitivity of neurons.
- Anti-inflammatory – can lessen inflammation and reduce painful swells.
- Anti-cancer – it stops or delays the growth of cancer cells.
- Antiviral – acts against viruses that cause flu and influenza.
- Aphrodisiac – the aromatherapy of this herb can increase sex drive and improve sense of well-being.
- Diuretic – it aids kidneys to expel excess accumulation of fluids in the body like the common oedema.
- Febrifuge – it reduces body temperature and gradually eliminates fever caused by viral infections.
- Hepatic – it aids in the detoxifying functions of the main digestive organ – the liver.
- Hypotensive – it can lower down blood pressure to avoid incidence of deadly strokes.
- Sedative – it relieves tension and calms the nerves.
- Tonic – it boosts the immune system to avoid contacting diseases, and supports energy and vitality.
History and Tradition
Ashwagandha has been known and used in the native lands of India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka for over 4,000 years already. It the tradition of Ayurvedic medicine, it has been prescribed by experts as an all-purpose tonic. The Hindi name Ashwagandha has been roughly translated as ‘the smell and strength of a horse’.
Plant Properties and Components
Medicinal Uses and Health Benefits
Ashwagandha is commonly noted for its benefit on dealing with stress and anxiety. The herb contains elements that can calm the nerves and reduce tensions. This is very useful especially during hectic schedules or day to day pressures. The use of its roots can let your body feel the rejuvenation it needed.
It also acts as a hypotensive natural medication. It significantly reduces blood pressure readings and promotes healthier blood circulation. An extremely high blood pressure can be triggered by stress and extreme hot temperatures that can lead you paralyzed by obtaining strokes.
The constituent withanolides of this herb can stimulate release of reproductive hormones that can increase one’s libido. Especially for aging individuals, this can really improve your sex drive and the sense of wellbeing.
It can relieve joint pains linked to rheumatoid arthritis because of its anti-inflammatory properties. It can also prevent asthma attacks and maintain healthy skin condition. Its oil can be used to externally to relieve lower back pains.
Dosage, Cautions and Side Effects
You can take a mixture of a teaspoon Ashwagandha powder and a glass of water. Its roots can also be taken as tea through decoction or as capsules. Just like asafoetida, Ashwagandha must be taken with proper caution on pregnant women because of its abortifacient element.