In search of healthy and natural remedies for an always top well-being, a name with foreign origins comes to mind: Ashwagandha. The well-known Indian plant has won the trust of the whole world over the centuries for its beneficial properties that improve physical, cognitive and psyche functions. By now, given its effectiveness tested several times over time, its uses are quite frequent in various fields.
But what exactly is it for and how can it give us well-being in body and mind?
We are here to tell you all about Ashwagandha: properties, uses and possible contraindications. Let's go in search of Ashwagandha and discover its much sought-after qualities.
What is Ashwagandha, the elixir that fights stress
To rediscover the origins of Ashwagandha as a health remedy we must go back to the past, about 2500 years ago. It is a particular type of Ayurvedic herb, belonging to the Solanaceae family, which lives in India and which the healers of the past have learned to appreciate for its beneficial effects for both the body and the mind.
In scientific jargon it is known as "Withania somnifera" while in common jargon it is usually nicknamed "Indian Ginseng". Whatever the denomination used to identify it, we know with certainty that today it is not found only in the Indian territory but also in the Mediterranean districts.
In appearance it looks like a common fruit plant: red fruits that resemble cherries, but which can also have yellow and orange hues, and leaves with a hard and resistant appearance.
It seems that its fame has spread so quickly that even in some medical texts it is found as an adjuvant for some anxiolytic and debilitating problems.
Because the roots and leaves of this plant are capable of having adaptogenic, energizing and reinforcing effects. For this reason, its crops have been increased worldwide in regions where it grows luxuriantly, such as Nepal and Africa.
But is it true that a simple Indian plant alone can fight stress and help recover from some physical ailments? This is what we want to find out today by talking about its benefits and healing properties.
Ashwagandha Benefits: Energizing or Relaxing?
By now we know very well the intrinsic qualities of Ashwagandha: properties that act on the nervous system, circulation, immune system and many other aspects of our body.
Let's do a test together and search Google for "Ashwagandha properties": how many results do we find? There are practically so many that we even get confused!
And here is the reason that drives us to place an order on all its properties, to fully understand the advantages of this well-known Indian ginseng and learn how to use it too in our daily lives.
Ashwagandha can really make a difference in everyday life to improve our lifestyle and eliminate all forms of psycho-physical stress which is one of the scourges of this ever so hectic and demanding current reality.
Let's discover Ashwagandha: properties
So let's talk about ownership. Ashwagandha is energizing and relaxing at the same time. This means enormous help in case of tiredness and weakness, but also a natural tonic in case of emotional stress.
The combined action of the two factors allows you to regain a strong charge of energy and face the challenges of every day with more determination, from study to work, from social relationships to family ones. All without efforts, drugs or other questionable remedies.
After all, very little is needed to be master of oneself and if we don't let ourselves be caught up in daily stress it is easier to react with grit and feel good, in perfect harmony between body and mind.
So what makes Ashwagandha so important to us? Here are some examples:
- Improve memory, attention and concentration. It is really a panacea for every type of cognitive function.
- Reduces both physical and mental stress.
- Regulates blood sugar.
- With its tonic action it gives energy to the body, also improving all the functions of the organism.
- Its adaptogenic effects make it a remedy for increasing human resistance to disease.
- Also indicated in male fertility therapies because it is able to increase the testosterone.
- Reduces inflammation.
- It acts like a powerful pain reliever.
We can therefore summarize its main properties in three different groups, which we will now go into individually.
1. Energizing properties
Strength and vigour: this is the benefit of taking Ashwagandha supplements. The Indian plant stands as the optimal solution when both physical and mental tiredness prevails. It is also said to be rejuvenating but, although there is still no scientific evidence of this benefit, what is certain is that it invigorates in a short time and restores vitality even to those who feel very debilitated and stressed.
For this reason it is particularly suitable both for those who play sports and need to increase their resistance, and for those who face periods of severe tiredness and need to regain energy and quickly regain full fitness in a short time.
Its energizing properties are closely linked to its relaxing ones because they work together for total well-being that involves the whole person.
2. Relaxing properties
Ashwagandha favors the well-being of the mind because it is highly relaxing. The process that allows calm and tranquility to be achieved has been scientifically studied and occurs through the action of neurotransmitters.
Among them, serotonin and cortisol are properly regulated and reduce stress, improving quality of life and also mood. Consequently this plant is also indicated in therapies against depression and chronic anxiety, because they act directly on the nervous system.
The newfound calm also promotes restful sleep. That's why it is among the most popular techniques to help sleep wellespecially when you suffer from insomnia or have trouble falling asleep.
Its anti-stress properties also have another advantage: by acting on the nervous system, they also manage to protect it from possible neurovegetative diseases (for example Alzheimer's or Parkinson's disease).
Finally, the relaxing properties of the well-known Indian plant improve memory, help brain development and protect against possible behavioral deficits.
3. Defense and boosting properties
If our body takes Ashwagandha, it can ensure a set of natural defenses that help it improve, enhance and protect most of its functions. How?
The immune system is strengthened, thanks to its adaptogenic effects which allow it to increase the body's resistance to sources of physical and emotional stress.
Adrenal functions benefit from the action of the Indian plant which fights fatigue.
Its antioxidant action reduces states of inflammation, oxidative stress and also has anticancer effects.
Ashwagandha is frequently used to cure male fertility and facilitate conception. Recently, studies are also focusing on its effects on female fertility, especially as a valid aid to counteract hormonal imbalances. Furthermore, its positive effects are also useful in thyroid cases because Ashwagandha extract is also used in problems related to hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism.
Finally, they regulate the level of sugar in the blood. This hypoglycaemic activity is one of the most appreciated and many studies are investigating its potential for improving treatments against blood sugar and diabetes.
Contraindications for those taking Ashwagandha? Side effects and advice
The benefits of Ashwagandha are applicable to various parts of our body and mind. Therefore, its role among natural remedies against disorders such as migraines, sleep disorders, poor concentration, mood swings, anxiety and tiredness becomes undeniable.
But what are the contraindications? We know it's non-toxic, but there are a few red flags to watch out for when using this highly beneficial Indian ginseng. If, in fact, you notice gastrointestinal disturbances, vomiting or diarrhea, it is better to suspend it. Or, if you notice allergic reactions, consult your doctor immediately.
However, studies show that the side effects are very few and if Ashwagandha is taken sparingly and under control they can be almost completely excluded (except for specific cases of people who already suffer from previous pathologies).
Here are our tips for making proper use of Ashwagandha:
- Do not overuse or disproportionately .
- Avoid using it for too long periods but suspend it from time to time.
- Do not use it during pregnancy and breastfeeding.
- Do not use it in case of pharmacological therapies in progress.
- Consult your doctor before making frequent use of Ashwagandha.
The ideal dose is usually between 600 and 1000 mg, maximum 2 times a day.
Furthermore, always remember that its action is effective together with a balanced and balanced diet, rich in vegetables and fruit, because to have a healthy lifestyle it is not enough just to help yourself with supplements and vitamins, but we must also balance it with a healthy diet that is in line with our needs and body size.
So yes to Ashwagandha and yes to global well-being that harmonizes body and mind, but without losing sight of many other aspects which, acting together with Indian ginseng, can really help restore a healthy balance in our body.