18
Jul
2014

Powerful Ashwagandha: The stress reductor and sexual health herb

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Ashwagandha has been one of my best friends recently. I discovered it not very long ago. I read about it in the past and I had the information somewhere in my mind that is an amazing adaptogenic plant that helps the body deal with stress and that is amazing for the adrenals. For some reason I did not use it even though I had half a jar with this root inside my home. While thinking about a tea to make a few weeks ago I ran into it. I googled how to prepare the “magic potion” and then did it. After 1 cup I felt a bit sleepy but then I felt amazing energy levels and I was ready to go. Since then I try to drink it at least 4 times a week. I will do this for around 1 month, then I will take a break and switch with using another herb. I will let you know my results.

What is Ashwagandha?

It is actually one of the most vital herbs in Ayurvedic healing which has been used since ancient times to cure a variety of conditions.  Its latin name is Withania somnifera and it belongs to the nightshade family and its root and berry are used to make potent ayurvedic medicine. In Sanskrit it means “the smell of a horse”. These words speak a lot about the properties of ashwagandha. The herb has a calming and sedative effect on the brain (from where the feeling of being sleepy that I had). It has a horse-like smell and it is also believed to give the strength of a horse to anyone who takes it regularly. and as the name suggests it has traditionally been prescribed to help people strengthen their immune system. Another name for it is “Indian ginseng” but the herb is not botanically related to ginseng in any way. Of course, it does share the rejuvenating benefits of the ginseng commonly known to the Western world.

Powerful Ashwagandha: The stress reductor and sexual health herb

Ashwagandha contains many useful medicinal chemicals such as: withanolides, alkaloids, choline, fatty acids, amino acids, etc. The most commonly used part is the root.

Quick facts on the amazing properties of Ashwagandha:

  • confers immune system protection
  • combats the effects of stress
  • improves learning, memory, and reaction time
  • reduces anxiety and depression without causing drowsiness
  • stabilizes blood sugar
  • lowers cholesterol
  • reduces brain-cell degeneration
  • contains anti-malarial properties
  • offers anti-inflammatory benefits
  • is a wonderful health tonic for the mind and body
  • an effective immune-booster
  • lowers bad cholesterol and helps in the management of cardiovascular diseases.

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Health Benefits of Ashwagandha

The herb is an adaptogen, which means it can be used as a general tonic that can help your body cope with daily stress. Regular intake of ashwagandha will strengthen your resistance to stress and at the same time increase your energy levels. The herb has been found to alleviate fertility problems in both men and women and also has aphrodisiac properties. Besides fertility problems it is also good for the treatment of menstrual problems, chronic liver disease, bronchitis, fibromyalgia, asthma, and tuberculosis. Ashwagandha acts like certain anti-anxiety medications and may help relieve anxiety and depression as well. It has a calming effect on the brain and will help people who have trouble sleeping. Studies have found that the herb might inhibit the growth of cancer cells in the lungs, breast and colon. And of course, my favourite topic the herb is also good for your skin. Its anti-aging properties and will give your skin a youthful appearance for many years. It also used to treat skin infections and conditions such as leucoderma (a disease marked with white patchiness on the skin).

Recipe for Ashwagandha Tea

·         1 cup (240 ml) water.

·         1-2 tsp. (5-10 ml) ashwagandha root of leaf

You can make ashwagandha tea by boiling around one teaspoon of the root or the powder in water. Bring water to a  boil. Add the ashwagandha. Cover with a lid to prevent the volatile oils from escaping. Steep 5-10 minutes to suit your taste. Add a sweetener to your taste. Drink this concoction three times a day for about two to three weeks to notice the beneficial effects of this herb on your health.

Safety Precautions and Side-Effects of Ashwagandha

The herb is generally considered to be quite safe for use. However, if you do plan on using it on a daily basis, make sure to consult a physician beforehand.

Pregnant women should avoid using this herb since it has been found to induce abortion when taken in large doses. The herb should not be used by those who have hyperthyroidism since it may raise the level of thyroxine, the thyroid hormone.

It should also not be used with barbiturates or sedative drugs since it may increase the effects of these medications and cause potentially serious side-effects. (source : betteralive.hubpages.com)

have you ever used Ashwaganda before? What effects did you notice? How did it impact your health? Share down below.

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