Ashwagandha (Indian ginseng) and
its Health benefits
Ashwagandha, also known as Withania somnifera (commonly known as Indian ginseng), is a plant that has a wide range of health benefits, including its ability to reduce stress, gain weight, to fight against diabetes as well as cancer etc. It also improves immunity by increasing the supply of antioxidants to the body. This plant also has antibacterial as well as anticonvulsant properties.
Withania somnifera (Ashwagandha) has had a great significance in the Ayurveda for many centuries. Ayurveda is an ancient Indian system of medicine. Ashwagandha had even used by Americans and Africans in order to stay away from several types of infections.
What is Ashwagandha?
Ashwagnadha is a plant which belongs to the Solanacea family having scientific name Withania somnifera. The word Ashwagandha means the smell of a horse. Like the odor of the horse sweat, the root of this plant seems to emanate and hence the name of this plant Ashwagandha. This plant originated from India and grows best in the dry regions of the country. Indian ginseng is a robust plant that can even survive at very high temperatures (up to 40ο C) as well as at very low temperatures (up to 10ο C). This plant grows from the sea level up to a height of 1500 m above the sea level.
Studies on Withania somnifera indicated the existence of therapeutic abilities of the plant as well as showed no toxicity in the chemical constituents that are present in this plant. Research on this plant indicates several health benefits of Indian ginseng because of its anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidizing, anti-stress, drug withdrawal and sleep inducing properties. This plant also acts as a tonic to boost energy and hence improves the overall health of the body.
Health benefits of Ashwagandha (Indian ginseng)
The Ashwagandha herb is an excellent herb for the overall health of the body. It is effective in various health conditions. The important health benefits of Ashwagandha are well explained below:
Another health benefit of Ashwagandha is that it improves immunity. As this plant is rich in antioxidants, hence it helps increase the production of white blood cell and thereby improves the functioning of the immune system. By boosting the immune system, this plant ensures better health of the body and reduces the risk of getting sick. Along with this, it also provides energy to the body when a person feel weak and helps in recovery of the patient from illness. which makes it beneficial for treating many types of diseases and health problems. This herb is often used to reduce fever and fight against infections.
One of an important health benefit of Indian ginseng is to provide relief from the stress. Various anti stress properties have been observed in various research experiments. Traditionally, it is found to induce a soothing as well as a calming effect on the person.
As we know that stress is responsible for loss of appetite, unhealthy lifestyle as well as loss of weight. Ashwagandha helps to maintain a healthy weight as well as helps in gaining weight in those people who are underweight by managing stress. This is also one of a health benefit of Ashwagandha. It is a natural herb that provides the natural way to manage stress as well as to maintain healthy weight.
Ashwagandha is a natural way to treat diabetes to some extent. It is another one of an important health benefit of Indian ginseng. Diabetes is one of a serious disease that is characterized by dysfunctional carbohydrate metabolism in the body which in turn leads to high blood sugar levels in the body. This disease is considered one of a growing and serious threat to the populations of developed as well as developing areas of the world. One of the major complications of diabetes is the risk of cardiovascular disease. This Ashwagandha not only helps to control the symptoms of diabetes, but also reduces the risk of developing heart disease that are associated with diabetes.
Ashwagandha helps the body to produce thyroid hormones. The thyroid controls how the body metabolizes food and creates energy. A healthy thyroid is essential for maintaining healthy weight levels and promoting restful sleep patterns.
A study concluded that ashwagandha can successfully reduce symptoms of anxiety and neurosis in patients. It acts like GABA to reduce anxiety and panic attacks.
Ashwagandha may help to improve oxygen flow and usage on a cellular level. When oxygen use is increased, endurance and strength also increases. Ashwagandha is also helps to reduce lactic acid, which in turn reduces recovery time after a workout.
Fights Hair Loss
Ashwagandha is also useful for combating androgenic alopecia, commonly known as balding. It helps in ameliorating metabolic syndrome, a health condition which causes premature balding. Therefore, the Ashwagandha hair loss solutions are extremely popular.
Ashwagandha acts as a natural aphrodisiac. This is another benefit of Ashwagandha. It has been widely believed that Withania somnifera had aphrodisiac properties and hence people used this plant as one of a medication to improve fertility as well as vitality. Even recent study indicated that Indian ginseng plays an important role in improving the quality of semen.