So you’ve probably heard about turmeric and why it’s in everything right now, but have you heard about the wonder herb that has everyone talking, Ashwagandha? While it might sound like the new kid on the wellness block, Ashwagandha can actually be traced back more than 2,500 years and is highly revered in Ayurvedic medicine.
Ashwagandha, also known as Indian ginseng, means “the smell of a horse” (ahh, ok..) indicating that the herb has the potential to impart the vigor and strength of a stallion (oh! nice!). So why has this herb got everyone so hyped? Here are six research-backed benefits:
Ah, stress - most of us would do anything to relieve the pressure a little and relax more. Because Ashwagandha helps to regulate your body’s stress hormone, cortisol, it can make you feel more calm and potentially soothe adrenal fatigue (which is why we use this magical herb in our Tranquility Collection). One study showed that 88% of people who took Ashwagandha reported a reduction in anxiety, compared to 50% of those who took a placebo.
Research studies have further shown that the consumption of Ashwagandha led to significant modulation of immune system reactivity as well as helping to increase the red blood cell, white blood cell, and platelets count, which in turn helps to boost immunity.
“What was I saying again?” - We could all do with increased focus, memory, and mental clarity, right? Well, you’re in luck! Research has shown that Ashwagandha promotes antioxidant activity that protects nerve cells from harmful free radicals, thereby improving brain function, memory, and reaction times. Bonus!
A regular dose of Ashwagandha can help give you a youthful glow thanks to its next-level antioxidants. A 2016 study found that Ashwagandha can reduce free radicals in the body and slows down signs of aging (goodbye, grays!).
Due to its high withanolide content (which acts like a steroid), Ashwagandha can help soothe joint pain and swelling associated with arthritis, according to a small study from the Journal of Ayurveda and Integrative Medicine.
Research has shown that Ashwagandha may improve body composition and increase strength. In one study, participants had significantly greater gains in muscle strength and size and more than doubled their reduction in body fat percentage compared to the placebo group.
Ashwagandha has been used for centuries and although it’s safe for most people, certain individuals shouldn't use it unless they get the green light from their doctor or naturopath. But once you get the all clear, you, too, can join the well-deserved hype for a herb that is more than just a passing trend and continues to stand the test of time.