Ayurvedic principles are scattered around the Vedas or vedic literatures, which is why India is generally known as a home for ancient healing systems.
Among so many Ayurvedic herbs, Ashwagandha has maintained its status in the world of Ayurveda, as one of the most powerful Rasayana (Rejuevnator) that promotes longevity and vitality.
For years and years, it has been praised as an important element of Ayurvedic medicines and is a popular adaptogen which helps manage stress levels while boosting the mental health that significantly improves the quality of life.
Even in these modern times, Ashwagandha is still considered as the backbone of the traditional methods of healing. It is still preferred by those who adhere to the Ayurvedic approach.
Now let’s just dig deeper in to this, and find out how a traditional medicine can be a cure for modern day problems? How can it contribute in balancing the busy & hectic lifestyle?
To know the answers, just keep on reading!
WHAT IS ASHWAGANDHA?
Ashwagandha is a combination of two Sanskrit words Ashwa which means horse and gandha means “smell” combined as Ashwagandha which means a plant that smells like a horse and gives strength as powerful as of a horse.
Ashwagandha is a well- known medicinal herb in Ayurveda. It is also known as “Indian Ginseng” or “Winter Cherry” and holds a prestigious title of “King of Herbs” in the traditional health care system.
It is a small plant, native to India, which grows in the dry regions and is cultivated once a year. It bears small yellow to green bell shaped flowers and fruits as well which are usually orange in color, when tender and turn red when ripe. Each and every part of this wondrous herb is essential and is widely used in Ayurvedic medicines.
HOW ASHWAGANDHA IS USED IN AYURVEDA
Each and every part of Ashwagandha is used in one or the other way. However, Ashwagandha roots are popularly used in different forms for treating a plethora of diseases.
Traditionally, Ashwagandha was used in form Churan (powder) which constitutes only the roots extracts. It was used in a form of a powder, for improving strength and stamina.
Moreover, in the ancient times it was used in form of pastes as well, the root were crushed and mixed with water to be applied, to reduce the inflammation of joints.
Later, it was used in form of Ashwagandharishta (health tonic) which is the liquid form of Ashwagandha. It potentially impacts the growth hormones and helps increase height as well. Also, it helps enhance the memory and other brain functions.
Another form of Ashwagandha is in form of oil. Ashwagandha is generally known for its calming effect, Ashwagandha oil is considered effective for reducing pain and muscle tension.
So, these were some of the traditional uses of Ashwagandha in Ayurvedic medicines.
However, nowadays it has emerged as medicines like in form of Capsules and tablets to resolve the modern day problems in a modern way. Ashwagandha has long been known for its adaptogenic properties, which means that it helps in dealing with stress while revitalizing the mind and body.
Although, there are many types of Ashwagandha, but the best type of Ashwagandha is Nagori, considered as an ideal and most effective variety of Ashwagandha.
WHAT MAKES ASHWAGANDHA A SOLUTION FOR MODERN DAY PROBLEMS
In todays, fast paced lifestyle every person is affected with stress, in one or the other way. However, some people are more deeply affected with its consequences, depending upon their personal, professional and health background.
Even though the body itself produces various chemicals and hormone to manage stress, but the issue arises, when it affects our physical, mental and emotional well-being, making it a chronic disease. Luckily the nature gives us an answer in form of adaptogenic herbs such as Ashwagandha. It possesses anti-stress properties that have the ability to reduce the cortisol levels, which is a stress hormone; responsible for dealing stressful situations. Higher the cortisol levels, the more the stress which can even lead to various health issues; the lower the cortisol levels, lower the stress which can eventually boost your overall health.
Thus, it clearly stands to be the most prominent ancient solution for a stress-free lifestyle in this modern era.
Now, let’s have a look on some of the remarkable health benefits of Ashwagandha:
For Stress and Anxiety
Stress is a part of modern lifestyle. Nowadays, we see people feeling stressed, depressed and overwhelmed because of the pressure they face as part of their daily life. But, leading such a life can hinder the productivity and can even cause some serious health issues.
Of course, there are several strategies to adopt for managing stress but if nothing seemed to have work till now, then we have got the answer to this in our ancient Ayurvedic treasures, known as Ashwagandha.
Ashwagandha is best known for its adaptogenic property that helps manage the stress levels naturally.
Several studies have shown that it can reduce the common symptoms of stress and anxiety, such as – trouble in falling asleep, difficulty in concentrating, loss of sexual drive, fatigue etc. Moreover, it is calming and relaxing in nature which helps in lowering the stress levels while normalizing the cortisol levels (stress hormone).
For Strengthening muscles
Nowadays, most of the people are conscious about their appearance. Every other person is trying to pack on muscles and want to convert their body mass into muscles. It can only be achieved with right training and nutrition including a supplement for increasing the exercise performance and increasing muscle mass.
Instead of trying on those chemically produced supplements, try something natural which has been used since the ancient era for providing strength.
Ashwagandha is such an ancient medicinal herb which roughly means “smell and strength of a horse.
Ashwagandha is a supplement that balances the cortisol levels while improving the testosterone levels naturally. Also, High levels of cortisol means decreased levels of testosterone, which plays a major role for building muscle mass. Ashwagandha is considered as a natural testosterone booster that stimulates muscle growth. Moreover, in a study done by NCBI, shows a positive impact on muscle mass and strength in young men engaged in resistance training.
For sound sleep
Hectic schedules, stress and unstable routine can often lead to sleepless night or disturbed sleep. This is the most common complaint nowadays.
And we know how frustrating it is. But before reaching out to those sleeping pills try a trusted ancient and natural solution to end those sleepless nights.
Ashwagandha has natural sleep promoting qualities which helps in calming the mind and body while improving the sleep quality. Moreover, it is potentially beneficial in treating sleep related disorders such as insomnia.
For boosting immunity
Living a healthy life in current scenarios is more important than ever. Where strong immunity is the need of the hour, for which there’s nothing better than Ayurveda.
Thanks to the antioxidant properties of Ashwagandha that makes it one of the best immunity boosters. It helps fight against cellular damage caused by free radicals. Also, it improves the body’s defense against disease and protect from various infections and common ailments.
For healthy and youthful skin
A healthy skin without the use of expensive make up products is every girl’s dream. So, to keep your skin healthy on the outside it needs to be healthier on the inside first.
Antioxidants present in Ashwagandha helps protect the skin from free radical damage, thus helps in slowing down the process of ageing. Not just that, it contains anti-bacterial and anti-microbial properties which helps fight various skin infections while promoting a healthy and youthful skin. Moreover, it promotes collagen production which gives your skin natural elasticity and keeps it firm.
For enhancing memory
Ashwagandha, being a rejuvenator helps in improving the overall physical as well as mental health. Ashwagandha helps in improving the brain health by enhancing the memory and other cognitive abilities.
Since years, Ashwagandha has been considered as an excellent memory enhancer. Ashwagandha has shown to increase acetylcholine levels in brain, which is related with improving the brain functioning and memory.
For treating inflamed and painful joints
As Ashwagandha is useful in improving muscle mass, it is as much beneficial for improving the bone health.
Ashwagandha possesses anti-inflammatory properties that help in reducing the pain caused due to inflamed joints and swelling. It even helps in maintaining the overall body balance while keeping your bones health and strong.
Ashwagandha is a herbal supplement and is safe for daily consumption. However, the recommended dosage of Ashwagandha depends on the age, digestion and lifestyle. Moreover, the general recommended dosage is between 500 mg to 1 gram per day. Though, it is still advised to consult a health professional for the correct amount of dosage.
Hope this blog provided all the information you wanted to know about Ashwagandha. Since ancient times, it has been treating a variety of ailments and still continues to restore balance in our modern day life. Ashwagandha has a rich history in Ayurvedic medicine and is a perfect old school remedy to cure modern day health problems.
Just a reminder, everybody has a different body type and every ingredient reacts differently on different people. So, it is advisable to consult a health professional for the required amount of dosage for this supplement.