Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera) also known as winter cherry is an adaptogen that has been called the Ayurvedic ‘ginseng’ for its abilities to provide increased energy, athletic prowess, and protection against colds, flu, and other infections. Ashwagandha is also known for its abilities to increase fertility in both men and women by supporting the reproductive system. Ashwagandha grows throughout India and Asia, and is a small bush bearing tiny red berries. In Sanskrit the name means, “strength of a horse,” likely a descriptor of the herb’s abilities to improve male fertility.
Benefits of Ashwagandha
Ashwagandha adapts, thus the name adaptogen, to your body to give it what it needs. Ashwagandha:
- Boosts immunity
- Is mildly sedative
- Increases vitality
- Can regulate blood sugar levels
- Positively effects the endocrine, cardiac, and central nervous systems
- Reduces free radical damage that leads to disease and aging
- Improves male fertility
- Helps women with milk production post-partum
- Decreases toxic overload which can impede both male and female fertility
- Improves the body’s response to both physical and emotional stress
- Improve neurological conditions such as Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s disease, and epilepsy.
- Balance hormones that cause adrenal and thyroid problems
- Prevent and treat cancer
- Slows aging
- Impedes infection
How Does Ashwagandha Work?
Ashwagandha works in many ways. It cooperates with your body to bring it back into balance. It does this by providing high levels of antioxidants, supporting hormonal function, and keeping your parasympathetic and sympathetic nervous systems in balance (reducing the fight or flight response associated with high levels of stress). Research on Ashwagandha has also determined that extracts of the plant have a direct spermatogenic influence on the seminiferous tubules of immature rats presumably by exerting a testosterone-like effect, in other words, it can make male sperm more viable.
The biologically active chemical constituents of Ashwagandha include alkaloids (isopelletierine, anaferine, cuseohygrine, anahygrine, etc.), steroidal lactones (withanolides, withaferins) and saponins (Mishra, 2000 et al., 2000). Sitoindosides and acylsterylglucosides in Ashwagandha are also anti-stress agents.
These compounds in Ashwagandha can therefore reduce cellular damage which leads to everything from brain deterioration to cancer.
The Withanolides, particularly Withanolide-A, is within a group of compounds found in the Solanacae family. They are similar to the active compounds in Ginseng known as ginsenosides. These compounds have shown promise as having anti-cancer activity.
BeHerbal’s ashwagandha is sourced only with high quality ingredients. 250 mg of Ashwagandha leaf and root extract twice daily for 3 weeks improves reaction time and task performance, compared to taking a placebo. For stress-induced male infertility and cancer prevention up to 5000 mg daily for up to three months can be taken. For blood sugar regulation in diabetics, a dose of 1000 mg of Ashwagandha 3 times daily for 30 days is recommended.
Side Effects of Ashwagandha
Side effects of any type are unusual and mild, as Ashwagandha has been used as both a food and herbal supplement for thousands of years. However, in high doses it may have steroidal activity like Creatine.
*This statement has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Always consult your qualified healthcare provider before beginning any diet or program.