High blood sugars, chronic cortisol output, overwhelming stress, crippling anxiety… these are the modern plagues that keep you from feeling peace. Wouldn’t it be simple if there were just a pill that could fix all that?
The bad news is that no supplement will compensate for poor lifestyle choices. But the good news is that if you are addressing dietary and emotional factors and still experiencing some extremes, ashwagandha may help modulate your responses. This herb, also known as Indian Ginseng or Winter Cherry, has been revered for millenia in Ayurvedic medicine. Native to India, its name means “strength of a stallion.”
The root is the part used in nutritional therapy and can be steeped in teas, or ground for use in capsules.
What are the purported benefits of ashwagandha?
- Regulating blood sugars
- Lowering cortisol levels
- Blocking anxiety and relieving stress
- Decreasing inflammation by reducing C-reactive protein (CRP)
- Enhancing the immune response by stimulating the activity of natural killer cells
- Promoting anti-oxidant activity to improve brain function and memory
- Boosting thyroid function
- Reducing cholesterol and high triglycerides
- treating adrenal fatigue
The beauty of ashwagandha is that it’s an adaptogenic herb. That means it will treats extremes and tends to bring into equilibrium both highs and lows. So it may be used for both hypo- and hyper-thyroidism, and for depression as well as anxiety.
But before you order some, be aware that it should be tested on you by a certified practitioner, particularly if you have an auto-immunity. Since ashwagandha is a member of the solanacea family, individuals with an auto-immune response may experience extraordinary results if they are TH-1 dominant, but it could exacerbate their condition if they are TH-2 dominant because of its effect in stimulating natural killer cells.
Doses of ashwagandha are typically around 500 mg, taken once or twice a day. It works best when combined with a diet high in healthy fats and proteins, as well as a diet void of sugars.