Can Ashwagandha Help With Stress? The Benefits, Dosage & Sources
We understand modern life is stressful. Looking after our cognitive and mental health has never been so important.
Natural supplements like adaptogens, have become popular supplements for many conditions related to stress. Adaptogens are certain mushrooms or herbs like ashwagandha.
The theory behind adaptogens says they help your body adjust to physical, chemical, or biological stress. They're thought to stimulate your body's stress-protection response and help its systems return to a balanced state called "homeostasis."(1)
So, what is ashwagandha and where does it come from?
Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera) is a staple herb used in Ayurveda, also known as Indian Ginseng or Winter Cherry. Ashwagandha is grown in India and is only extracted from the Ashwagandha root, never the leaves. The reason for this is that the root is the primary part of the plant used in Ayurveda. The root is the part of the plant that is used predominantly for adaptogenic benefits and internal ingestion. The primary use of leaves traditionally was for topical treatments on the skin.
At Peak Supps® we have a range of ashwagandha supplements which includes; ashwagandha pure capsules, ashwagandha powder and ashwagandha KSM-66®. Click here to shop our ashwagandha collection
The benefits of ashwagandha?
Ashwagandha is a multipurpose herb that acts on various systems of the human body: the neurological system, the immune system, the energyproduction system, the endocrinal system and the reproductive system. This herb has been studied as adaptogenic, antioxidant, anticancer, anxiolytic, antidepressant, cardioprotective, thyroid modulating, immunomodulating, antibacterial, antifungal, anti-inflammatory, neuroprotective, cognitive enhancing and hematopoietic agent. (2)
Ashwagandha is being extensively researched for multiple applications. These benefits come from the chemicals ashwagandha contains. The beneficial research found on these chemicals range from helping calm the brain, reduce swelling, lower blood pressure, to altering the immune system. (3) Due to these benefits we have seen a surge in demand for ashwagandha, so let's take a look at some of this research.
Several studies have shown that ashwagandha supplements may help relieve stress and anxiety. Stress is a state of mental or emotional strain or tension, which can lead to underperformance and adverse clinical conditions. Adaptogens are herbs that help in combating stress.(4)
The conclusion of one study suggests; High-concentration fullspectrum Ashwagandha root extract improves an individual’s resistance towards stress and thereby improves self-assessed quality of life. High-concentration full-spectrum Ashwagandha root extract can be used safely as an adaptogen in adults who are under stress. (5)
Another human clinical trial showed; Withania (Ashwagandha) to be somewhat effective in treating male stress related infertility by not only decreasing stress but also improving the level of antioxidants. (6)
Another small study with 58 participants, those who took 250 or 600 mg of ashwagandha extract for 8 weeks had significantly reduced perceived stress and levels of the stress hormone cortisol compared with those who took a placebo. There was also a significant improvements in sleep quality compared with the placebo group (8)
Chronic stress has been associated with a number of illnesses, including obesity. One trial roled out with a total of 52 subjects under chronic stress received either Ashwagandha (300 mg) or placebo twice daily. The treatment with Ashwagandha resulted in significant improvements in primary and secondary measures. Also, the extract was found to be safe and tolerable. The outcome of this study suggests that Ashwagandha root extract can be used for body weight management in adults under chronic stress.(9)
Studies have shown Ashwagandha to be adaptogenic but also immunomodulatory, insomnia relieving and memory enhancing. (7)
Improving The Immune System
Stress has been found to significantly reduce the abilities of the immune system to fight infections. One of the ways to overcome the defects of the immune system is the strengthening of the defense reactions by nutrition. One study showed; a combination of Maitake mushroom-derived glucan and Ashwagandha extracts, has strong pleiotropic biological effects related to immune health and stress reduction.(10)
The dosage - how much ashwagandha should I take?
Like all of our supplements we suggest each individual does their own research on each supplement. If pregnant, breastfeeding or on mediation, please consult a doctor before use. Due to our ashwagandha supplements having a variety of measurements check out the dosage for each product in our ashwagandha collection.
Sources Tagged within blog & below:
|(2, 4, 5)||K. Chandrasekhar, Jyoti Kapoor, Sridhar Anishetty1||https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/pdf/10.4103/0253-7176.106022|
|(6, 7)||© National Herbalists Association of Australia 2010||https://www.natural-knowhow.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/06/Medicinal-herbs-with-Adaptogen-stress-relief-action-article.pdf|
National Library of Medicine
N Am J Med Sci