Ayurveda and Science

Ashwagandha/अश्वगंधा/Ashgandh/Winter Cherry/Withania Somnifera


Hindi Name: Ashgandh
Sanskrit Name: Ashwagandha
English Name: Winter Cherry
Latin Name: Withania somnifera Dunal
A small perennial shrub with white flowers and orange red berry found in warmer regions of India. Today the herb is completely domesticated and is cultivated extensively in central and western India. The roots are used in the preparation of various formul

Ashwagandha Benefits & Uses

Roots of Winter cherry are highly acclaimed tonic for brain and nervous system in Ayurveda. Its usage is recommended in preventive health care. It is considered as "Medhya" which implies to its beneficial effects to the brain. Detail investigations, both clinical and experimental, observed that Ashwagandha acts as an antistress and adaptogenic herb. Regular use of Ashwagandha improves stress tolerance, thereby enhancing the mental capabilities. It is also known to improve the quality of immune functions.

By virtue of these uses it is often referred to as "Indian Ginseng".

  • Helps Fight Depression

    Ashwagandha might prove useful in reducing depression levels.

  • Treats Erectile Dysfunction

    Ashwagandha is good for boosting the libido in men and can be used in the formulation of medicine for erectile dysfunction (ED).

  • Increases Muscle Mass

    Ashwagandha has been found to be useful in improving the muscle mass, body composition & overall strength.

  • Increase Fertility in Men

    Ashwagandha uses also include increasing sperm count & motility. It helps increase testosterone levels and significantly boosts sperm quality and fertility in men

  • Controls Diabetes

    One of the Ashwagandha benefits is to control diabetes. Ashwagandha stimulates the pancreas to secrete insulin which helps lower blood sugar levels and hence control diabetes.

  • Enhances Memory

    Ashwagandha supplements may improve brain function, memory & reaction times.

  • Helps reduce Stress & Anxiety

    Ashwagandha has been scientifically proven to reduce stress and anxiety. Withania Somnifera helps reduce Cortisol also known as stress hormone which is released by the adrenal glands in response to stress.

  • Boosts Immunity

    Studies have shown that consumption of Ashwagandha helps boost immunity. Withania Somnifera also helps improve white blood cells & red blood cells.

  • Antibacterial Properties

    Ashwagandha has proven antibacterial properties. Withania Somnifera helps to prevent bacterial infections.

  • Lowers Cholesterol

    Ashwagandha health benefits also include improving heart health by lowering cholesterol.

  • Boosts Thyroid Function

    Ashwagandha may be able to benefit people with low thyroid function since animal studies show that it has a thyroid hormone balancing effect. Withania Somnifera root extract if given on a daily basis, can increase the secretion of thyroid hormones.

Chemical Composition

Ashwagandha is characterized by the presence of steroidal lactones, alkaloids and flavonoids. The steroidal lactones of Ashwagandha are collevtively known as Withanolides. Ashwagandha roots are reported to contain more than 30 steroidal lactones and about 20 alkaloids. Many of the chemical constituents have been investigated for different biological activities.

Effect on

Balances kapha and vata.
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