Ancient Wisdom for Modern Wellness
The Therapeutic Benefits of Ashwagandha
Discover wide-ranging health benefits, from neurological function to hormonal health and how Ashwagandha can transform your physical and mental vitality.
June 17, 2023

Ashwagandha is a medicinal herb gaining popularity in the U.S. thanks to its potential to deliver a sense of calmness and promote overall wellness. Also referred to as “Indian Ginseng,” its roots and berries have been used for centuries in Ayurvedic medicine to treat various ailments. Emerging research shows that Ashwagandha may benefit the whole body. When ingested in tinctures, teas or in its raw form, Ashwagandha may promote positive effects within four to six weeks.

What is Ashwagandha used for?

In Ayurveda, an ancient medical system that remains one of India’s primary health resources today, Ashwagandha is considered a Rasayana, known to have a rejuvenating effect both physically and mentally. Today Ashwagandha is known as a potent adaptogen that brings your body back into balance by helping your body cope with day-to-day stressors. As the name suggests, adaptogens help your body adapt to environmental factors, affecting multiple body systems to manage physical and mental stressors. For example, it works to reduce stress hormones to encourage relaxation, raise serotonin levels for better sleep and increase testosterone levels to improve muscle mass and support weight loss.

What are the functional benefits of Ashwagandha?

With its influence on so many different areas of the body, Ashwagandha has wide-ranging health benefits. Studies have confirmed that Ashwagandha affects neurological, hormonal and cardiovascular activity, promoting calmness, reducing inflammation and improving memory and immune function. 

Calmness and Relaxation: Ashwagandha is best known for its ability to promote a sense of calm. Ashwagandha has been shown to balance cortisol, the "stress hormone," reducing symptoms of stress-related conditions. 

Hormonal Balance: In addition to reducing the body's stress response by regulating cortisol, Ashwagandha has a stabilizing effect on reproductive hormones and insulin, which can help improve metabolic health overall. While the herb may increase muscle mass and testosterone levels in males, Ashwagandha has not been shown to cause a significant increase in testosterone in females. Ashwagandha has also been shown to enhance thyroid function by converting less active hormones into more potent ones. 

Improved Sleep: Ashwagandha has been shown to promote sleep by helping people fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer. This is attributed to compounds in the herb that trigger drowsiness and regulate your circadian rhythm, or sleep-wake cycle. 

Weight Loss: Studies have shown that Ashwagandha helps curb bad eating habits by reducing food cravings. Ashwagandha may also increase your body’s sensitivity to insulin, which, in effect, lowers blood sugar. A lower blood sugar level helps your body burn fat stores efficiently.

Is Ashwagandha safe?

Most people who take Ashwagandha do not experience any adverse effects. Some, however, may experience mild digestive discomfort, dizziness or drowsiness. Large doses of Ashwagandha might cause stomach upset, diarrhea, vomiting and other symptoms of indigestion. It is always important to take the recommended doses to avoid any unwanted side effects. 

Pregnant or breastfeeding mothers, individuals with allergies to nightshade plants, patients with auto-immune disease and people taking medications should take special consideration before taking Ashwagandha to prevent complications. Always consult with your doctor before considering Ashwagandha or any other supplements. 

How much Ashwagandha should I take? 

Research supports a starting dose of 250 to 600 mg of Ashwagandha per day, as this dosage has been shown to provide significant health benefits without any serious side effects. The amount of Ashwagandha in OLO's UNWIND, roughly 10 percent of the recommended starting dose, was formulated to promote relaxation, while avoiding unwanted side effects. If you’re taking Ashwagandha as part of your supplement routine for general health, you may wish to take it in the morning with food. If used to promote sleep, you may opt for Ashwagandha before bed to help you relax in preparation for sleep.

With its adaptogenic properties, this ancient herb can help us cope with the demands of modern life. Whether you’re seeking tranquility or an energy boost, Ashwagandha may prove to be a valuable addition to your holistic health toolkit. 


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