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Top Ashwagandha Benefits

Analysis by Dr. Joseph Mercola Fact Checked

ashwagandha benefits

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  • Ashwagandha is a powerful adaptogenic herb, meaning it helps your body manage and adapt to stress by balancing your immune system, metabolism and hormonal systems
  • Withanolides — naturally occurring steroids — in ashwagandha suppress pathways responsible for several inflammation-based illnesses, including arthritis, asthma, hypertension, osteoporosis and cancer
  • Withanolides also have immunomodulating properties, while somniferin, an alkaloid in ashwagandha, promotes relaxation and sound sleep
  • Ashwagandha supports sexual and reproductive health in both men and women. In men, it helps boost testosterone levels, and has been shown to improve semen quality in infertile men
  • In women, ashwagandha’s ability to rebalance hormones (including thyroid hormone, estrogen and progesterone) has been shown to improve polycystic ovary syndrome and relieve menopausal symptoms

Known as a multipurpose herb and "rejuvenator" used in ancient Ayurvedic and Chinese medicine for thousands of years, ashwagandha (Withania somnifera) is a plant native to India with a host of bioactive functions.

Ashwagandha is a member of the Solanaceae family along with eggplant and tomato. It bears light green flowers that evolve to bright red fruit and is able to survive extreme temperatures and widely varying altitudes.


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