Posted by Physicians Preference Vitamins on 7/5/2023 to Pregnancy
Are you feeling very stressed and anxious? Are you struggling with infertility? Do you have symptoms of hypothyroidism? An adaptogenic herb, Ashwagandha, may be able to help you since it assists with hormone balancing. This herb can also help with many other health issues.
What is Ashwagandha?
Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera), also known as winter cherry and Indian ginseng, is an adpatogenic herb that has many health-promoting benefits. It has been used for centuries in traditional medicine systems, particularly in Ayurvedic medicine, which uses a natural, holisitic approach to health. The history of its use in traditional Indian medicine dates back nearly 3000 years.
Adaptogens are ingredients in plants that improve an individual’s ability to cope with stress and adapt to change. The most recent definition of an adaptogen is “a class of metabolic regulators that enhances the body’s ability to adapt to environmental factors and avoid the damage they could imply.”
Health Benefits of Ashwagandha
- adaptogenic effects
- hormone balance
- increases fertility
- helps relieve stress
- helps relieve anxiety
- improves sleep
- neuroprotective effects
- sedative effects
- anti-diabetic properties
- helps muscle strength and recovery
Ashwagandha for Stress and Anxiety
Ashwagandha’s anti-anxiety effects may be due to several mechanisms. First, Ashwagandha may decrease the activity of the hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal (HPA) axis. In response to a stress stimulus, the HPA axis indirectly causes an increase in both cortisol and DHEA.
Second, it acts as an anti-inflammatory and antioxidant. Under conditions of stress, depression and anxiety, inflammatory and oxidative processes are increased. Ashwagandha inhibits these processes by acting simultaneously on different mechanisms.
Can Ashwagandha Help With Infertility?
Infertility is a very common problem in today’s world. It is also a very emotional topic for those couples who are really trying to have a baby. Hormone imbalance is a leading cause of infertility. It is well known that your hormones have to be at optimal levels and in balance in order to conceive and have a successful pregnancy.
Ashwagandha for Infertility in Men
Research demonstrates that in men with a low sperm count who were treated for 90 days with Ashwagandha, an increase in sperm count, semen volume, and sperm motility were observed. Testosterone and lutenising hormone levels also increased, while prolactin and FSH (folliculotropic hormone) levels were reduced.
In studies conducted in men with normal sperm count, it was noted that the administration of Ashwagandha also significantly improved semen parameters. There was an increase in sperm count, volume and motility, which also increased the possibility of pregnancy in women. An improvement in the hormonal profile and an increase in antioxidant enzymes and antioxidant vitamins A, C, E in semen plasma was also observed.
Ashwagandha for Infertility in Women
Ashwagandha is helpful for increasing fertility in women, as well. Research shows that oral supplementation with Ashwagandha was shown to improve sexual function in healthy women.
Ashwagandha for Hypothyroidism
Hypothyroidism is the most common thyroid disease in clinical practice. The substance in Ashwagandha that mainly stimulates thyroid activity is called withaferin A, which also has anticancer effects. The antioxidant effect of withaferin A normalizes the function of the thyroid gland.
A study designed to evaluate the efficacy and safety of Ashwagandha in patients with hypothyroidism was conducted. After eight weeks of Ashwagandha treatment, their TSH, T3, and T4 levels were significantly improved compared to placebo. Thus, it has been shown that treatment with Ashwagandha may be beneficial for normalizing thyroid markers in patients with subclinical hypothyroidism.
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Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera) - Current Research on the Health-Promoting Activities: A Narrative Review