Written by Ryan Raman, MHSC, RD
Ashwagandha is an ancient medicinal herb that’s popular in Ayurvedic medicine.
This powerful herb has been used for more than 3,000 years for various reasons like reducing stress, boosting energy levels, and improving concentration (1).
Here are 8 powerful health benefits of ashwagandha.
- Helps fight stress and anxiety
Since ancient times, people have used ashwagandha to fight stress and anxiety.
That’s because studies show ashwagandha blocks the stress pathway in your brain (2).
For example, a study in 64 people with chronic stress found that taking ashwagandha daily helped reduce anxiety and insomnia symptoms by up to 69% (3).
Summary Ashwagandha helps fight stress and anxiety by blocking the stress pathways in your brain.
- May lower your risk of heart disease
Heart disease is the leading cause of death worldwide.
The risk of developing heart disease is increased by several factors such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol levels, and high triglyceride levels (fat in the blood) (4).
For example, a study in 130 adults found that taking ashwagandha daily significantly reduced LDL (bad) cholesterol levels by 17% and triglycerides by 11% over 2 months (8).
Summary Ashwagandha may help reduce your risk of heart disease by lowering risk factors such as cholesterol and triglyceride levels.
- Lower blood sugar levels
Ashwagandha has been linked to many benefits, including lowering your blood sugar.
It does so by helping your body make more insulin — the hormone that moves sugar out of your blood and into your cells. It also improves your body’s ability to respond to insulin (9).
In fact, one study found that taking ashwagandha reduced fasting blood sugar by 13% (6).
Summary Ashwagandha may help lower your blood sugar levels by helping your body make more insulin and improving your body’s ability to respond to insulin.
- My reduce inflammation
Inflammation is a natural process that helps your body heal and fight infections.
Sometimes, inflammation can get out of hand and last longer than necessary. This is called chronic inflammation and is linked to diabetes, heart disease, and cancers (10).
Summary Ashwagandha can help reduce signs of inflammation and improve your immune system’s ability to fight infections.
5-8. Other health benefits
Ashwagandha has been linked to many other powerful health benefits, including:
- Improving muscle strength (5, 15).
- Boosting brainpower (16, 17).
- May help treat symptoms of depression (3).
Summary Ashwagandha has been linked to many other powerful health benefits such as boosting your immunity, improving muscle strength, boosting brain power, and treating symptoms of depression.