Ashwagandha helps modulate hormone balances, including thyroid hormone, estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone. It reduces cortisol levels, lowers blood sugar levels, restores insulin sensitivity and helps to reduce anxiety and stabilize mood. Stress produces cortisol and high cortisol levels will prohibit weight loss no matter what diet you are on. Cortisol stimulates ghrelin a gastric hormone that increases insulin. Ghrelin is an appetite stimulant that increases our drive to overeat. When taken prior to bed it can help you get a good night’s sleep. In a controlled study, researchers who gave healthy men 500 mg of the herb daily reported significant improvements in their reaction time and task performance, compared to men who received a placebo.
In Ayurveda the herb ashwagandha is said to improve the body’s defense against disease by improving the cell-mediated immunity. It also possesses potent antioxidant properties that help protect against cellular damage caused by free radicals. It is considered as an adaptogen that stimulates the immune system. Ashwagandha increases the count of white blood cells and prepares the body to produce antigens against various infections and allergies. It is also considered as a tonic for the heart and lungs as its regular intake controls the blood pressure and regulates the heartbeat. It has a strong nourishing and protective effect on the nervous system.
Take 500 mg twice per day with meals.