Constant rush, pressure, worries, reduced levels of energy, concentration, reduced sexual desire and satisfaction, constant fatigue, disturbed sleep…….
It is quite clear that almost every one of us will find ourselves in at least one of these so-called "Problems of modern times". Consciously or unconsciously, absolutely every one of us tries to find a "balance" in our everyday life in order to deal with all of our challenges.
FOR ENERGY AND ENDURANCE
When we say adaptogenic effect, we are talking about the potential that some plant extracts have, or rather their constituents, to increase the body's ability to tolerate, adapt, survive and function under any stressful situation.
Additionally, ashwagandha is one of nature's most potent aphrodisiacs. It naturally stimulates male sexuality, increases testosterone, and certain studies show that it can also contribute to fertility.
In addition to this, ashwagandha is also rich in a number of other components that can help the body in various aspects - it has a strong anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effect.
The very essence of Dr. Mitov's approach implies treating the root of the problems, so from his experience, changes in lifestyle are of great importance to this goal. But it would be a shame not to use the potential of nature to help us. In short, the potential of plant extracts, more specifically their components - adaptogens.
Ashwagandha is definitely one of the most important herbs with an adaptogenic effect. It is a plant from the Solanaceae family, otherwise well known to us - it also includes tomatoes, potatoes, geraniums, eggplant, tobacco and the like.
It grows in warm regions and is believed to have originated in the northeastern parts of India. It is also called Indian ginseng or winter cherry. Its root is the part of the plant that is most often used.
Proven and potential effects of using Ashwagandha:
Reducing stress, anxiety and fatigue
A feeling of irritability, fear without an obvious reason, feeling of stress and general worry... All of these symptoms can define and describe a general state of anxiety and feeling anxious.
Experiencing anxiety is a normal part of human life. However, if it is a frequent, intense, excessive and constant feeling of fear in relation to everyday situations, then it is likely that an anxiety disorder is present. The best known effect of ashwagandha is exactly this - better coping with stress and anxiety.
Ashwagandha is considered to have beneficial and positive effects on the endocrine, nervous, immune and cardiovascular systems. It participates in the regulation of metabolism and helps the brain during exposure and response to any stressful situation. In addition, it has an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effect, which protects our cells from damage that can be particularly pronounced during chronic stress.
Botanical adaptogens do not have the classic stimulant effect characteristic of caffeine, nicotine, amphetamine and cocaine. Stimulation by adaptogens is with a completely different mechanism, primarily metabolic regulation of the various elements of the stress system, as well as modulation of the stimulus-response relationship.
The adaptive response to stress involves the activation of intra- and extracellular pathways for signal transmission, as well as increased expression of anti-apoptotic proteins, neuropeptides and finally, antioxidant enzymes. Accordingly, botanical adaptogens are also described in the literature as "moderate stress vaccines", inducing stress-protective responses.
Adaptogenic substances have the capacity to normalize body functions and strengthen systems threatened by stress. They have a proven positive effect on health, especially in situations of emotional stress, as well as environmental conditions that result in a stressful effect. Adaptogens are harmless agents, which non-specifically increase the defense (resistance) of the organism itself, against physical, chemical, biological and psychological factors (external stressors), giving a normalizing effect, independent of the nature of the pathological condition.
The single, acute administration of a botanical adaptogen will undoubtedly give a stimulating effect, but the regular, chronic application of these herbs will result in adaptive changes in the responses to repeated stress conditions, i.e. the manifestation of enhanced (booster) effects, similar to vaccines (in relation to coping with stress). At the molecular level, this involves regulating the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis, as well as nitric oxide levels.
Coping with chronic fatigue
Adaptogens also have an effective application in chronic fatigue. Ashwagandha is used to treat asthenia (mental or physical fatigue).
Asthenia (or asthenic syndrome) is a health condition characterized by general physical and mental weakness, reduced work capacity, low concentration, poor memory, irritability (low threshold of tolerance to stress factors), headaches, insomnia, possible anorexia, and occurs most often after periods of intensive work, which require great mental activity.
Increased testosterone levels in men and stimulation of male sex drive
Herbal medicine enthusiasts have claimed for years that ashwagandha extract has extraordinary potential as an aphrodisiac, that is, a male libido enhancer.
In recent times, these claims have received a scientific basis. Namely, the active components of ashwagandha, such as withanolides and saponins, are associated with several benefits, including raising testosterone levels. Thus, Ashwagandha extract is recommended for those who want to increase their testosterone levels, i.e. improve their physical performance and/or intensify sexual "power".
The anti-stress effect of ashwagandha can help with testosterone levels. By reducing stress and anxiety, i.e. reducing the level of cortisol, we contribute to optimizing the level of testosterone. Additionally, the potent anxiolytic effect of ashwagandha also contributes to testosterone levels in the body.
Ashwagandha works indirectly to optimize testosterone, but the extract can also work directly. The active components mentioned, called saponins, are confirmed by research as natural testosterone boosters.
A 2013 study shows interesting results. Supplementation with ashwagandha (675mg, 3 times daily) has been associated with as much as a 167% increase in sperm count, a 53% increase in sperm volume, and a 17% increase in testosterone levels. In addition, an increase in the mobility or motility of spermatozoids by as much as 57% was also shown. Thus, the researchers conclude that ashwagandha possesses potential therapeutic value in relation to infertility.
Supporting women's reproductive health
Ashwagandha can act on the prevention of endometriosis, myomas, fibromyomas, but also in the normalization of female hormone levels. It has also been found to ease menopausal symptoms and stimulate the female reproductive system.
A study from 2018 indicates that women who used the herb daily for a month noticed a significant improvement in sexual function, but also experienced orgasms more easily. Such results were not so surprising for the researchers, because some other studies that were previously conducted showed positive effects of ashwagandha in terms of reducing general physical, chronic stress, but also a positive effect in terms of circulation and improved libido.
It is very significant to say that no significant side effects of ashwagandha supplements have been observed. Thus, they can be freely taken together with various contraceptives, which is significant for women, because contraceptives can seriously reduce sexual pleasure.
How does ashwagandha improve sexual function and sexual drive?
There are several mechanisms that could explain the beneficial effect on sexual drive of this herb. For example, ashwagandha has been shown in numerous studies to:
- Improve and decrease symptoms of anxiety and depression.
- Increase testosterone levels
- Improvement in circulation
- Improved inflammatory markers
- Improvement in energy level
Support of quality sleep
Some research has linked the use of Ashwagandha for improving "sleep hygiene". Namely, according to researchers, ashwagandha helped people fall asleep faster, sleep longer and have an overall better quality of sleep.
One study found that subjects who used ashwagandha extract reported up to 70% better sleep quality after 6 weeks. This effect of ashwagandha can be attributed to several different compounds that it contains. Namely, one of them is triethylene glycol, a compound that is naturally present in ashwagandha and which scientists believe is partly responsible for this "sleeping" effect. Other research shows that ashwagandha acts on the so-called GABA receptors, which are crucial for falling asleep. Some researchers believe that there are other, unstudied compounds that are responsible for this positive effect of this herb. In some studies, ashwagandha has also been shown to be beneficial in people with insomnia.
Another theory that explains this effect of ashwagandha is that it primarily has a strong and proven anti-stress effect. This is mainly due to the presence of compounds called withanolides, which are characteristic of ashwagandha. It is thought that by relieving and reducing stress, ashwagandha indirectly helps us fall asleep faster and have better sleep quality.
Better immune response
Data recently published in the Journal of Clinical Medicine indicate that supplementation, even with lower doses of standardized ashwagandha extract (60mg), can modulate innate and acquired immunity in healthy individuals and significantly improve their "immune profile".
Researchers from the University of Oklahoma, in their randomized, clinical study, conclude that such information shows that ashwagandha with its immunostimulating effect can be counted among the herbal extracts that contribute to stronger immunity.
This is a clinical study that is among the first to look at the connection between ashwagandha and the immune response in humans.
The research included 24 healthy men and women between the ages of 45 and 72 who were randomly assigned to receive either 60mg of ashwagandha extract or a placebo (over a 1-month period).
The results showed that those who used ashwagandha extract improved their innate immunity (as measured by measurements of cytokines, T cells, B cells and NK cells) and acquired immunity (as measured by immunoglobulins, including IgA) , IgG and IgM.
This is the first relevant data according to which ashwagandha extract (glucosides, i.e. withanoloids) has a strong potential in modulating innate and acquired immunity.
It is very important to note that: Our immune system is strongly connected with many other biochemical and cellular processes in the body, so this study has positive implications for our overall health.
Support of thyroid function
Preliminary studies show promising results regarding using ashwagandha for thyroid problems. Namely, it has been shown that ashwagandha supplementation in people with HYPOthyroidism leads to a significant increase in thyroid hormone levels. In fact, there was a significant increase in thyroid hormones T3 and T4, and a decrease in TSH.
Ashwagandha's ability to reduce cortisol is thought to be the reason behind this effect. Chronically elevated cortisol levels lead to a decrease in T3 and T4. Ashwagandha appears to stimulate the endocrine system.
However, people with HYPERthyroidism must be careful not to use ashwagandha. Because their T3 and T4 levels are already too high, and TSH levels are low.
Increased energy and muscle mass
57 male subjects who regularly practiced weight lifting and weight exercises, took an ashwagandha supplement (root extract – 300mg), twice a day for a period of 8 weeks. The muscle strength, size and body composition of the subjects were monitored. In addition, the time required for repairment of muscle tissue, as well as testosterone levels, were evaluated.
The researchers conclude that supplementation with this extract is associated with a significant increase in muscle mass and muscle strength.
2-3 capsules a day
ASHWAGANDA - SUPPLEMENT FACTS:
1 Ashwagandha capsule contains:
- 350 mg dry extract of Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera) and
- 5.25 mg of withanolides.