The History and Health Benefits of the Ashwagandha Plant

An overview of ashwagandha along with its impact on cortisol levels, inflammation, pain, and more.

If you are familiar with the world of plant-based health and wellness, chances are you’ve heard of ashwagandha. With wide-spread reports of effective stress relief, rejuvenating properties, and other science-backed health benefits, it’s no wonder that this therapeutic herb is receiving so much positive attention.

Here is everything you need to know about ashwagandha and its celebrated healing properties.

What is ashwagandha?

The ashwagandha plant is one of the most coveted and powerful herbs in Ayurvedic medicine. It has been used for centuries for a variety of health purposes, like fighting stress, boosting endurance, and promoting an overall sense of calm.

In Sanskrit, the word Ashwagandha translates to “smell of the horse,” which refers to the plant’s unique aroma, and may refer to its resilience-enhancing properties.  Ashwagandha’s Latin name, Withania somnifera, means “to bear or induce sleep,” and is also known as Indian ginseng and winter cherry.

The ashwagandha plant, which is a small shrub with oval leaves and yellow flowers, is native to the dry regions of India and Northern Africa. Ashwagandha is also classified as an adaptogen, which means it is effective in helping your body deal with external stressors, like toxins in the environment, as well as internal stressors.

The herb contains several beneficial compounds, like steroidal lactones (called withanolides), alkaloids, fatty acids, and choline. While the plant’s fruit and leaves offer valuable therapeutic properties, it is the ashwagandha root that is most commonly used to promote a healthy response to pain and inflammation.

What are the health benefits of ashwagandha?

Ashwagandha is historically known for its restorative benefits and is also believed to be an effective remedy for enhancing the body’s response to stress by lowering the levels of our stress hormone, cortisol.

The use of ashwagandha works naturally to support a rejuvenating sense of well-being overall. Many studies have been performed on the therapeutic benefits of this herb, some of which include:

  • Enhanced response to pain and inflammation
  • Support for stress, nervousness and worry
  • Reduced fatigue
  • Support for restful sleep
  • Protected immune system
  • Improved cognition
  • Supported nervous system and endocrine system
  • Supported cardiovascular health

How is ashwagandha used in herbal supplements?

As you may have noticed, ashwagandha is being used as an ingredient in some of the most effective herbal supplements available today. For example, Rightful For Pain & Recovery uses this powerful adaptogenic herb to naturally enhance our body’s response to stress and inflammation, while also promoting a restful night’s sleep and a healthy response to pain.

Although ashwagandha is thought to be effective in these areas, it should only be taken as instructed, as it can intensify the effects of other prescribed medications. Always discuss any questions or concerns that you may have with your chosen medical professional, and always read your supplement’s ingredients list carefully to monitor your dosage. Our Customer Care Team and on-staff pharmacists are also available and happy to answer any questions you may have! Click here for the different ways to reach our team.

Learn more about how we combine ashwagandha with other meticulously selected and rigorously tested ingredients in our powerful, pain-relieving product.