Ashwagandha (Withania Somnifera, Indian Ginseng)
Withania somnifera (L.) Dunal ameliorates neurodegeneration and cognitive impairments associated with systemic inflammation
Systemic inflammation driven neuroinflammation is an event which correlates with pathogenesis of several neurodegenerative diseases. Therefore, targeting peripheral and central inflammation simultaneously could be a promising approach for the management of these diseases. Nowadays, herbal medicines are emerging as potent therapeutics against various brain pathologies. Therefore, in this contemporary study, the neuroprotective activity of Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera) was elucidated against the inflammation associated neurodegeneration and cognitive impairments induced by systemic LPS administration using in vivo rat model system.
This extensive study using in vivo and in vitro model systems provides first-ever pre-clinical evidence that ASH-WEX can be used as a promising natural therapeutic remedial for the prevention of neurodegeneration and cognitive impairments associated with peripheral inflammation and neuroinflammation.
Adaptogenic and Anxiolytic Effects of Ashwagandha Root Extract in Healthy Adults: A Double-blind, Randomized, Placebo-controlled Clinical Study
Stress, anxiety and impeded sleep are a frequent feature of life in modern societies. Across socio-economic strata, stress, anxiety and ineffective sleep detract from healthful living and serve as precursors of various ailments. The use of herbs to offset these antecedents and outcomes has greatly increased in recent years. Ashwagandha, an adaptogenic Ayurvedic herb, has been often used to combat and reduce stress and thereby enhance general wellbeing. While there have been other studies documenting the use of Ashwagandha for stress resistance, this is the first study to use a high-concentration root extract while also varying the dosage substantially. Therefore, this is the first study to offer insight into dose-response of a high concentration root extract.
Ashwagandha is a medically important herb and has a proven impact on human health. The findings from this study suggest that eight weeks supplementation of aqueous Ashwagandha root extract was associated with a significant reduction of stress levels in individuals and improved the overall quality of life. Hence, the use of this herb as a supplement for stress and anxiety management could be an excellent alternative option. Further studies conducted with a larger cohort and in diverse populations and with more biochemical, physiological and psychological evaluation may confirm the present findings
Effects of Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera) on VO2max: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis
The purpose of this study was to systematically review the scientific literature about the effects of supplementation with Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera) on maximum oxygen consumption (VO2max), as well as to provide directions for clinical practice. A systematic search was conducted in three electronic databases following the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses Guidelines (PRISMA). The inclusion criteria were: (a) VO2max data, with means ± standard deviation before and after the supplement intervention, (b) the study was randomized controlled trial (RCT), (c) the article was written in English. The quality of evidence was evaluated according to the Grading of Recommendations, Assessment, Development and Evaluation (GRADE) approach. A meta-analysis was performed to determine effect sizes. Five studies were selected in the systematic review (162 participants) and four were included in the meta-analysis (142 participants). Results showed a significant enhancement in VO2max in healthy adults and athletes (p = 0.04). The mean difference was 3.00 (95% CI from 0.18 to 5.82) with high heterogeneity.
Ashwagandha supplementation might improve the VO2max in athlete and non-athlete people. The analyzed studies used oral administration of Ashwagandha which varied between 2 and 12 weeks with intakes between 300 to 1000 mg/day. Due to the limited number of studies included in this systematic review and meta-analysis, further research is needed to confirm the effects and the recommended dose.