If you have been following me for some time now, you have heard me talk about ashwagandha and the countless amazing benefits it can bring to our bodies. There is something so calming, earth grounding, and dare I say delicious about this Ayurvediuc healing herb.
It is easy to get caught up in the excitement of new herbs, superfoods, and supplements and that’s why I am here! I want to help guide you throughout this process, as well as give you an overview of this holistic health aid, some recommendations, and of course answer any questions you may have.
With all of this being said, it is important to know the type of practice ashwagandha comes from, the different forms of ashwagandha, and which one is right for you.
Ashwagandha comes from the Ayurvedic healing practice. This practice originated from India more than 5,000 years ago, often acknowledged as the oldest healing science (Ayurveda). It emphasizes preventional healing, meaning continuously maintaining good health by paying attention to one’s body, thinking, lifestyle, and diet (Ayurveda). Essentially, connecting with yourself mind, body, and spirit. Therefore, the Ayurvedic theory suggests that if disease or illness is to take place in one’s life, it is due to an imbalance or stress in the mind (MedicineNet).
There are a series of herbs that assist with the practice along ashwagandha. These herbs include ginger, holy basil, moringa, turmeric, and more. In its original state, ashwagandha is a thicker shrub with yellow flowers, red in color, and grows in dry regions such as North Africa, India, and the Middle East (AyurvedicHerbsDirect). However, due to its popularity, it is now grown in the United States, in mild climates. The herb naturally contains withanolides (gives ashwagandha its stress managing ability), choline (aids in cell growth), alkaloids (derived from plants), amino acids (protein), fatty acids (help with heart health), and sugars (AyurvedicHerbsDirect).
However, the main health benefits from ashwagandha are to boost the immune system, relieve stress, assist in increasing concentration, and has anti-inflammatory properties (AyurvedicHerbsDirect). Ashwagandha is also proven to help strengthen the lymphatic system (PlanetAyurveda). The two main forms of ashwagandha are pill (vitamin) and powder structures.
Deciding what form and brand to take is where it can be overwhelming! Here are some of my recommendations:
First, the pill. Like any other supplement, this will be taken with water and sometimes once or twice a day. A brand that I absolutely recommend for all supplements, is Gaia Herbs, especially their Ashwagandha Root product. Their herbs are grown on a Certified Organic farm and are then taken to their laboratory where they are tested for impurities such as heavy metals, pesticides, mold, and more. They work to concentrate the herbs to their most potent form within a process that is specific to each herb. Gaia Herbs is also a Certified B Corporation. Now you see why I recommend them!
In regards to the powder form, there are two ways this can take place: Simply ashwagandha powder, or ashwagandha as an ingredient within something. For traditional ashwagandha, Moon Juice offers the powder form with amazing ingredients: just ashwagandha! You can mix the powder into smoothies, coffee, tea, and even baked goods. Moon Juice is another brand that I support due to their unaltered ingredients, non-use of endocrine disruptors (if you are struggling hormonally, this is HUGE), as well as their products are 100% free of toxins, and are cruelty free. Their ingredients are bioactive, bioavailable, and are tested for impurities. You can’t get much better than that.
If you are looking for the herb mixed within something, Four Sigmatic’s Ground Adaoptgen Coffee is a great option. It is a coffee containing ashwagandha within the grounds. I truly love this option because if you are a coffee lover, with the occasional coffee jitters, you can say goodbye to those and just simply enjoy your delicious coffee and the positive side effects. Four Sigmatic is just another one of those brands that truly does it all, but in a way, it should be what all bands are doing! They use high quality ingredients, test them for impurities, and have brought over a Finnish ideal of using mushrooms in everyday life, to the states.
All of this information can be overwhelming, I have been there! When reading on superfoods, herbs, and supplements, the first question is always, “So, do I need to implement this into my life?” And my response is, consult your natural health care provider or doctor first. Herbs are very powerful, and I truly believe they work strong, healing magic. However, they can also be complicated if on other medications or with allergies.
Ashwagandha can bring a calming, healing presence into your everyday life, and can start you off on a magical health journey.
Medical Definition of Ayurveda- medicinenet.com
A Brief Introduction and Guide- ayurveda.com
Swollen Lymph Nodes & Glands- Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis, and Treatment- planetayurveda.com
About Us- Gaiaherbs.com
Author- Brigit See