Natural remedies to reduce stress and improve body composition are all over the internet. But how many of these natural remedies have real scientific studies that support their claims? A natural, unlikely, remedy could involve reducing work related stress—but that doesn’t mean stress can’t be reduced. However, a plant based supplement known as ashwagandha is taking the high-stressed community by storm.

Ashwagandha, also known as Indian Ginseng, is a medicinal herb with chemical properties that stimulate the human body’s response to both physical and psychological stress. Modern research has taken a peculiar interest in ashwagandha. Recent studies show the plant has a plethora of benefits to the human body.

Preliminary research is believed to show that ashwagandha can be used for anxiety/stress reduction, promoting brain health and treating those with cancer. However, you should always speak with your physician before consuming ashwagandha for health benefits. This article will briefly outline the benefits of taking ashwagandha and the positive effects it has on the body and mind.

Stress Reduction

Oft times, we find ourselves struggling to find the time in the day to cook, exercise, consume a proper diet and so on and so forth. The anxiety and stress of accomplishing any of these one tasks may lead to a stress bomb exploding onto a hot pan of freshly baked chocolate chip cookies, or whatever your sugary vice may is on that particular day.

The effect of stress on the body is well researched. Added stress is also linked to added weight gain. However, those with chronic stress have shown substantial progress on the Perceived Stress Scale when given ashwagandha root extract over a period of 8 weeks.  Ashwagandha reduces stress on the heart and helps to lower elevated blood pressure.

Additionally, research has shown that the stress hormone cortisol significantly diminished with the consumption of ashwagandha over 30 and 60-day periods. Prolonged high levels of cortisol stimulate obesity, cardiovascular disease and diabetes. Thus, the herb ashwagandha may play a pivotal role in individuals looking to take steps to prevent these issues.  

Weight Loss

Weight reduction and stress reduction are extremely comparable and linear. Reducing stress often reduces body fat and vice-versa.  Binge-eating, in some individuals, can be caused by elevated stress levels.  Don’t worry—ashwagandha may be the answer you have been searching for.

For active men, ashwagandha may raise testosterone levels by 17% and decrease cortisol levels by 28%. The increase in testosterone promotes muscle mass growth and reduces body fat. Due to ashwagandha’s effects on muscle mass, studies also show that the herb significantly increases muscle strength, exercise tolerance and lean body weight.

Fight Fatigue

Fighting fatigue is something that everyone endures from time-to-time. How each individual responds is another story. Fatigue can be cyclical and often recurs when the same conditions present themselves repeatedly. The brain and body function on well-timed energy sources.  Drinking water, consuming proper portions of protein, fat, carbohydrates and sleeping more are typical actions towards energy improvement.  These remedies are common but some individuals may need an alternative to refueling the body.

Ashwagandha helps sustain the central nervous system—which will naturally improve energy levels and help fight fatigue.  Thus, the effects of ashwagandha on the body is cyclical. The reduction of stress promotes the reduction of body fat which is shown to increase overall energy. Ashwagandha is also shown to improve the red blood cell count in the body—in turn improving blood circulation within the body.

The many pitfalls of life come quick and unexpected. But your personal health should always come first. While you may not have time in your day to prepare six nutrient rich meals, obtain eight hours of sleep every night, and exercise—time to take an ashwagandha supplement will always exist.

The known benefits of ashwagandha are immense. However, researchers are still examining the possible positive side effects that tag along with the herb.  Reducing stress is always a positive. Ashwagandha helps naturally achieve this by lowering cortisol levels in the body. It is important to develop supplementation consistency over at least a 30-day period.  An individual’s diet to redefine their body composition should contain ashwagandha supplementation.