HEALTHBUSS

Is Ashwagandha safe ? What is safe and what not !

Last updated on April 8th, 2024 at 12:08 pm

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Ashwagandha has been used traditionally for so many years. It has many proved medicinal properties and so now ashwagandha has been used widely for its health benefits. But Is Ashwagandha safe as medicine? it has now been widely used, so obvious now people have this concern in their mind.

Is ashwagandha safe for use, is daily use of ashwagandha is safe or not, its side effects, potential risks regarding consumption of ashwagandha are also other issues people are being more conscious about. Especially the health-conscious people.

In this blog I will try to elaborate the safety concerns about ashwagandha use in different situation and health condition. I hope you will get every answer about everything you are looking about the safety of ashwagandha.

Benefits of Ashwagandha

Since ashwagandha has been used to treat many health conditions, ashwagandha can be considered as multipurpose medicinal agent. Many studies and clinical trials have been conducted on this herbal medicinal drug. All the studies done with the purpose of finding the therapeutic use of ashwagandha gives the promising results in many health conditions. We will discuss some of them.

  • Act as adaptogen: Ashwagandha is known for its adaptogen properties. Adaptogen is a drug which adapt and cope with the mental and physical stress. The study shows that ashwagandha significantly reduces stress, level with increased sleep quality and body-mind coherence.
  • Reduces blood pressure: Ashwagandha has been studied to evaluate its use in controlling blood pressure. The results from these studies are positive. The study shows significant reduction of systolic as well diastolic blood pressure in the individuals treated with ashwagandha.
  • Increases muscle mass: Ashwagandha is also known for its use in increasing body endurance and strength. Ashwagandha does this my increasing muscle size and its strength. Study published in 2015 shows that ashwagandha helps in muscle development and recovery which directly affects the increase in muscle size and mass.
  • Anti-inflammatory: The study shows the ashwagandha as inflammatory drug. This study shows effectiveness of ashwagandha in various inflammatory rheumatological conditions like arthritis.
  • Improve sexual health: In ayurveda ashwagandha is considered as rasayana which means elixir of life. The name ashwagandha suggest the strength equal to horse. It is well established in study that ashwagandha helps in increasing testosterone, improvement in fatigue, vigor and psychological wellbeing which helps in increasing sexual stamina.

Apart from this, there are many other benefits of ashwagandha in health-related issues. We have seen some of them in which ashwagandha seem to show promising results.

Now without wasting much time let’s see is it safe to use ashwagandha for above or any given health issue.

Safety Profile of Ashwagandha

Safety Profile of Ashwagandha

There have been many studies done to ensure the safety and efficacy of ashwagandha as a medicinal drug. Many studies have shown that use or consumption of ashwagandha in any form is generally safe. Off course there are some protocols you need to follow before starting to consume the ashwagandha for any health benefits.

But for now, I will give detailed explanation of current available studies on safety of ashwagandha.

There are many studies, research and review article available on this topic. We will discuss few of them.

One of present study revealed that the daily consumption of root extract for 8 weeks is safe in both males and females. The study only highlighted the consumption of ashwagandha till 8 weeks, which was revealed as safe. However, further research needs to conduct study for long term use of ashwagandha.

Another study from Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine highlighted the use of ashwagandha SR capsules for 90 days. This study gave insight regarding use of ashwagandha sustained release capsules for term like 90 days. Study suggests that ashwagandha SR capsules can be safely used once daily as an adaptogen.

One review article published in 2000 ensure the safety of ashwagandha use for therapeutic use as an adaptogen, anti-inflammatory and anticancer.

There is also a study for duration of 10 weeks. It was placebo-controlled study. 58 participants were studied during study. Participants from study were instructed to administer 300 mg of ashwagandha root extract twice daily for 10 weeks to treat insomnia and anxiety. Study showed this ashwagandha root extract was well tolerated with no significant side effects.

So based on current research and studies the ashwagandha in any form is generally safe and have no significant side effects after consumption.

Now I know you are having other doubts also regarding the safety of ashwagandha. Do not worry. I have tried to cover all the queries you might have regarding this topic. We will see them in detail.

Is ashwagandha safe for any age?

There is very limited research done focusing on studying the safety and use of ashwagandha according to age or age groups. The available research and the studies we have discussed earlier are generally safe for consumption in adult. There are very or no research available which are focused on safety and efficacy of ashwagandha use in children, adolescents and elderly age group.

However there has been study about use of ashwagandha root extract in children to treat ADHD. The study didn’t show any significant risk or side effects after consuming ashwagandha root extract in different dosage. Though the concrete conclusion is needed to solidify this outcome.

Also read- Does ashwagandha kill emotions ?

For now, there are two things i can say about this. As there is not enough research and studies done on this aspect, there is need to study the use of ashwagandha in different age group.

Second thing, if you seek to have traditional medicine therapy for your children consult with your healthcare professional. Experts will evaluate the possible side effects on use of ashwagandha according to the age and other factors. If them find everything fair, they might customize the form and of ashwagandha for your children.

Is it safe to take ashwagandha daily?

There is not any scientific research that shows the use of ashwagandha on daily basis is harmful to any individual. So, you should only be concern about the duration of consumption of ashwagandha.

Like there are studies showing only safety when about being taken ashwagandha for 90 days or 8 weeks. More or less, other research studies also show this much duration of consumption of ashwagandha being safe.

So, you should be only concern about the duration of consumption of ashwagandha, like for how many days you are taking it. If you are using ashwagandha for longer duration, consult your doctor.

Is ashwagandha safe during breast feeding?

Again, there is no solid evidence about the safety of using ashwagandha during your breast-feeding period. So here, it’s not possible to explain the effects of ashwagandha on breast milk or infant.

But what important here is that this ashwagandha contains many active ingredients like many alkaloids. These elements can interfere with the production or quality of breast milk. This can harm the infant also. So here I would say you to play safe during using the ashwagandha when you breast feed.

You must consult your healthcare professional before using ashwagandha or any herbal medicine during your breast-feeding period. They would give you a personalized treatment adding ashwagandha in safe dosage, considering your health and other factors.

What about using ashwagandha during pregnancy?

There are some mixed types of opinions and studies related to safety of using ashwagandha during pregnancy.

Again, this means that you cannot take chance to risk your life and others also. It is a mixed type of suggestion which makes NO for use.

Like this study is positive about the use of any rasayana during pregnancy. It says that rasayana not only help mother but also improve the health of fetus. While we know that ashwagandha is a type of rasayana.

There is another study which do not contraindicate ashwagandha during pregnancy period. Study shows that there is not any toxicity seen in mother as well as in fetus in upon using ashwagandha during prenatal development.

As most of the research has been done on non-pregnant adults including female. So, there is not much scientific data on this aspect.

Is ashwagandha safe for women?

Any women can use ashwagandha with some considerations. Unlike men, women have no drawback on consuming ashwagandha. You just have to consider some factors like pregnancy, breast feeding and hypersensitivity to ashwagandha.

In those cases, you must consult your healthcare professional before choosing any herbal treatment including ashwagandha.

One of the reasons for this consideration is the complicated female physiology. Female body always has the loads of hormones or play of hormone always going in female body. So, the use of ashwagandha may interfere with any of hormone. Disturbances in this hormone cause many issues regarding menstrual period and pregnancy.

How much ashwagandha per day is safe?

There is not fix range for dosage of ashwagandha that need to be given to patient to treat specific condition. Your healthcare provider will evaluate your disease, history, age and other vital factors to determine the dose of ashwagandha.

According to most of research the ashwagandha extract in 250 to 500 mg per day is proved to be beneficial to treat any given condition.

For example, to treat anxiety, this research proved the dose of 225–600 mg for 1–2 months to be beneficial. For sexual dysfunction and sperm motility the dose of about 5 gm per day for 3 months has given the best results. The 2009 research article has documented these amazing results after treating with ashwagandha. It is observed that 14% female have got pregnant after taking the treatment of ashwagandha for infertility.

If you want to take ashwagandha for muscle growth and to increase the strength the study revealed that 500 gm of ashwagandha for period of 12 weeks would beneficial. Same effects have been observed in this study when ashwagandha extract has been used in the dose of 750-1250 mg for period of 30 days.

So meanwhile the dose of ashwagandha is varied. It will depend on the need for use, the duration for how long you are consuming and other factors. The healthcare professional will assess all these factors before deciding your dose. There is also another factor which will determine the dose to be given. The form of ashwagandha to be given is also crucial while deciding the dose of ashwagandha to be used.

Because the ashwagandha comes in different forms as powder, root extract, tablets or capsule, tincture. All these forms have their own properties and absorption potential which differentiate them from each other while deciding the dosage of ashwagandha.

FAQ’s

Is ashwagandha a steroid?

Ashwagandha is not a steroid. It has some naturally occurring naturally steroids like Withanolides. But considering ashwagandha as steroid would be wrong as it has many differences in working, benefits and its physiology.

Is ashwagandha hard on the liver?

No, generally ashwagandha is considered safe for liver also. But if you have any disease regarding liver and hypersensitivity for ashwagandha then you must consult your doctor before choosing any herbal treatment including ashwagandha.

Does ashwagandha increase testosterone?

Yes, ashwagandha do increases testosterone. Many studies reported increase in testosterone level after consumption of ashwagandha.

Can I take ashwagandha with water?

Yes, you can take ashwagandha with water. In fact, it is the most common way to consume ashwagandha powder.

Why avoid ashwagandha?

Generally, ashwagandha is safe and well tolerated in most situations. But if you any hypersensitivity to any drug and existing treatment and disease you should avoid ashwagandha consuming yourself. You must consult your healthcare professional begore choosing any herbal treatment.

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