Herb of the Month: Ashwagandha
Stress! We have too much of it and it can end up making us sick. According to the Center for Disease Control, stress accounts for up to 90% of doctor visits! But don’t let that statistic stress you out.The good news is, there are tons of things we can do to alleviate and heal from stress so we can get ourselves back to calm.
So if you experience stress to any degree, and want to restore and heal your system, I’d like to introduce to you one of my absolute favorite go-to stress -busting herbs, Ashwagandha!
Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera) is a prolifically grown Indian shrub used in ayurvedic medicine. It is an adaptogenic and rejuvenative herb that both strengthens and calms the nervous system. “It is used in conditions of overwork, stress, nervous exhaustion, and for ‘all you ‘burned-out Type A folks’”, according to Leslie Tierra in her classic reference book, Healing with the Herbs of Life.
So friends, speaking from experience (achem), this is a great herb to add to your healing pantry!
This well-rounded herb also~
- promotes deep sleep
- restores hormone balance
- increases libido- acting as an aphrodisiac!
- tonifies the system
- increases life force vitality
- combats stress
- reduces inflammation
- improves learning and memory
- helps stabilize blood sugar
The part used is the root. You can take as:
Decoction: 1 tbsp dried root in 1cup water
Tincture: 10-60 drops, 3-4 times a day in water
Capsules: 600-1000 mg. twice daily
Powder: 3 grams twice daily in boiled warm milk
My favorite local tincture is Benedictine Herbs from Santa Cruz, CA. Outside of Santa Cruz, check your local herbal apothecary or source online to be on your way to a healthier, happier you!
*Avoid this herb if you are pregnant. Check with your healthcare provider before using if you are on medication.