Ashwagandha is a medicinal herb traditionally used in Ayurvedic medicine for its adaptogenic, neuroprotective, and immunomodulatory properties. Research has shown that ashwagandha can help reduce inflammation and improve people’s sleep quality with chronic stress or insomnia. However, different people respond differently to this supplement, so it is essential to take your time before determining which dosage will work best for you.
Ashwagandha, also known as Indian ginseng, poison gooseberry, or Indian winter cherry, is a “broad-spectrum medicine” that helps the immunological, neurological, endocrine, and reproductive systems.
Anxiety, restlessness, high blood pressure, and exhaustion are just a few of the problems and symptoms that this potent plant may assist with. The amount of ashwagandha you should take depends on a number of variables, including your present health, age, the severity of your symptoms, and how knowledgeable you are with adaptogen herbs. It’s recommended to start “low and slow” when it comes to herbal medicines. In this manner, you may test your response safely and find the dosage that works best for you.
What Is the Purpose of Ashwagandha?
In the Solanaceae/nightshade plant family, ashwagandha (Withania somnifera dunal) is called an “adaptogen herb.” Adaptogens are herbal medicines that aid the body’s adaptation to stress and normalize biological systems. Ashwagandha is also often used as an anxiolytic or a drug that helps regulate anxiety symptoms.
For more than 2,500 years, Ayurvedic medicine has employed ashwagandha for its thyroid-modulating, neuroprotective, anti-anxiety, antidepressant, and anti-inflammatory effects. Among the various benefits of ashwagandha are:
- Assisting in the reduction of inflammation and the prevention of oxidative damage
- Acting as a natural stress reliever, for example, by assisting in the maintenance of homeostasis even during times of mental or physical stress
- Cortisol (one of the body’s primary stress chemicals) levels may be reduced.
- Thyroid hormones must be balanced.
- Boosting the immune system after a bout of sickness
- Stamina and athletic performance are improved, and muscular strength is increased.
- Adrenal exhaustion treatment
- Improving the quality of sleep
- Anxiety and depression reduction
- Reducing the loss of brain cells
- Normalizing blood sugar and assisting in the prevention of diabetes
- Cholesterol and triglyceride levels are being reduced.
- Possibly aiding in the prevention of heart disease, stroke, and cancer
- Increasing fertility, especially in men, by increasing sperm count
- Managing attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) symptoms (ADHD)
What role does ashwagandha play in promoting health and combating the adverse effects of chronic stress? The presence of protective chemicals termed withanolides, a category of steroidal lactones, such as withaferin A, withanolide D, and withanone, is responsible for many of the herb’s medical characteristics, including its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant actions. In addition, many additional health-promoting compounds have been discovered in ashwagandha, including flavonoids, catalase, superoxide dismutase, glutathione, alkaloids, amino acids, sterols, tannins, and lignans.
Recommendations for Ashwagandha Dosage
Ashwagandha supplements are available in three different forms: extract, capsule, and powder. Herbal treatments are made from many various parts of the plant, including the roots, leaves, seeds, flowers, stems, fruit, and bark.
Now that you’ve learned why ashwagandha is used, you’re probably asking how much ashwagandha you should take. The dose of ashwagandha varies based on the ailment being treated.
The amount of withanolide in a product might help you determine how concentrated it is. It should be in the range of 1% to 10%. (some feel that products with at least 2.5 percent withanolides are most effective). This information should be included in a high-quality supplement, and many will be prepared to “gold-star standards,” ensuring that you obtain a product rich in withanolides. The supplement’s benefits are greater the higher the withanolide concentration.
It’s advisable to start with a modest dose of ashwagandha and gradually raise your dosage as required, just as with other herbs and supplements.
Most experts advocate beginning with a dosage of 300 to 500 milligrams of ashwagandha extract per day, with withanolides ranging from 5% to 10%. A complete ashwagandha extract dosage would be 1,000–1,500 mg per day.
If you want to take the dried root of ashwagandha instead of the extract, the usual dose is three to six grams per day.
Some individuals may want to supplement with even more significant amounts, especially if they are working with a naturopathic practitioner or other healthcare professionals. Up to 6,000 mg of ashwagandha per day is a large but usually safe dosage. However, experimenting with a dose of roughly 1,250 milligrams is a safer bet since this level has been proved to be safe in research. Lower ashwagandha dosages of roughly 100 to 250 mg per day have also been demonstrated to help improve the immune system in some instances.
When it comes to ashwagandha dosage, most individuals prefer to take lower dosages two to three times each day in split quantities. However, if you opt to take a whole dosage at once (typically in the range of 300–500 mg of a root extract), the herb should be taken with meals, preferably first thing in the morning with breakfast.
Dosage for Specific Issues/Conditions
What is the recommended ashwagandha dose for anxiety? According to Psychology Today, a normal ashwagandha dose for anxiety is 300 milligrams of concentrated extract given once or twice daily. However, it takes around 60 days for the benefits of ashwagandha to become completely apparent.
Other ashwagandha dose suggestions for common ailments and symptoms are as follows:
- For regulating testosterone and promoting male fertility, use 300 milligrams of root extract twice a day to 5,000 mg per day of ashwagandha.
- Dosage of ashwagandha for thyroid health and hypothyroidism: Take 300 mg of root extract two to three times each day.
- Start with 300 mg of ashwagandha for sleep, given one to two times per day.
- Take up to 5,000 mg of ashwagandha per day for fertility and hormonal balance.
- For arthritic symptoms and inflammation reduction, start with 250–500 mg of ashwagandha per day.
- For muscular building, use 500–600 mg of ashwagandha per day.
- Take 300 milligrams of ashwagandha two to three times a day for cognitive health and memory.
- To combat the side effects of chemotherapy, take 2,000 milligrams of ashwagandha each day.
Side Effects and Risks
Although ashwagandha is typically well accepted and regarded as a “gentle” herbal medicine, some potential side effects include upset stomach, vomiting, diarrhea, and other indigestion symptoms. It’s also likely that ashwagandha causes hormonal changes, which might exacerbate problems like hyperthyroidism or excessive testosterone in women.
To avoid ashwagandha side effects, gradually raise your dose while keeping an eye out for any unpleasant responses. If you use pharmaceuticals, talk to your doctor about any possible interactions or concerns before beginning to take herbal supplements.
According to research, ashwagandha is not always safe for and should be avoided by:
- Women who are expecting a child or who are nursing
- People who use diabetic drugs, blood pressure meds, immune-suppressing medications, sedatives, or thyroid treatments.
- Unless under the care of a doctor, anybody being treated for hyperthyroidism.
- Unless working with a doctor, anybody with autoimmune disorders such as multiple sclerosis, lupus, or rheumatoid arthritis.
- People who are having surgery that necessitates anesthesia
It’s also not a good idea to combine ashwagandha with alcohol, mood-altering medications, or sedatives, as it might produce sleepiness and mood swings.
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