Finding ways to manage the frustrations of modern life can be an all-consuming task for some. Technology, traffic, holidays, finances, diet and exercise all contribute to everyday stress, and that is an unavoidable part of life. But persistently high levels of chronic stress and anxiety canlead to serious health issues, so exploring ways to manage stress is extremely important to overall health and well-being. While some people have healthy coping mechanisms, like meditation and exercise, others resort to alcohol, prescription medication and food as a crutch. For those exploring alternative stress-reducing options, research supportsashwagandha as an effective, natural way to help reduce stress that doesn’t have the negative physical effects of drinking too much or eating too many sugary, processed or fried foods.
Originating in India many centuries ago,ashwagandhais an herb used as an all-inclusive solution for a variety of mental and physical problems. Recently, scientists have discovered the herb contains anti-inflammatory and antioxidant elements as well, both of which are factors explaining the wide range of ashwagandha benefits.
One of the most highly regarded advantages of ashwagandha is its capacity to serve as a completely natural remedy for stress and anxiety.
In a 12-week study investigating the potential of ashwagandha to combat stress and anxiety, 75 individuals plagued with anxiety were split up into two groups, with one getting ashwagandha supplements and naturopathic care and the other being treated with conventional psychotherapy procedures. After 12-weeks of research and testing, researchers assessed the patient’s rates of anxiety, leading them to discover that the group given ashwagandha supplements had reduced anxiety levels by 55 percent. On the other hand, the other group receiving traditional methods of care only decreased anxiety levels by 30%. Major discrepancies among the two groups were also noted to appear when researchers examined levels of concentration, social functioning, and vitality with results indicating better outcomes for the group given the ashwagandha supplements.
Nearly as impressive as ashwagandha’s benefits are its lack of side effects. When compared to anti-anxiety and anti-depression medication, many of which are prone to cause a host of side effects, many individuals appreciate ashwagandha for its ability to ease stress without inducing other ailments.
In addition to improving chronic stress and anxiety,researchindicates ashwagandha can help improve adrenal functioning. The endocrine glands are responsible for distributing hormones, particularly cortisol and adrenaline, so regulating the release of these stress hormones into your body helps prevent adrenal fatigue. When the adrenal glands are worn out, other hormones in the body might also be affected, which can disrupt fertility and deplete levels of hormones associated overall body health.
Not only does ashwagandha help those who endure anxiety and long-term stress, but it can also be beneficial for those who experience symptoms of depression. Since stress is a well-known cause of both acute and chronic depression, ashwagandha can serve as a natural method of combatting the symptoms of depression. An experimentalstudy in 2000 sought to compare the efficiency of ashwagandha to an anti-depression medication known as imipramine. During their research, analysts discovered the effectiveness of ashwagandha was proportionate to the overall effectiveness of mood stabilizers. Researchers then affirmed the ability of ashwagandha to be utilized as a mood-stabilizer in instances of clinical depression.
Further supporting the evidence that ashwagandha is effective in stress relief, the extremely potent high-dose variation of ashwagandha,KSM-66 Ashwagandha, has been studied in 22 gold-standard human clinical trials.One study in particular that followed 64 adults showed that the KSM-66 Ashwagandha root safely and effectively improved resistance to stress. Particularly relevant to holiday stress, KSM-66 can help to reduce stress-related food cravings! While helping to stave off non-hunger-related food cravings year-round is important, during the holidays there are many more opportunities to load up on sugar and fatty foods.