Herbal Ashwagandha Inhibits Anxiety Induced by Chronic Stress

By Kyle J. Norton

Chronic stress is the response to emotional pressure in demanding situations over a period of time, leading to the release of hormone cortisol and adrenaline.

Most common factors associated with stress incidence include psychological pressures, such as work deadlines, and exams, high-pressure jobs, and financial difficulties.

Overtime unresolved chronic stress can cause a wide range of symptoms and increase the risk of anxiety.

Anxiety disorder is a class of medical conditions associated with chronic worries and fear, leading to symptoms of the fast heart rate and shakiness.

Most people with anxiety may experience the feeling of nervousness in responding to events such as a problem at work, before taking a test, or before making an important decision.

According to the statistics, anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in Canada and approximately 1 in every 8 Canadians is affected by the illness. In other words, over 250,000 people in Canada suffer from anxiety.

Most common prevalent factors that induce the risk of the condition are, family history, gender (women are more likely diagnosed with the condition compared to men), chronic stress, people with traumatic life experiences and the use of substances are some prevalent risk factors of anxiety.

However, some researchers suggested a moderate physical activity, mind-body practices of breathing exercises, yoga, and meditation have been found to reduce stress, a strong positive impact against anxiety.

The Anxiety and Depression Association of America wrote, “Whether, in good times or bad, most people say that stress interferes at least moderately with their lives. Chronic stress can affect your health, causing symptoms from headaches, high blood pressure, and chest pain to heart palpitations, skin rashes, and loss of sleep”.

“Physical activity is a proven way to reduce stress. Regular participation in aerobic exercise has been shown to decrease overall levels of tension, elevate and stabilize mood, and improve sleep and self-esteem. Other effective methods include mind-body practices of breathing exercises, yoga, and meditation”.

Ashwagandha also is known as Withania somnifera is a nightshade plant in the genus of Withania, belonging to the family Solanaceae, native to the dry parts of India, North Africa, Middle East, and the Mediterranean.

The herbal medicine has been considered as Indian ginseng and used in Ayurvedic medicine over 3000 years to treat tumors and tubercular glands, carbuncles, memory loss, and ulcers and considered as anti-stress, cognition-facilitating, anti-inflammatory, and anti-aging herbal medicine.

On finding a potent compound for the treatment of symptoms associated with chronic stress, researchers examined the efficacy of a high-concentration full-spectrum extract of Ashwagandha roots in reducing stress and anxiety in adults who were under stress.

A total of 64 subjects with a history of chronic stress included were randomized to either drug treatment group and were asked to take one capsule containing 300 mg of high-concentration full-spectrum extract from the root of the Ashwagandha plant or the placebo control group. twice a day for a period of 60 days.

Based on the results of the tested analysis, the treatment group received a high-concentration full-spectrum Ashwagandha root extract showed a significant reduction in scores on all the stress-assessment scales on Day 60 comapred to placebo.

The serum cortisol levels were substantially reduced in the Ashwagandha group, comapred to the placebo group.

According to the patient’s reports, there are no serious adverse events reported during the experimental period.

In other words, the short-term application of the Ashwagandha plant at a high concentration not only reduced the levels of c stress but also stress-induced hormone expression of anxiety.

Based on the findings, researchers said, “a high-concentration full-spectrum Ashwagandha root extract safely and effectively improves an individual’s resistance towards stress and thereby improves self-assessed quality of life”.

Taken altogether, Ashwagandha may be considered a functional herb for the prevention of anxiety induced by chronic stress, pending to the result of larger sample size and multicenter study

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Author Biography
Kyle J. Norton (Scholar, Master of Nutrition, All right reserved)

Health article writer and researcher; Over 10.000 articles and research papers have been written and published online, including worldwide health, ezine articles, article base, health blogs, self-growth, best before it’s news, the karate GB daily, etc.,.
Named TOP 50 MEDICAL ESSAYS FOR ARTISTS & AUTHORS TO READ by Disilgold.com Named 50 of the best health Tweeters Canada – Huffington Post
Nominated for shorty award over last 4 years
Some articles have been used as references in medical research, such as international journal Pharma and Bioscience, ISSN 0975-6299.

(1) An alternative treatment for anxiety: a systematic review of human trial results reported for the Ayurvedic herb ashwagandha (Withania somnifera) by Pratte MA1, Nanavati KB, Young V, Morley CP. (PubMed)
(2) A prospective, randomized double-blind, placebo-controlled study of safety and efficacy of a high-concentration full-spectrum extract of ashwagandha root in reducing stress and anxiety in adults by Chandrasekhar K1, Kapoor J, Anishetty S. (PubMed)
(3) Stress by the Anxiety and Depression Association of America