Bio-Ashwagandha (Support for healthy adrenals, cognitive and immune function) 60 Caps
Bio-Ashwagandha from Biotics Research Corp.
Among Ashwagandha's primary active components are mild-acting calming alkaloids. These steroidal lactones provide significant adaptogenic effects. Some of these lactones (withanolides) have been reported to be structurally similar to ginsenosides from ginseng, and are used to provide support for healthy adrenal, cognitive and immune system function, as well as providing relief for menstrual discomfort.*
Used for centuries in traditional medicine, the multiple mechanisms of action and clinical relevance of Ashwagandha were summarized in a recent review published in Pharmaceutics. Both the in vitro and preclinical trials (which help to elucidate mechanisms), as well as controlled clinical trials, offer support for some of the traditional uses, including its primary role as an adaptogen. Adaptogens are typically considered to provide a non-specific resistance against various stressors through ill-defined pathways, but many of the specific actions of Ashwagandha have now been elucidated.
For example, the antioxidant effects and anti-amyloid actions of Withaferin A (a steroidal lactone metabolite of ashwagandha) as well as its support for a healthy inflammatory response help to explain the neuroprotective effects observed in experimental models. Additionally, ashwagandha has been shown to increase levels of BDNF in model systems, though unfortunately no human clinical trials related to neurodegenerative conditions have been conducted. Similarly, no controlled clinical trials exist related to glucose control or insulin sensitivity, yet several mechanisms are suggested in the Pharmaceutics review, as well as one non-peer-reviewed clinical trial which hints at possible benefit.
An area for which more clinical trial data exists is related to stress, anxiety, and mental health. A systematic review published in 2022 included 12 randomized controlled trials (RCTs) and over 1,000 study participants found that supplementation at doses of 300-600 mg per day was associated with significant reductions in both stress and anxiety, with a dose-dependent effect (maxing out at around 12 g per day). Small clinical trials also suggest possible adjunctive benefits for stress and other related conditions when combined with SSRI treatment.
Given the general and wide-spectrum health-promoting effects that traditional practitioners attribute to ashwagandha, evidence that sleep may be supported with supplementation provides another possible mechanism, as good quality sleep has been associated with improved functioning of nearly every body system, including cardiometabolic, neurological, and cognitive health.
A systematic review of 5 RCTs and 400 participants found a small but significant improvement in overall sleep with supplementation, with greater effects for each of the following: among participants with insomnia, at doses of 600 mg or more per day, or with treatment duration of 8 weeks or more. Improvements in sleep efficiency, latency, and overall sleep duration were reported.
Another notable effect of ashwagandha with good clinical data is related to physical health and performance. A systematic review of 12 clinical trials published in 2021 found that at doses between 120-1250 mg per day, supplementation was associated with improved physical performance in both men and women, including parameters such as strength/power, cardiorespiratory fitness, and fatigue/recovery, with benefits observed in athletes and non-athletes.
Given the improvements in both sleep and physical health and performance, as well as a reduction in stress and anxiety, it could be speculated that many of the “adaptogenic” benefits of ashwagandha may be mediated through any or all of these influences.
Dosages and Warnings:
One (1) capsule each day as a dietary supplement or as otherwise directed by a healthcare professional.
CAUTION: Not recommended for pregnant or lactating women.
KEEP OUT OF REACH OF CHILDREN