An ashwagandha plant, which has small, yellow flowers, grows wild in India and northern Africa. The plant’s extracts or powdered roots or leaves are used to treat a wide range of ailments. This herb has grown steadily in popularity and based on research, ashwagandha benefits men in several ways!
What is Ashwagandha?
In Africa, the Middle East, and India, ashwagandha is a perennial shrub native to the region. Its use in traditional medicine can be traced back thousands of years. It is one of the oldest known medical systems globally, and it is a component of India’s overall healthcare system.
People have been using the roots of ashwagandha and the orange-red fruit of the plant as medicinal herbs for hundreds of years. Withania somnifera is the botanical name of ashwagandha, and it is also known as winter cherry and Indian ginseng.
Ashwagandha has been used to relieve stress, increase energy levels, and improve concentration for more than 3,000 years . Furthermore, some genuinely think that this Indian herb may be beneficial in the treatment of certain diseases, certain types of cancer, high blood pressure, and Alzheimer’s disease, among other conditions.
Ashwagandha is classified as a Rasayana in Ayurvedic medicine. It is considered one of the most important drugs in Ayurveda, meaning that it contributes to the preservation of youth, both mentally and physically.
Traditional uses of ashwagandha, as well as the proper dosage and scientific evidence supporting its potential health benefits as well as risks, are discussed in this article.
For instance, people consume ashwagandha to aid in the treatment of the following:
- Muscle mass
- Hair loss
Other plant parts, such as the leaves, seeds, and fruit, are used in various treatments.
This herb is gaining traction in the Western world, and in the United States, ashwagandha is available as a supplement.
7 Benefits Of Ashwagandha For Men
Here are some listed benefits of ashwagandha:
Testosterone is primarily a male hormone, and it provides some critical health benefits. While testosterone levels typically dwindle with age, they can be impacted at any age by life circumstances such as chronic stress. Low testosterone is frequently manifested by:
- Decreased sexual drive
- Erectile dysfunction
- Increased body fat and muscle
- Bone mass loss
- Mood changes
Ashwagandha has a well-deserved reputation for increasing testosterone levels .
In one study, ashwagandha treatment increased sperm count and motility in 75 infertile men. In addition, the treatment resulted in a significant increase in testosterone levels in the patient [3, 4, 5, 6].
The researchers also discovered that the antioxidant levels in the participants’ blood, who consumed the herb, were higher in the study group.
According to another study, men who received ashwagandha for stress were found to have increased antioxidant levels and improved sperm quality. After three months of treatment, 14% of the men’s partners became pregnant due to the treatment .
In short, studies have backed ashwagandha as a possible effective remedy for infertility.
As an aphrodisiac (food that increases sex desire), ashwagandha can stimulate sexual desire . It works by increasing nitric oxide production and blood flow to the genitals, assisting in improved circulation.
Additionally, many people believe that you can seek its assistance if you have erectile dysfunction. However, little research has been conducted on the efficacy of Ashwagandha for erectile dysfunction (ED). Let us examine what research studies have concluded thus far.
A 2011 study examined the use of ashwagandha for psychogenic ED, and this condition is primarily associated with sexual anxiety and concerns about sexual performance .
For 60 days, 86 men with psychogenic ED were randomly assigned to receive ashwagandha or a placebo. By and large, ashwagandha provided no more relief from ED than the placebo. The same research group confirmed these findings in a 2014 follow-up analysis .
Hence, scientific evidence does not back the efficacy of this herb for ED, though there is a possibility it may help with low libido (sexual desire).
According to the results of a study designed to determine the optimal ashwagandha dosage that is both safe and effective, healthy men who consumed 750–1,250 mg of powdered ashwagandha root daily experienced an increase in muscle strength after just 30 days .
An additional study discovered that people who took ashwagandha saw significantly greater muscle strength and size gains than those who did not. Additionally, compared to the placebo group, it resulted in a greater than twofold reduction in body fat percentage .
Stress and Anxiety
Being classified as an adaptogen, the most well-known property of ashwagandha is its ability to alleviate stress.
According to researchers, It worked by regulating chemical signaling in the nervous system to block the stress pathway in the brains of rats and mice .
Researchers found that people who took ashwagandha for 60 days experienced an average reduction in anxiety and insomnia instead of those given a placebo, who experienced an average reduction of only 11% . Another 6-week study led to similar conclusions .
Additionally, a study conducted in India found that ashwagandha may be more effective in treating anxiety symptoms than sedative and anxiety medications, such as lorazepam . And based on research conducted in 2000, ashwagandha had an anxiety-relieving effect that was comparable to lorazepam but this study, on the other hand, was carried out on mice rather than humans .
Other than that, two human studies conducted in 2019 showed that ashwagandha reduced stress and cortisol levels.[18, 19].While this research is encouraging, more research is required before the herb can be recommended for use in the treatment of anxiety .
In short, numerous studies have suggested that this herb may help tackle anxiety and stress, though further research is warranted to confirm this.
May Reduce Symptoms of Depression
According to a randomized controlled study, 64stressed adults who took 600 mg of ashwagandha extract daily for 60 days reported a 79% reduction in severe depression .
However, only one participant in this study had a history of depression, which limited the study results. As a result, the significance of the findings is debatable.
Ashwagandha helps in preventing hair loss.
Prevent Hair Loss
Stress hormones such as cortisol have a detrimental effect on the proper functioning of your hair follicles, eventually resulting in hair loss. Ashwagandha can be a quick fix for regulating cortisol levels in the body and thus preventing follicle damage and hair loss. The herb has natural mood-enhancing properties that help prevent hair loss by reducing anxiety and stress .
Strengthens Your Hair
Ashwagandha increases DHEA production (Dehydroepiandrosterone), a naturally occurring hormone in the body that functions as a powerful antioxidant . As a result, ashwagandha aids in the elimination of free radicals from the scalp and hair follicles, thereby promoting healthy hair growth.
Enhances Your Scalp And Hair Nourishment
Ashwagandha flavonoids are an excellent source of protein, vitamin C, iron, glucose, tannins, potassium, and nitrate, all of which are necessary for healthy hair growth.
Conditions Your Scalp And Hair
Ashwagandha’s stimulation of DHEA (Dehydroepiandrosterone) production can boost collagen and sebum production on the scalp. This moisturizes your scalp and hair texture while repairing dry, brittle hair. Additionally, collagen and sebum protect your scalp and hair from sun damage .
Controls Your Scalp Irritation
Ashwagandha’s potent anti-inflammatory properties help to maintain the overall health of your hair follicles [22,23,24]. It alleviates scalp conditions such as dandruff, itching, psoriasis, eczema, and other inflammatory allergies.
Reverses Premature Greying Of Hair
Ashwagandha contains an amino acid called ‘Tyrosine,’ which aids in the stimulation of melanin production in your hair follicles . This allows you to replenish your hair’s melanin levels and reverse premature hair greying.
FAQ: Ashwagandha Benefits For Men
How should I take ashwagandha?
The dosage of ashwagandha and how it is administered differ depending on the condition being treated. Based on clinical trials conducted in the modern era, there is no standard dosage for ashwagandha.
Typical ashwagandha capsule dosages range between 250 and 1,500 mg per capsule, depending on the manufacturer. The herb is available in three different forms: capsules, powder, and liquid extract.
Excessive doses of medication may cause unpleasant side effects in some people in some situations. It is recommended that you consult with a healthcare professional before taking any new herbal supplement, including ashwagandha, to ensure that it is safe and effective.
Is it safe to take ashwagandha daily?
The herb ashwagandha should be avoided during pregnancy because it has been shown to cause fetal distress and premature labor in some women.
Furthermore, Ayurvedic herbs are not regulated by the Food and Drug Administration, which presents a potential problem (FDA). This means that they are not subject to the same level of regulatory oversight as food producers and pharmaceutical companies.
In some cases, herbs may contain impurities like heavy metals, while they may be completely devoid of the herb in other cases. Before purchasing any product, consumers should research the company that made the product in question.
Certain Ayurvedic products may consist of arsenic, mercury, and lead levels higher than what is considered safe for daily human consumption by health professionals, according to the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health.
How quickly does ashwagandha work?
When combined with a healthy lifestyle, ashwagandha may begin to benefit the body within two weeks.
Who should not take ashwagandha?
Consult your physician before using ashwagandha if you have any of the following:
- Hyperthyroidism (overactive thyroid)
Avoid consuming ashwagandha if you are:
- Having hormone-sensitive prostate cancer
- Taking sedatives
- Are pregnant or breastfeeding
Is ashwagandha bad for kidneys?
Herbal supplements are widely used and can cause kidney injury via various mechanisms, including tubular damage and interstitial nephritis when taken in large doses. As such, it is prudent to consult your physician before beginning any herbal supplementation.
Bottomline: Ashwagandha For Men
Ashwagandha is a traditional medicinal herb that has a plethora of health benefits. It has been shown to alleviate anxiety and stress, increase male fertility and testosterone, aid in the fight against depression, and even improve brain function.
To improve your health and quality of life, you may find that taking ashwagandha supplements is a simple and effective solution.
Disclaimer: This article is only a guide. It does not substitute the advice given by your own healthcare professional. Before making any health-related decision, consult your healthcare professional.