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Ashwagandha: Beauty benefits of this powerful herb you didn't know about

Ashwagandha extracts are available in powdered form or as capsules.

Ashwagandha, called the Indian ginseng, is gaining popularity when it comes to skincare and other beauty products in recent times. Here's the reason why.

The abundance of antioxidants, iron and amino acids, makes Ashwagandha one of the most powerful herbs in Ayurvedic healing. This magical herb has been linked to a plethora of health benefits, such as lowering stress and anxiety, relieving pain, reducing inflammation, improving sleep quality, treating skin diseases, etc.

Ashwagandha is an evergreen shrub found mainly in India, the Middle East, and parts of Africa. Also known as the Indian ginseng or winter cherry, the roots and orange-red fruit of this herb have been used for hundreds of years for various medicinal purposes.

The name, ashwagandha, is a combination of two Sanskrit words ashva, meaning horse, and gandha, meaning smell. Traditionally, it is believed that consumption of this herb will give a horse-like strength and vitality. In Ayurvedic medicine, ashwagandha is considered a Rasayana, i.e. rejuvenation. It is believed to help maintain youth, both mentally and physically.

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Ashwagandha has hormone balancing, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant properties. As a result, it is used to prevent and treat a number of diseases. The herb is also popularly used as a natural remedy for various skin and hair problems. Below we have listed some beauty benefits of ashwagandha.

Turn to ashwagandha for your beauty problems

Ashwagandha is the solution to your wrinkled, dry, sagging skin. Its antioxidant properties help protect the skin against free radicals, which can damage your skin's DNA and cause premature aging.

Glowing skin

Ashwagandha stimulates the production of DHEA (dehydroepiandrosterone), a hormone produced by your body's adrenal glands. This hormone in turn helps produce testosterone and estrogen and stimulates the production of natural skin oils. Ashwagandha also promotes the production of vital compounds and proteins for healthy and glowing skin such as hyaluronan, elastin and collagen. Thanks to its anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory properties, it is found effective in treating acne.

How to use it - Ashwagandha is available in capsules, powders, or as a liquid extract. You can use the liquid/powder as a toner with dried ginger and lemon.

Healthy Hair

It is believed that ashwagandha can improve circulation in the scalp, support healthy hair growth, strengthen the hair, and help fight dandruff. This is the reason ashwagandha powder is often used in shampoos and conditioners.

Further, it is also known to stimulate production of melanin, the pigment responsible for the colour of your hair. Because of this ability, some suggest that the herb may help reverse greying of hair. What's more, ashwagandha may help prevent or control hair loss. This means ashwagandha is a secret to shinier and healthier hair.

Side effects of taking ashwagandha

There's not a standard dosage for use of ashwagandha. But some experts say it may be used in powdered form in dosages ranging from 450 milligrams to 2 grams, depending on the condition you're trying to treat.

Ashwagandha is generally considered safe in small to medium doses and there are not many evidences on its possible side effects. However, pregnant women should avoid using ashwagandha because it can cause early delivery.

Some clinical studies have linked ashwagandha supplements to mild to moderate side effects such as headache, sleepiness, and stomach upset.

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