herbals ashwagandha

RECND343

Ashwagandha

Scientific:Withania somnifera
Other:Ashwagandha

Indications

Used as an adaptogen in ayurvedic medicine; however, it is calming rather than stimulating.

Nervous
• overstimulated states
- insomnia
- anxiety
- nervous exhaustion
• poor cognition
- memory
- attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD, ADD)
• neurodegenerative disorders
- dementia
- Parkinson's disease
- Alzheimer's disease
• drug withdrawal
- smoking cessation

Cancer
• chemotherapy and radiation side-effects
- fatigue
- immunosuppresion (leukopenia, neutropenia)

Respiratory
• chronic respiratory conditions
- bronchitis
- asthma

Musculoskeletal
myalgia
• rheumatic diseases and connective tissue disorders
- muscle weakness
- fibromylagia
- ostearthritis
- gout

Reproduction (male)
• sexual debility
- erectile dysfunction
- impotence
- infertility

Endocrine
hypothyroidism
chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS)

Actions

adaptogen
sedative
• antiepileptic
nootropic
• sexual tonic
antiinflammatory
anticancer
immunomodulator
• antispasmotic
• neuroprotective
hepatoprotective
• nephroprotective
• antiaging

Constituents

• Terpenoids
• Steroidal glycosides (withanolide)
• Alkaloids

Posology

• Tincture (1:5): 2 ml tid
• Liquid extract (1:2): 2-4 ml tid
• Decoction (dried herb): 3-6 g qd

Safety

Generally considered safe when used as indicated.

Caution: Hyperthyroidism; may stimulate thyroid function.

References

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Barnes J, Anderson LA, Phillipson JD. Herbal Medicines, 3rd ed. London: Pharmaceutical Press, 2007.

Bone K. Principles and Practice of Phytotherapy. Edinburgh: Churchill Livingstone, 2000.

Bone K. A Clinical Guide to Blending Liquid Herbs: Herbal Formulations for the Individual Patient. St Louis, MO: Churchill Livingstone, 2003.

Brinker F. The Toxicology of Botanical Medicines, 3rd ed. Sandy, Oregon: Eclectic Medical Publications, 2000.

Felter HW, Lloyd JU. King's American Dispensatory. 1898. http://www.ibiblio.org/herbmed/eclectic/kings/main.html. Accessed: August 19, 2006.

Hoffman D. Medical Herbalism. Rochester, Vermont: Healing Arts Press, 2003.

Weiss RF. Herbal Medicine. Beaconsfield, England: Beaconsfield Publishers Ltd, 1988.

Williamson EM, ed. Major Herbs of Ayurveda. Edinburgh: Churchill Livingstone, 2002

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