The Sanskrit term Ashwagandha translates to “smell of horse.” Ashwagandha is a medicinal herb that has been used in Ayurvedic and Chinese medicine for thousands of years. It is a small shrub with yellow flowers and red fruit, native to India, North Africa, and the Middle East. It is known as Indian ginseng or winter cherry. It is an adaptogen, which means that it can help the body to manage stress. Ayurvedic medicine uses herbs, special diets, and other natural practices as treatment for a variety of conditions. In Ayurvedic medicine, ashwagandha is considered a Rasayana. That means it’s an herb that helps maintain youth, both mentally and physically.
Not just Ayurveda, Ashwagandha is also used as Unani medicine, Siddha medicine, African medicine, and Homeopathic medicine for treating various ailments. It is also said that ashwagandha can help you in losing those extra kilos. Through its adaptogenic effects, Ashwagandha may help to encourage weight loss when used in combination with other weight loss enhancing supplements. This ancient Ayurvedic herb is believed to be helpful for people who either overeat or undereat due to environmental stress. It also boosts metabolism and eliminates irregularities to digestion.
Here are 7 ways Ashwagandha can help to burn excess fat and shed kilos:
- Antioxidant Effects: The natural antioxidants in ashwagandha may improve overall health and promote better fat burning. Ashwagandha displays natural antimicrobial effects and improves immune function to keep you healthy and able to follow your diet and exercise plan. When an immune function gets compromised by pathogens, the body enters a survival mode, where fat burning simply does not rank highly on your list of priorities.
- Lowers the cortisol levels: Our body secretes a hormone called cortisol in response to stress, and when the cortisol levels are high then this can lead to poor metabolism and many other serious health problems like stroke, diabetes, heart disease, etc. Studies have shown that people with high cortisol levels are likely to develop more abdominal fat than hip fat. Ashwagandha can lower the cortisol level by 26%. This would effectively help you lose unwanted weight and help you feel more confident about yourself.
- Boosts metabolism: The best thing that this herb offers us is its capability to increase the conversion of the T4 hormone (produced by the thyroid), into the active T3 hormone. This would boost your metabolism and help you fight unwanted weight gain. People who suffer from hypothyroidism have seen noticeable results after using this magical herb.
- Regulates the sugar level: Insulin is released in response to elevated cortisol levels. Insulin enables the body to use blood sugar and store it as fat in your body. But ashwagandha improves insulin sensitivity index quite effectively. It lowers the blood sugar level, thereby contributing to losing the unwanted weight. It also lowers down the bad cholesterol, and it is indeed a very powerful ayurvedic herb.
- Control cholesterol levels: Organic Ashwagandha root, with its anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties, is good for cardiovascular problems. It strengthens the heart muscles and can also control cholesterol. A study published by the University of Arizona in the World Journal of Medical Sciences indicated that it possesses hypolipidemic properties that help in bringing down blood cholesterol levels.
- Increases energy levels: Ashwagandha regulates the adrenal; glands and cortisol levels, which ultimately benefits the nervous system. This increases overall energy and helps you during your intense workouts. Ashwagandha also decreases fatigue and increases endurance. It is rich in iron, which improves blood circulation.
- Helps in managing stress: One of the main cause of weight gain these days is the increased level of stress or high cortisol levels. When stressed people tend to binge as increased cortisol levels trigger hunger by stimulating glucose production, this makes your body crave foods to replenish energy. Ashwagandha helps in relieving stress and thus promotes weight loss.
How to consume Ashwagandha for weight loss:
Ashwagandha Powder with Milk: Milk is an important food that is known to possess all the vitamins except Vitamin C. It can be clubbed with Ashwagandha powder to help you reduce weight effectively. The traditional method is to take 1 teaspoon along with a cup of milk at night. Wait for at least 30 minutes after you have taken your food.
- Take 100ml of milk and 1 teaspoon of ashwagandha powder.
- You will also need 100ml of water and 1 teaspoon brown sugar
- Mix all ingredients in a pan. Boil the mixture on a low flame till it reduces to half and drink when lukewarm.
Ashwagandha Tea with cardamon: Cardamom is another fat burning herb that is known to increase metabolism and make the digestive system healthier and faster. This adds a great taste to the tea and makes it even more effective to overcome obesity.
Ingredients: 1teaspoon ashwagandha powder, 2 cardamoms and 2 glass water.
- Add 1 teaspoon of ashwagandha powder in 2 glasses of water and boil it.
- Grind the cardamom and add to the mixture.
- Keep boiling until the quantity becomes half.
- Drink when lukewarm.
- You can consume 1 small cup of ashwagandha tea twice daily.