Withania somnifera among Herbal Remedies for Anxiety and Depression
Ashwagandha or Withania somnifera is found to be of great help in anxiety, depression and other psychiatric disorders. This is such a superb botanical that has equally useful for body, mind, and immunity.
Its traditional benefits in Ayurvedic Medicine has been validated by modern herbal research. Anxiety, depression, panic attacks, phobia are very well supported by this herb. Its effect on anxiety and depression is comparable to modern drugs.
In Manic depression, alcoholic paranoia and schizophrenia WS provides some definite relief. Additionally WS was found to be safe even at dosage of 100 mg per kg.
It possesses mild calming, anticonvulsant and antispasmodic effect. Its extract showed some stimulation of Thyroid in mice.
Herbal Remedies for Anxiety and Low Mood – Anxiolytic & Anti-depressant Activity Of Ashwagandha:
Researchers from George Washington University School Of Medicine & Health Sciences, the adult Psychopharmacology program at National Institute Of Mental Health and the San Antonio Chochrane Center reviewed all the traditional literature concerning this ayurvedic herb. They put this herb on clinical trials to determine its safety and effectiveness.
The analysis of results determined that ayurvedic traditional uses of this botanical are validated by clinical and laboratory results. It was found to have anxiolytic and anti-depressant activity. Toxicity studies didn’t reveal any significant adverse effects.
Herbal Remedies for Nervousness – Ashwagandha Supportive In Anxiety Disorders:
In a reported study, it was given in the dose of 40 ml per day to 30 patients of anxiety neurosis for one month. The study concluded that most of anxiety symptoms, panic attacks and phobia were significantly relieved.
Another trial by US Psychiatrists found it to be helpful in the treatment of manic depression, alcoholic paranoia condition and Schizophrenia. It was given in between meals for 60 days in the dose of 4 caps. a day.
Herbal Remedies for Mental and Emotional Wellbeing – Ashwagandha Showing Potential Of Anxiolytic & Antidepressant Effect:
Bhattacharya SK et al found anxiolytic and antidepressant effect in WS extract comparable with standard drugs.
WSG induced an anxiolytic effect, comparable to that produced by lorazepam, in the elevated plus-maze, social interaction and feeding latency in an unfamiliar environment, tests. Further, both WSG and lorazepam, reduced rat brain levels of tribulin, an endocoid marker of clinical anxiety, when the levels were increased following administration of the anxiogenic agent, pentylenetetrazole.
WSG also exhibited an antidepressant effect, comparable with that induced by imipramine, in the forced swim-induced ‘behavioural despair’ and ‘learned helplessness’ tests. The investigations support the use of WS as a mood stabilizer in clinical conditions of anxiety and depression in Ayurveda.
Department of Pharmacology, Institute of Medical Sciences, Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi, India.
Safe Herbal Remedy – Ashwagandha As A Nontoxic Herb Upto 100mg/kg:
Another study from Journal of Ethnopharmacology states that Withania somnifera doesn’t produce any toxicity up to a dose of 100mg per kg. (Phytomedicine 2000, Vol. 6, Drs. Bhattacharya & Ghosal et al, Institute of Medical Sciences, BHU, India)
Herbal Remedies for Neuromuscular Health – Ashwagandha As Calming, Anti-convulsant & Anti-spasmodic Agent:
The combined alkaloids in WS are found to possess calming, anti-convulsant and anti-spasmodic activity against a vast range of spasmogenic agents. Intestinal, bronchial, uterine, tracheal and vascular muscles respond to WS. This effect is qualitatively similar to Papaverine but very mild in strength.
Purification and characterization of a glycoprotein inhibitor of toxic phospholipase from Ashwagandha:
A phospholipase inhibitor (WSG) has been purified from Withania somnifera using gel-filtration and ion-exchange chromatographies. The WSG is an acidic glycoprotein. Its molecular mass as determined by SDS-PAGE was 27kDa. It neutralized the enzyme activity and pharmacological properties such as cytotoxicity, edema, and myotoxicity of a multi-toxic Indian cobra venom phospholipase (NNXIa-PLA) but failed to neutralize the neurotoxicity.
This study reports the purification and characterization of a glycoprotein phospholipase A inhibitor from Withania somnifera, medicinal plant.
Veerabasappa Gowda T.
Department of Studies in Biochemistry, University of Mysore, Manasagangothri, 570 006, Mysore, India.
Herbal Remedy for Suppressed Thyroid – Ashwagandha:
School Of Life Sciences, Indore, India, based researchers studied the Withania somnifera and Bauhinia purpurea in the regulation of circulating thyroid hormone concentrations in female mice.
Both the plant extracts showed an increase in hepatic glucose-6-phosphatase (G-6-Pase) activity and antiperoxidative effects as indicated either by a decrease in hepatic lipid peroxidation (LPO) and/or by an increase in the activity of antioxidant enzyme(s). It appears that these plant extracts are capable of stimulating thyroid function in female mice.
School of Life Sciences, Devi Ahilya University, Vigyan Bhavan, Indore, India.