Ashwagandha is an incredibly powerful medicinal herb. Ashwagandha in Sanskrit translates to “smell of the horse”, referring to both its unique smell and ability to increase strength.
Ashwagandha has been used by Ayurvedic practitioners for over 3,000 years and features flavonoids and steroidal lactones called Withanaloides. Withanaloides are believed to help support a healthy response to stress, to bolster mental and mood outlook, immunity and energy levels.
Ashwagandha is an adaptogenic herb that helps the body adapt to fight the effects of stress, including the stress hormone cortisol, which has been implicated in numerous health issues.
Ashwagandha also provides all sorts of other benefits for your dog’s body and brain including increased energy, better sleep, less fatigue, lower blood sugar levels, promote healthy lipid profiles and help fight symptoms of anxiety and depression.
11 Science Informed Reasons to Include Ashwagandha in Your Dog’s Diet:
- It’s an Ancient Medicinal Herb – Ashwagandha is a prominent herb in Indian Ayurvedic medicine and has become a popular supplement due to its health benefits. (1)
- It Can Reduce Blood Sugar Levels – Ashwagandha may reduce blood sugar levels through its effects on insulin secretion and sensitivity and has been shown to be as effective as an oral diabetes medication. (2, 3, 4, 5, 6,)
- It Has Anti-Cancer Properties – animal and test-tube studies have shown that ashwagandha promotes the death of tumour cells and may be effective against several types of cancer. (7, 8 , 9, 10, 11, 12, 13)
- It Can Reduce Cortisol (Stress Hormone) Levels – Ashwagandha may help lower cortisol levels in chronically stressed dogs. (3, 14, 15)
- It May Help Reduce Stress and Anxiety – Ashwagandha has been shown to reduce stress and anxiety in both animal and human studies. (14, 16, 17, 18)
- It May Reduce Symptoms of Depression – the limited research available suggests that ashwagandha may help reduce depression. (14, 18)
- It Can Boost Testosterone and Increase Fertility in Males – Ashwagandha helps increase testosterone levels and significantly boosts sperm quality and fertility in males. (15, 19, 20, 21)
- It May Increase Muscle Mass and Strength – Ashwagandha has been shown to increase muscle mass, reduce body fat and increase strength in males. (4, 20, 22)
- It May Reduce Inflammation – Ashwagandha has been shown to increase natural killer cell activity and decrease markers of inflammation. (3, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27)
- It May Lower Cholesterol and Triglycerides – Ashwagandha may help reduce the risk of heart disease by decreasing cholesterol and triglyceride levels. (3, 4, 5, 6, 28)
- It May Improve Brain Function, Including Memory – Ashwagandha may improve brain function, memory, reaction times and the ability to perform tasks. (29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34)