- Ashwagandha and other adaptogens
- Health benefits of ashwagandha for men
- What are other ashwagandha health benefits?
- How to take ashwagandha for the best results?
Over the years, ashwagandha has earned itself a strong reputation for being able to treat a number of male ailments. Yet is there any truth to its claim that it can stimulate and regulate testosterone production?
In this article, we shall examine all ashwagandha benefits for men, as well as see why it is so popular in male enhancement supplements.
This herb has been used in traditional Indian medicine (Ayurveda – natural healing) for centuries thanks to its ability to improve male strength, vitality and virility.
Yet, whilst ashwagandha does possess adaptogen properties – relieving/managing stress, improving concentration and raising energy levels. It differs from most because it is one of only a few adaptogens that is also associated with masculinity e.g. boosting virility, strength and testosterone levels.
Related article: Does low testosterone cause depression?
However, can it really do all of this? Is one of the benefits of taking ashwagandha increased testosterone production?
Studies do seem to suggest so:
- In a study on men suffering with infertility/low fertility, this potent herb was found to improve sperm quality, as well as offer subtle boosts in testosterone of 10-22%.
- A separate study on healthy men (who weight trained) saw a small increase of 15% in testosterone after taking ashwagandha.
Yet, these are not the only ashwagandha health benefits you can expect…
It also has a knack for regulating hormone levels; improving immunity and supplying you with antidepressant properties, as well as helps to lower blood sugar levels; encourages a healthy weight balance; reduces cortisol; heightens brain function and alleviates symptoms of anxiety and depression.
We’ve talked a little about ashwagandha’s adaptogen properties, including its capacity to promote homeostasis and combat stress. But what other ashwagandha powder benefits for men can you expect?
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Let’s take a look in detail:
- Improved testicular health and fertility
– this ties into the idea that ashwagandha may be able to boost your testosterone levels and in turn improve your sexual health and testicular output (where testosterone is produced).
Now, given that healthy testosterone levels are essential for optimal male health; by strengthening natural testosterone production, this can help to increase sperm counts, improve their motility and ultimately help with fertility.
During a study on 46 men with low sperm counts, they discovered that the Withanolides in ashwagandha helped to increase sperm counts by 167%, as well as improve their sperm quality and antioxidant levels.
In a separate cross-section study on men aged between 22 and 45, they noted that this herb practically eliminated the cause of stress-related infertility, and instead helped 14% of them to successfully conceive with their partners.
Another observation made during these many fertility studies was the fact that ashwagandha helped to trigger significant increases in testosterone.
- Alleviates stress and anxiety
– a common side effect of stress disorders is damage to your immune system PLUS reduced brain/memory function and issues with your gastrointestinal tract. Fortunately, ashwagandha boasts many anxiolytic effects including being able to reduce cortisol levels (a stress hormone). In a study of 64 chronically stressed adults, those given 300mg of ashwagandha twice a day (for 60 days) saw significant drops in cortisol, as well as a 69% reduction in anxiety and insomnia.
A similar study on patients with severe anxiety disorder saw distinct improvements in well-being after taking this herb. In just 6 weeks, 88% of participants reported a drop in anxiety.
Now for men this is great news, as stress, anxiety and depression have all been linked to erectile dysfunction. This means that by helping to reduce symptoms of anxiety, men can experience greater confidence in the bedroom.
- Reduced insomnia and fatigue
– direct links have been made between ashwagandha and sleep. This is due to it containing triethylene glycol, an active component that can help you to fall asleep easier. Combined with its ability to alleviate stress and anxiety, adding ashwagandha to your diet can help you to combat insomnia in the long run.
- Boost physical performance
– there has been some suggestion that certain components in this herb can help to elevate energy output – even in those who don’t normally train. At the same, it can heighten your physical performance in the following areas, including:
- Cardiac endurance
– this type of exercise relates to you using your muscles for a prolonged period of time e.g. swimming, long distance running, cycling or long workouts, etc. Ashwagandha can help to improve your stamina in these scenarios. In fact, during a study on 40 cyclists, those that received 500mg of this herb twice a day (for 8 weeks) showed greater endurance than those who didn’t receive it.
- Improved muscle strength, growth and recovery – during a study on 57 men aged 18-50 years old (who had no previous experience with resistance training), when they received 300mg of this herb for 8 weeks (twice a day), they saw improvements in muscle strength and size. They also benefited from faster recovery rates from exercise induced muscle damage.
Similarly, in another study on healthy men – when they took 750-1250mg of powdered ashwagandha per day, not only did they see reductions in body fat; they gained muscle strength in 30 days.
- Aid in the treatment of prostate cancer – studies have shown that it can reduce cancer cell growth and assist with recovery rates.
Admittedly, a lot of the benefits of ashwagandha do appear to target men. However, it can have positive effects on women too. Ashwagandha can offer the following health benefits to both men and women:
- Reduced anxiety and stress (as discussed above by reducing the release of cortisol – some studies saw a 30% reduction) – it also achieves this by blocking stress pathways and regulating chemical signals in your nervous system.
- Improved cholesterol levels and lowered triglycerides – ashwagandha can help improve the health of your heart by lowering cholesterol, triglycerides and blood fats. A 60 day study revealed a 17% fall in bad cholesterol and a 11% drop in triglycerides.
- Reduced blood sugar levels – during one test-tube study, ashwagandha helped to increase insulin secretion whilst improving insulin sensitivity in muscle cells. Similarly, multiple human studies have shown falls in blood sugar levels in both healthy people and in those with diabetes.
- Contains anti-cancer properties – alongside preventing prostate cancer, ashwagandha can induce apoptosis (the killing/death of cancer cells) and prevent the growth of new cancer cells. It manages this by creating reactive oxygen species (ROS) which is toxic to cancer cells BUT not normal cells. To date, it is reputed to help in the treatment of breast, lung, colon, brain and ovarian cancer. NOTE: a study on mice with ovarian tumors saw a 70-80% reduction in tumor growth after taking this herb (it also stopped them from spreading to other organs).
- Alleviates depression – a 60 day study on 64 stressed adults saw a 79% reduction in severe depression (when they took 600mg of ashwagandha a day).
- Reduced inflammation – research suggests this herb may be able to help lower inflammation by increasing the activity of immune cells (which fight off infection). It can also decrease markers of inflammation i.e. C-reactive protein (that has been linked to heart disease). When 250mg was taken daily, participants saw 36% falls in CRP.
- Improved brain function (including memory) – ashwagandha can help to reduce brain and memory problems caused by disease and injury. By boosting antioxidant activity, it can help protect nerve cells from the harmful effects of free radicals. It is also believed to boost memory. For instance, during one study where participants received 500mg of this herb daily; they witnessed improvements in reaction time and performance. Whilst in another 8 week study, participants given 300mg of ashwagandha a day benefited from greater memory and attention.
As you can see from the various studies listed above – for optimal results, the amount you need to take will depend on what you are using it for. For instance, for ashwagandha and sleep you can take anywhere between 250 and 500mg a day (for at least a month). Whilst for:
- Fertility – 5g per day for 3 months
- Muscle mass and strength – 500mg a day for at least 8 weeks.
- Inflammation – at least 250mg a day
- Memory – 500-600mh per day
Your dosage will also depend on what part of the ashwagandha plant you’re receiving e.g. its extract has been proven to be much more effective than taking ashwagandha root or leaf powder.
For this reason, we strongly recommend reading the label and speaking to your doctor first to make sure you get your dosages right. In addition, we advise sticking to the extract (in supplement form) as this will ensure you benefit from optimal results.
To say that ashwagandha has got its fingers in a lot of pies would be an understatement. Its ashwagandha benefits for men appear to be endless – as seen by the numerous positive studies that exist which all demonstrate its aptitude for supporting heart health, memory, anxiety/stress, strength, muscle development, fertility and physical performance.
But what about testosterone? Is that one of the benefits of ashwagandha? Studies into fertility appear to suggest so. However, more research is needed before a definitive answer can be given.
For that reason, if you’re serious about boosting testosterone, building muscle mass and protecting your health; we recommend sticking with proven testosterone boosters such as TestoGen. Every one of its ingredients has been specially chosen for their ability to stimulate natural testosterone production, and keep you in tip top shape. What more can you ask for?
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