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Do you know this magical herb which is 5000 years old?

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Ashwagandha

It’s Ashwagandha!

Ashwagandha, one of the most powerful herbs in Ayurvedic healing, has been used since ancient times for a wide variety of conditions and is most well-known for its restorative benefits.

In Sanskrit ashwagandha means “the smell of a horse,”. This indicates that the herb has the potential to impart the vigour and strength of a stallion. The ashwagandha root is also reported to have a smell reminiscent of horse sweat.

Ashwagandha is a potent plant extract that can be taken for stress support. It grows as a shrub mostly in Africa, the Middle East, India, and China. It has yellow flowers and red berries that resemble raspberries. As an adaptogenic herb, one of the benefits of ashwagandha is that it can help you deal with occasional stress.

In Ayurvedic, ashwagandha is referred to as, “Indian ginseng,” and has been used for 5,000 years for relieving stress and helping calm the mind and body.

ashwagandha-plant-with-red-berryThe magical herb is considered to be nature’s gift to mankind. For centuries, Ayurvedic medicine has used it to treat people for their day-to-day woes such as stress, anxiety, exhaustion, lack of sleep, etc.
With an abundance of antioxidants, iron, and amino acids. Above all, it’s no surprise that it is one of the most powerful herbs in Ayurvedic healing.

It is classified as a Rasayana i.e. rejuvenation in Ayurveda and expected to promote physical and mental health. Restoring the body and increase longevity. Subsequently, it has been glorified over time for its dual capacity to energize and calm at the same time.

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Charlotte
Charlotte

Charlotte is a health, beauty and wellness blogger and a mother of two, who lives between India and London

Charlotte is a health, beauty and wellness blogger and a mother of two, who lives between India and London

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Food & Recipes

Avocado Seed Benefits: Is It Safe & Healthy To Eat?

Avocado fruit is itself very creamy with a large number of benefits to health. But do you know the seed of the avocado is also extremely beneficial for your health?

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Avocado & Avocado seeds

Avocado is a nutritious fruit known for its creamy texture and rich flavor. It is packed with healthy fats, fiber, vitamins, and minerals, making it a popular choice for various dishes and snacks.

While avocados have beneficial properties, their seeds are often discarded. However, some individuals argue that avocado seeds are edible and contain a variety of beneficial compounds.

However, some individuals question the safety of consuming an avocado seed. Are Avocado seeds good for you?

Most of the time we remove the seed from the avocado and eat the creamy part. Once you read this article, you will never toss off the avocado seed again.

What is Avocado seed?

An avocado seed, also known as a pit or stone, is a large, hard seed found at the center of the avocado fruit. Despite being commonly discarded, avocado seeds are edible and offer a range of potential health benefits.

Nutritional Value:

Avocado seeds are rich in antioxidants, including phenolic compounds, flavonoids, and proanthocyanidins, which help protect cells from damage caused by free radicals.

They also contain dietary fiber, which aids in digestion and helps maintain bowel regularity.

Additionally, avocado seeds are a good source of potassium, magnesium, and calcium, essential minerals that support overall health.

Are Avocado Pits Poisonous?

Avocado pits, while not inherently poisonous, contain compounds that can be harmful in large quantities. The pit of an avocado contains a substance called persin, which is toxic to animals like dogs, cats, horses, and birds in high doses. However, humans can consume avocado pits safely in small amounts after proper processing.

AvocadoWhen eaten raw, avocado pits are hard and indigestible, posing a choking hazard. However, when processed and ground into a powder or incorporated into recipes, avocado pits can be consumed safely. It’s essential to ensure the pit is thoroughly cleaned, dried, and ground into a fine powder before consumption to avoid any adverse effects.

Despite the potential health benefits of avocado pits, such as their high antioxidant content and potential cholesterol-lowering effects, it’s crucial to exercise caution and moderation when consuming them. As with any food, it’s best to consult with a healthcare professional before adding avocado pits to your diet, especially if you have any underlying health conditions or concerns.

Benefits Of Avocado Seeds

Avocado seeds, often overlooked and discarded, are packed with a plethora of health benefits that can complement your overall well-being. Here’s a detailed exploration of the benefits of avocado seeds:

1. Nutrient Powerhouse:

Avocado seeds are a rich source of essential nutrients, including fiber, antioxidants, healthy fats, vitamins, and minerals. These nutrients contribute to various aspects of health and vitality.

2. Digestive Health:

The high fiber content in avocado seeds promotes digestive health by supporting regular bowel movements, preventing constipation, and maintaining gut health. Eating avocado seeds can aid in optimizing digestion and promoting a healthy gastrointestinal system.

3. Antioxidant Properties:

Avocado seeds are abundant in antioxidants, such as phenolic compounds and flavonoids, which help combat oxidative stress and inflammation in the body. These antioxidants protect cells from damage caused by free radicals, thus reducing the risk of chronic diseases and supporting overall health.

4. Heart Health:

The healthy fats found in avocado seeds, particularly monounsaturated fats, contribute to heart health by helping to lower LDL (bad) cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases. Incorporating avocado seeds into your diet can support heart health and improve lipid profiles.

5. Immune Support:

Avocado seeds contain vitamins and minerals, including vitamin C and vitamin E, which play crucial roles in supporting immune function and defending the body against infections and illnesses. Eating avocado seeds can help strengthen the immune system and promote overall immunity.

6. Bone Health:

Avocado seeds are a good source of minerals like potassium, magnesium, and calcium, which are essential for maintaining bone health and preventing conditions like osteoporosis. Regular consumption of avocado seeds can contribute to stronger bones and reduced risk of fractures.

7. Weight Management:

The fiber-rich composition of avocado seeds can aid in weight management by promoting satiety, reducing appetite, and supporting healthy weight loss. Including avocado seeds in your diet may help curb cravings and prevent overeating, leading to better weight management outcomes.

8. Skin and Hair Benefits:

The antioxidants and healthy fats present in avocado seeds can benefit skin and hair health by promoting hydration, combating signs of aging, and supporting overall skin and hair vitality. Applying avocado seed oil topically or consuming avocado seeds internally can contribute to healthier skin and hair.

9. Reducing cravings

The fibers in avocado seeds help in rising your satiety level. This in turn helps to minimize your cravings as well as encourage fat loss. Along with this, it also aids in removing toxins by improving the absorption of nutrients as well as metabolism. Therefore, helping your body get better internally.

Incorporating avocado seeds into your diet can be done in various ways, such as blending them into smoothies, grinding them into powder for use in recipes, or infusing them into teas or beverages. However, it’s essential to ensure that avocado seeds are properly prepared before consumption to remove any bitter taste and potential toxins. Overall, avocado seeds are a valuable addition to a balanced and nutritious diet, offering a wide range of health benefits for optimal well-being.

How To Eat Avocado Seeds?

To eat avocado seeds, follow these steps:

1. Remove the seed:

Cut open the avocado lengthwise and carefully remove the seed using a spoon. Be cautious as the seed is slippery and can be challenging to handle.

2. Clean the seed:

Rinse the avocado seed thoroughly under cold water to remove any avocado flesh or residue.

3. Dry the seed:

Pat the seed dry with a clean towel or paper towel to remove excess moisture.

4. Prepare the seed:

There are several methods to prepare avocado seeds for consumption:
– Drying: Allow the seed to air dry for a few days until it hardens. Once dry, you can grind it into a powder using a spice grinder or food processor.
– Roasting: Roast the seed in the oven at a low temperature (around 200°F or 95°C) for 2-3 hours until it becomes hard and brittle. Then, grind it into a powder.
– Boiling: Place the seed in boiling water for 10-15 minutes to soften it. Once softened, remove the seed from the water, allow it to cool, and then peel off the outer skin before consuming.

5. Consume the seed:

Once prepared, you can consume avocado seeds in various ways, such as:
– Adding to smoothies: Grind the seed into a fine powder and mix it into your favorite smoothie recipe for an added nutritional boost.
– Brewing as tea: Steep ground avocado seed powder in hot water to make a nutrient-rich tea.
– Incorporating into recipes: Use avocado seed powder as a healthy ingredient in recipes like baked goods, soups, or salad dressings.
– Eating raw: Some people enjoy eating avocado seeds raw, although they have a slightly bitter taste and a tough texture.

Remember to start with a small amount of avocado seed and gradually increase your intake to assess your tolerance and preferences. Additionally, consult with a healthcare professional before incorporating avocado seeds into your diet, especially if you have any underlying health conditions or concerns.

About the author

Charlotte
Charlotte

Charlotte is a health, beauty and wellness blogger and a mother of two, who lives between India and London

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Food & Recipes

Going Bananas for Health: How Eating Bananas Can Transform Your Well-Being

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why consume bananas

Bananas, the delightful yellow fruit that comes perfectly packaged by nature, are often overlooked as just a convenient snack. However, beneath that peel lies a powerhouse of nutrients and health benefits that can truly transform your overall well-being. From energy-boosting properties to digestive health and stress reduction, bananas have a lot to offer. Let’s dive deeper into why going bananas for health is a wise choice:

8 Benefits of Eating Bananas

1. A Natural Energy Booster:

When you need a quick energy boost, reach for a banana. The carbohydrates in bananas provide rapid, easily digestible energy, making them an excellent choice for pre-or post-workout snacks. The natural sugars in bananas, including glucose, fructose, and sucrose, provide an instant and sustained lift in energy levels.
Bananas are also a great source of vitamins and minerals like vitamin B6 and manganese, which are essential for energy metabolism. They help convert the food you eat into usable energy, keeping you energized throughout the day.Bananas for post workout

2. Blood Pressure Regulation:

High blood pressure is a significant health concern, but the potassium content in bananas can help keep it in check. A potassium-rich diet is associated with a reduced risk of hypertension, ultimately benefiting your heart and overall health.
Potassium is a key player in maintaining healthy blood pressure levels by counteracting the effects of sodium. It relaxes blood vessel walls, which reduces tension in your arteries and lowers blood pressure.banana benefits for Blood pressure regulation

3. Heart Health:

In addition to potassium and fiber, bananas contain antioxidants and other heart-healthy compounds. Regular consumption of bananas can contribute to a healthier heart by helping to lower cholesterol levels and maintain cardiovascular well-being.
The fiber in bananas aids in removing excess cholesterol from the bloodstream. This can reduce the risk of developing arterial plaques, which can lead to heart disease.banana for Heart Health

4. Weight Management:

If you’re looking to manage your weight, bananas can be your ally. They are both filling and relatively low in calories, making them an ideal snack choice. Their satisfying nature can prevent overeating and support your weight management goals.
Bananas are also rich in resistant starch, a type of dietary fiber that resists digestion. This can help you feel full for longer periods, reducing overall calorie intake.Weight Management

5. Packed with Essential Nutrients:

Bananas are often considered a humble fruit, but they are, in fact, packed with essential nutrients that contribute to overall health. They are an excellent source of vitamin C, which supports the immune system, aids in wound healing, and promotes healthy skin. Additionally, bananas are rich in vitamin B6, essential for brain development and function. This nutrient helps in the synthesis of neurotransmitters, such as serotonin and dopamine, which regulate mood.

Furthermore, bananas are an abundant source of potassium, a vital mineral for maintaining proper muscle function and regulating blood pressure. Consuming potassium-rich foods like bananas is associated with reduced risk factors for heart disease. Bananas also provide dietary fiber, aiding digestion and promoting regular bowel movements.Essential nutrients

6. Skin and Hair Benefits:

Bananas aren’t just a treat for your taste buds; they’re also a boon for your skin and hair. Their vitamin C content contributes to healthier, more radiant skin by promoting collagen production, which aids in maintaining skin’s elasticity and preventing premature aging. The antioxidants in bananas protect the skin from oxidative stress and damage caused by free radicals.

For your hair, bananas offer a range of benefits. The nutrients in bananas, including vitamins A, C, and E, and minerals like potassium, strengthen hair follicles, reducing breakage and split ends. A banana hair mask can enhance hair softness and shine, making it a natural conditioner.banana benefits for Skin and Hair

7. Immune System Support:

Bananas play a role in supporting a robust immune system due to their vitamin C content. Vitamin C is an essential antioxidant that assists in protecting cells from damage, facilitating the body’s natural defense mechanisms. A strengthened immune system is better equipped to fend off infections and illnesses.banana benefits for Immune system

8. Versatile Culinary Ingredient:

Bananas are incredibly versatile in the culinary world. While they are delightful to eat on their own, they also serve as a versatile ingredient in a variety of dishes like banana chips, pancakes, and smoothies. You can use bananas to sweeten smoothies and baked goods naturally. They add creaminess to desserts and can even be incorporated into savory dishes like curries and stews, providing a unique flavor profile. Their adaptability in the kitchen makes them a valuable addition to any diet, enhancing not only taste but also nutritional value. Incorporating bananas into your daily meals can lead to a tastier and healthier culinary experience.Banana oat pancake

Banana Healthy Recipe Idea:

Banana-Oat Pancakes
Try this nutritious and delicious recipe for banana-oat pancakes:

Ingredients:
2 ripe bananas, mashed
1 cup old-fashioned oats
2 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
A pinch of salt

Instructions:
In a mixing bowl, combine the mashed bananas, oats, eggs, cinnamon, vanilla extract, baking powder, and a pinch of salt. Mix until well combined.
Heat a non-stick skillet or griddle over medium heat and lightly grease it with cooking spray or a small amount of oil.
Pour a ladleful of the pancake batter onto the skillet to form each pancake.
Cook until bubbles form on the surface, then flip

About the author

Charlotte
Charlotte

Charlotte is a health, beauty and wellness blogger and a mother of two, who lives between India and London

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Food & Recipes

Unveiling the Power: 17 Benefits of Ashwagandha for Female

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ashwagandha for female

Ashwagandha, a popular herb in Ayurvedic medicine, has been celebrated for centuries for its numerous health benefits. While both men and women can enjoy the advantages of this adaptogenic herb, in this article, we will specifically explore the remarkable benefits of ashwagandha for women’s health.

From balancing hormones to reducing stress and enhancing overall well-being, ashwagandha offers a range of advantages that can positively impact women’s lives.

Ashwagandha benefits for female

Ashwagandha, an ancient medicinal herb, offers numerous benefits for women’s health. Here are 17 key advantages of ashwagandha for females:

1. Hormonal Balance:

Several studies have investigated the effects of ashwagandha on hormonal balance in women.

A study published in the journal BioMed Research International found that ashwagandha supplementation helped regulate hormone levels, including cortisol, estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone, leading to improved menstrual regularity and reduced symptoms of hormonal imbalances.

Another study in the Journal of Ayurveda and Integrative Medicine reported that ashwagandha had a positive impact on hormone profiles in women with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), a condition characterized by hormonal imbalances.

2. Stress Reduction:

Stress reduction AshwagandhaNumerous studies have highlighted ashwagandha’s stress-reducing properties. A randomized controlled trial published in the Journal of Clinical Psychopharmacology demonstrated that ashwagandha supplementation led to a significant reduction in stress and anxiety levels in individuals with chronic stress.

Another study published in the Indian Journal of Psychological Medicine showed that ashwagandha extract improved stress resilience and reduced cortisol levels in chronically stressed adults.

3. Enhanced Fertility:

Enhanced FertilityResearch on ashwagandha’s impact on fertility in women is limited but promising.

A study published in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine reported that ashwagandha supplementation improved various parameters of female fertility, including follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) levels, egg quality, and menstrual regularity.

However, more research is needed to fully understand ashwagandha’s effects on fertility in women.

4. Increased Libido:

Ashwagandha’s potential as a libido enhancer has been investigated in a few studies. A study published in the journal Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine showed that ashwagandha extract significantly improved sexual function and satisfaction in women with sexual dysfunction.

Another study in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology demonstrated that ashwagandha extract enhanced sexual behavior in female rats. However, further research is required to establish the effects of ashwagandha on female libido through rigorous clinical trials.

infographic on ashwagandha benefits for females5. Immune System Support:

Ashwagandha’s immunomodulatory properties have been studied extensively. Research published in the journal Phytomedicine demonstrated that ashwagandha extract increased the activity of immune cells and enhanced immune response.

Another study in the journal Immunopharmacology and Immunotoxicology reported that ashwagandha extract improved immune function by stimulating various components of the immune system. These findings suggest that ashwagandha can support the immune system in women and contribute to overall immune health.

6. Skin Health:

Limited research has explored the effects of ashwagandha on skin health in women.

However, a study published in the Journal of Photochemistry and Photobiology demonstrated that ashwagandha extract exhibited potent antioxidant activity, protecting skin cells against oxidative damage caused by free radicals. Additionally, ashwagandha’s anti-inflammatory properties may help alleviate skin irritations and promote a healthier complexion.

7. Energy and vitality:

Multiple studies have investigated the impact of ashwagandha on energy levels and vitality in both men and women. A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study published in the Journal of Ayurveda and Integrative Medicine found that participants who took ashwagandha extract experienced significant improvements in energy, vitality, and overall well-being compared to the placebo group.

Another study published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology demonstrated that ashwagandha supplementation led to increased endurance and improved physical performance in healthy individuals.

8. Mood improvement:

Mood ImprovementResearch suggests that ashwagandha may have mood-enhancing effects, particularly in reducing symptoms of anxiety and depression.

A study published in the Journal of Clinical Psychopharmacology examined the effects of ashwagandha extract on individuals with anxiety disorders. The results showed a significant reduction in anxiety levels and improved mood compared to the placebo group.

Additionally, a review article published in the Cureus Journal of Medical Science highlighted the potential of ashwagandha as a natural alternative for managing symptoms of depression.

9. Cognitive function:

Several studies have explored the effects of ashwagandha on cognitive function, memory, and focus. A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial published in the Journal of Dietary Supplements found that participants who received ashwagandha supplementation demonstrated significant improvements in cognitive function and information processing speed compared to the placebo group.

Another study published in the Journal of Ayurveda and Integrative Medicine suggested that ashwagandha extract may enhance memory and attention in individuals with mild cognitive impairment.

10. Menopause symptom relief:

The adaptogenic properties of ashwagandha have been investigated for their potential benefits in managing menopause symptoms.

A study published in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine examined the effects of ashwagandha root extract on menopausal women.

The findings revealed a significant reduction in the frequency and severity of hot flashes, as well as improvements in sleep quality and overall well-being. However, more research is needed to establish the optimal dosage and long-term effects of ashwagandha for menopause symptom relief.

11. Bone health:

Limited studies specifically focus on ashwagandha’s effects on bone health, but some research indicates its potential benefits.

In a study published in the Journal of Pharmacy and Pharmacology, ashwagandha extract demonstrated the ability to improve bone mineral density and strength in rats. Although more human studies are necessary to confirm these effects, the preliminary findings suggest that ashwagandha may contribute to maintaining bone health and reducing the risk of age-related bone loss, such as osteoporosis.

12. Thyroid function:

Several studies have explored the impact of ashwagandha on thyroid function. Research published in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine (2018) found that ashwagandha supplementation helped improve thyroid hormone levels in subclinical hypothyroidism patients. Another study published in the Journal of Ayurveda and Integrative Medicine (2014) reported that ashwagandha extract exhibited thyroid hormone-balancing effects.

13. Anti-inflammatory properties:

Numerous studies have demonstrated the anti-inflammatory effects of ashwagandha. Research published in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine (2009) showed that ashwagandha root extract exhibited significant anti-inflammatory activity by inhibiting pro-inflammatory markers.

Another study published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology highlighted the ability of ashwagandha to reduce inflammation by modulating immune responses.

14. Blood sugar regulation:

Research suggests that ashwagandha may contribute to blood sugar regulation. A study published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology (2012) investigated the effects of ashwagandha on insulin sensitivity in individuals with type 2 diabetes.

The results indicated that ashwagandha supplementation improved insulin sensitivity and helped regulate blood sugar levels.

Furthermore, a study published in the Journal of Dietary Supplements (2017) found that ashwagandha extract reduced fasting blood glucose levels in individuals with impaired glucose tolerance.

15. Weight management:

Ashwagandha’s impact on weight management is linked to its stress-reducing properties. Chronic stress can contribute to overeating and weight gain. A study published in the Journal of Evidence-Based Complementary & Alternative Medicine (2016) investigated the effects of ashwagandha on stress and food cravings in adults under chronic stress.

The findings suggested that ashwagandha supplementation led to a reduction in stress and decreased food cravings, potentially aiding in weight management.

16. Cardiovascular health:

Research suggests that ashwagandha may have beneficial effects on cardiovascular health. A study published in the Journal of Ayurveda and Integrative Medicine (2012) explored the effects of ashwagandha root extract on cardiovascular parameters in patients with hypertension.

The results showed a significant reduction in blood pressure levels among the participants. Additionally, research published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology (2009) reported that ashwagandha exhibited lipid-lowering effects by reducing total cholesterol and triglyceride levels.

17. Anti-cancer properties:

While more research is needed, some studies suggest that ashwagandha possesses anti-cancer properties.

A study published in the journal BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine (2013) investigated the effects of ashwagandha extract on breast cancer cells. The findings indicated that ashwagandha extract inhibited the growth of breast cancer cells and induced apoptosis (programmed cell death).

Ashwagandha not only benefits women it has offered several benefits for men. While the previous discussion focused on the advantages of ashwagandha specifically for females, it’s important to note that many of these benefits apply to men as well. Ashwagandha’s impact on hormonal balance, stress reduction, immune system support, cognitive function, and overall well-being can be beneficial for both genders.

Additionally, ashwagandha has been studied for its potential effects on male fertility, testosterone levels, muscle strength, and endurance. It may also contribute to improved sexual function and libido in men.

How To Consume Ashwagandha?

ashwagandha

1. Powdered Ashwagandha:

  • Measure the desired amount of ashwagandha powder using a spoon or scale. A typical serving size is around 1-2 teaspoons (approximately 3-6 grams).
  • Mix the powder into a glass of warm water, milk, or your favorite beverage. You can also add it to smoothies, shakes, or yogurt for a convenient and flavorful option.
  • Stir the mixture thoroughly until the powder is well-dissolved.
  • Drink the ashwagandha-infused liquid immediately.

2. Ashwagandha Capsules or Tablets:

  • Follow the recommended dosage instructions provided on the product packaging. Generally, a common dosage ranges from 300-500 milligrams per day.
  • Take the capsules or tablets with a glass of water or as directed by your healthcare professional.
  • It’s advisable to consume ashwagandha supplements with meals to enhance absorption and minimize potential gastrointestinal discomfort.

3. Ashwagandha Tea or Decoction:

  • Boil water in a saucepan and add 1-2 teaspoons of ashwagandha powder or a few dried ashwagandha roots to it.
  • Allow the mixture to simmer for approximately 10-15 minutes, allowing the beneficial compounds to infuse into the water.
  • Strain the tea or decoction to remove any residue or plant material.
  • Add honey, lemon, or other natural sweeteners for taste, if desired.
  • Enjoy the ashwagandha tea while it’s still warm.

4. Ashwagandha Tincture:

  • Follow the instructions on the tincture bottle for the recommended dosage.
  • Typically, a few drops of the tincture (usually 20-30 drops) are taken orally.
  • Mix the drops with water or juice to dilute the tincture’s concentrated form before consumption.
  • Consume the diluted tincture as directed, preferably with meals.

It’s important to note that the optimal dosage of ashwagandha may vary depending on various factors, such as individual health conditions, age, and body weight. It is recommended to consult with a healthcare professional or an Ayurvedic practitioner to determine the appropriate dosage for your specific needs.

Additionally, it’s advisable to start with a lower dosage and gradually increase it over time, monitoring how your body responds to ashwagandha. As with any dietary supplement, it’s essential to follow the recommended guidelines and seek professional advice if you have any concerns or if you are taking other medications.

About the author

Charlotte
Charlotte

Charlotte is a health, beauty and wellness blogger and a mother of two, who lives between India and London

Continue Reading

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