The purpose of this site is to collect lab research by medical doctors about herbs that are proven to treat illnesses and counter the false attacks on herbs by the medical industry and false claims by alternative medicine. I let the science tell the facts.
 
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Ashwagonda (Withania Somnifera)

Ashwagonda is a miracle cure according to the scientific reports below. If a pharmaceutical drug did half what ashwagonda does it would have international attention.

Ashwagonda is one of the most powerful herbs and when combined with other herbs or drugs it multiplies the strength of them. This means any dosage recommendations must be lowered when Ashwagonda is combined with other herbs and drugs. For example be careful if taking ashwagonda with insulin because it can result in dangerous low glucose levels or diabetic shock. In other words it is wonderful for diabetics because it causes insulin to work better thus lowering glucose levels. Why isn't ashwagonda being promoted by the diabetes foundation instead of asking for donations to create more harmful pharmaceutical drugs.

Some claimed benefits of Ashwagonda. source http://ashwagandhabenefits.com/

  • Ashwagandha is a powerful antioxidant
  • Boosts the immune system
  • Improves memory and concentration
  • May help reduce unhealthy blood pressure (hypertension)
  • May reduce anxiety, irritability and edginess
  • Ashwagandha improves libido in both men and women
  • Anti-Inflammatory properties
  • Dampens arthritis pain and joint inflammation with natural steroids called lactones
  • Modulates cholesterol levels (helps to lower bad LDL cholesterol levels)
  • Nourishes and protects the liver
  • May reduce the physical effects of stress, such as too much cortisol (which leads to more belly fat
  • Tames tension headaches
  • Increases the production of oxygen-carrying red blood cells
  • Increases energy and endurance
  • Boosts the brain’s production of important neurotransmitters, promoting a feeling of well being
  • Promotes relaxation and more restful sleep
  • Promotes healthy thyroid function

1. Wickipedia "Seven American and four Japanese firms have filed for grant of patents on formulations containing extracts of the herb Ashwagandha. Fruits, leaves and seeds of the Indian medicinal plant withania somnifera have been traditionally used for the Ayurvedic system as aphrodisiacs, diuretics and for treating memory loss. The Japanese patent applications are related to the use of the herb as a skin ointment and for promoting reproductive fertility. The U.S based company Natreon has also obtained a patent for an Ashwagandha extract. Another US establishment, the New England Deaconess Hospital, has taken a patent on an Ashwagandha formulation claimed to alleviate symptoms associated with arthritis.[2]...The main constituents of ashwagandha are alkaloids and steroidal lactones. Among the various alkaloids, withanine is the main constituent. The other alkaloids are somniferine, somnine, somniferinine, withananine, pseudo-withanine, tropine, pseudo-tropine, 3-a-gloyloxytropane, choline, cuscohygrine, isopelletierine, anaferine and anahydrine. Two acyl steryl glucoside viz. sitoindoside VII and sitoindoside VIII have been isolated from root. The leaves contain steroidal lactones, which are commonly called withanolides. The withanolides have C28 steroidal nucleus with C9 side chain, having six membered lactone ring...Ashwagandha is reported to have anti-carcinogenic effects in animal and cell cultures by decreasing the expression of nuclear factor-kappaB, suppressing intercellular tumor necrosis factor, and potentiating apoptotic signalling in cancerous cell lines.[3]...Side effects * Slight nausea effect * impaired sight"   http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ashwagandha
to conventional anti-cancer chemotherapies characterize malignant cutaneous melanoma, the most aggressive and deadly form of skin cancer. Withaferin A (WFA), a withanolide derived from the medicinal plant Withania somnifera, has been reported for its anti-tumorigenic activity against various cancer cells. For the first time, we examined the death-inducing potential of WFA against a panel of four different human melanoma cells and investigated the cellular mechanisms involved. WFA induces apoptotic cell death with various IC(50) ranging from 1.8 to 6.1 µM. The susceptibility of cells toward WFA-induced apoptosis correlated with low Bcl-2/Bax and Bcl-2/Bim ratios. In all cell lines, the apoptotic process triggered by WFA involves the mitochondrial pathway and was associated with Bcl-2 down regulation, Bax mitochondrial translocation, cytochrome c release into the cytosol, transmembrane potential (??m) dissipation, caspase 9 and caspase 3 activation and DNA fragmentation. WFA cytotoxicity requires early reactive oxygen species (ROS) production and glutathione depletion, the inhibition of ROS increase by the antioxidant N-acetylcysteine resulting in complete suppression of mitochondrial and nuclear events. Altogether, these results support the therapeutic potential of WFA against human melanoma.


2. "...we examined the death-inducing potential of WFA (Ashwaganda) against a panel of four different human melanoma cells and investigated the cellular mechanisms involved. WFA induces apoptotic cell death (kills the cancer) ... by the antioxidant N-acetylcysteine resulting in complete suppression of mitochondrial and nuclear events. Altogether, these results support the therapeutic potential of WFA against human melanoma." http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21710254

3. "Withania Somnifera Dunal know as Ashwagandha belong Solanaceae family...Root, stem and leaves extracts showed cytotoxicity activity ranging 0-98% depending on the cell lines but maximum activity was found in 50% ethanol extract of leaves of Withania Somnifera...T1 treatment showed a minimum of 39% and T3 treatment showed a maximum of 98% growth inhibition against HCT-15. This investigation is the first report of the anticancer activity in various parts of Withania Somnifera cultivated in fly ash amended soil." http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21695006

4. "Ashwagandha leaf derived withanone protects normal human cells against the toxicity of methoxyacetic acid, a major industrial metabolite...The present day lifestyle heavily depends on industrial chemicals in the form of agriculture, cosmetics, textiles and medical products...These findings warrant further basic and clinical studies that may promote the use of withanone as a health adjuvant in a variety of consumer products where the toxicity has been a concern because of the use of ester phthalates." http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21573189

5. "...These results suggest that the aqueous extract of W. somnifera root has an ability to inhibit the formation of mature amyloid-ß fibrils in vitro, which are known to lead to amyloid plaque formation in vivo." (In vivo means in a test tube using living tisser) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21567509

"Amyloids are insoluble fibrous protein aggregates sharing specific structural traits. Abnormal accumulation of amyloid in organs may lead to amyloidosis, and may play a role in various neurodegenerative diseases." http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amyloid

"Alzheimer's disease is the most fatal neurodegenerative disorder wherein the process of amyloid-ß (Aß) amyloidogenesis appears causative." http://www.pnas.org/content/102/48/17342.short


6. "...Based upon these studies, we conclude that WFA is a potent breast cancer anti-metastatic agent and the anti-metastatic activity of WFA is, at least in part, mediated through its effects on vimentin and vimentin ser56 phosphorylation." http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21538350

7. "Withaferin a suppresses estrogen receptor-a expression in human breast cancer cells.... http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21432907

8. "it is suggested that the presence of phenolic compounds including flavonoids in W. somnifera root and leaf extracts and their antioxidant activity may play a vital role in reduction of blood glucose level in alloxan-induced diabetic rats." http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20186490

 

 

 
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