Anbody using Ashwagandha?

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by spiritsky, Mar 23, 2006.

  1. spiritsky

    spiritsky Member

    Does anybody have an experiences to share with this Ayervedic herb. I have a friend who says it's helped him get off of Antidepressants and now he sleeps well without having to take anything. It apparently has many other benefits to health, such as, improved energy, regulating cortisol levels, enhancing immunity etc...

    My wife bought me a bottle of it yesterday and I'm going to try it out for a while.

    If anybody is using it can you let us know how much you take each day? I took 1000mg today but not sure more would be better.




    [This Message was Edited on 03/23/2006]
  2. Cromwell

    Cromwell New Member

    For comments.
  3. claudiaw

    claudiaw New Member

    It is commonly used in India for Chronic illness and fatigue.

    It is similar to ginseng in that it is an adaptogenic herb, helps your body adapt to stress.

    I used it yrs. ago and felt better, have not tried it since I have gotten worse with my FM.

    Right now I am trying several other supplements, but might try this one again .

    I hope it helps you.

    The dosage is usually 500mg once or twice a day.

    Take care, Claudia
  4. CAAnnieB

    CAAnnieB New Member

    I am a patient of Dr. Powell's in Sacramento. He treats FM primarily by treating the bacterial infection (chronic) Chlamydia Pneumoniae. Part of his protocol is using Ashwagandha. I take it once a day in the evening. Here's some info off one of my Dr's handouts:

    "Withania somnifera, also known as ashwagandha, Indian ginseng, or winter cherry, has been an important herb in the Ayurvedic and indigenous medical systems for over 3000 years. Historically, the plant has been used as an aphrodisiac, liver tonic, anti-inflammatory agent, and more recently to treat asthma, ulcers, insomnia, and senile dementia. Clinical trials and animal research support the use of ashwagandha for anxiety, cognitive and neurological disorders, inflammation, and Parkinson's disease. Ashwagandha is also used therapeutically as an adaptogen for patients with nervous exhaustion, and debility due to stress, and as an immune stimulant in patients with low white blood cell counts." Altern Med Rev. 2004 Jun; 9 (2): 211-214.

    "A study done in 1991 at the Department of Pharmacology, University of Texas Health Science Center indicated that extracts of ashwagandha had GABA-like activity. This may account for this herb's anti-anxiety effects. A 2002 laboratory study indicates ashwagandha stimulates the growth of axons and dendrites. A 2001 study of rodents showed ashwagandha had memory boosting ability. 2000 study with rodents showed ashwagandha to have anti-anxiety and anti-depression effects."

    Other studies have suggested that Ashwagandha increases Nitric Oxide production in the body, thus inhibiting the ability of Cpn to infect white blood cells and limiting multiplication of the Cpn bacteria. An increase in Nitric Oxide production is helpful in decreasing pain.

    I take one 400 mg. capsule each night. The bottle says to take one capsule 3 times daily, or as directed by your health care professional.

    Does it work? I'm not sure because my protocol involves so mant supplements that I couldn't say if the Ashwagandha is helping or not! But I'm trusting that it is an important part of my treatment protocol. (Which DOES seem to be giving me some pain relief!) I've only been doing this new protocol since January...

    P.S. Aren't you curious how they measured "memory boosting abilities" and depression in the rodent studies?!!!! Te-He! I'm sorry, but that struck me as SO funny as I was typing it!

    Hugs,
    Annie
  5. butterfly8

    butterfly8 New Member



    I have a friend with cfs who takes it as part of a herbal mix that he boils up each day and he says that it has helped him - but he does take other stuff.

    I get my herbal mix from a chinese herbalist and have to boil it up every couple of days and drink the water. She does not put A. in my mix because it says that it can be difficult to digest - in my case, because I do have problems with my digestion system.

    I do not know about bottles or tabs. because my only experience with it has been in the dried form.
  6. spiritsky

    spiritsky Member

    Yes, I'm still using it. I'm just taking 750mg a night along with 750mg tryptophan 2 hours before bed and then 500mg GABA and 1mg melatonin at bedtime. It's working very well. I seem to be getting to sleep faster and not waking up at 3am like I usually do. I'm also sleeping about 1 hour less each night, I only need 8 instead of 9 hours...
  7. spiritsky

    spiritsky Member

    Sorry to hear about your bad night sleep. I'm using "Ayurvedic Organics" brand. It seems to be very good and it's Organically grown, no side effects for me other than feeling sleepy.

    You might also be having a herx effect. Ashwagandha is apparently good for a lot of things, not just sleep, and maybe your body's reacting. You might want to start with just a small dose, 250mg or something like that.

    good luck.

    I'm going to go up to 1000mg tonight and drop my tryptophan a little to 500mg (too much tryp leaves me a little groggy in the morning).

  8. krishna3

    krishna3 New Member



    ive used ashwaganda in a formula for adrenal support for year and while it increases my energy , it had not helped with my sleep, i prefer to use an adrenal glandular, 2x day plus progesterone and dhea for my sleep!

    good luck it is an excellent adaptogenic herb, helps body deal with stress, there are many others, especially eleuthrococcus a gentle ginseng that one can talke in small doses over a long period of time

    glad to hear it is helping and it is so nice to hear the alternative views, theres always something new to try and it all seems to help, for how long is the ?

    m
  9. spiritsky

    spiritsky Member

    Regarding Tryptophan side effects. From what I understand, most people, 80% or so, don't have any groggy side effects from it. That's why it's so good, but unfortunately, I'm one of the 20% that does, so I have to watch my dose. If I do more than 1000mg, I get pretty zonked out the next day - I find 750mg the max dose I can tolerate but would like to drop it a bit further. As far as where I get it - online at Vitacost.

    On a different note, last night I tried 1000mg Ashwa and found it to be too high. It gave me a pain in the neck and a funny feeling in my throat (not for sure it was the ashwa but it seems to be it), but did I ever sleep....zzzzzzzzzzzzzz... A little too much. I'm going to go back to 750mg tonight, seems that's the best dose for me, and stay on that for a while.

    One interesting positive side effect was that about an hour after taking the ashwa last night my muscle twitching in both my legs had stopped. I am one of those who has this constant twitching going. This is something new that I'll keep an eye on.

    So, back on 750mg tryptophan, 750mg ashwa, 500mg GABA and 1mg melatonin, oh and almost forgot - 25mg dose of DHEA.


    I hope it works out for you. It's so great not to have to take Ambien anymore. Even though I still feel a bit groggy in the morning, it doesn't last too long, and it's sooo much better than the wierd, drugged feeling I get from Ambien or Benadryl, and the quality of sleep is also much better.


  10. spiritsky

    spiritsky Member

    Sounds like your sleep cycle is getting a bit out of whack. One more thing to try (I know, one more thing) if you havn't already is to take a 5mg dose of melatonin before bed. Melatonin at 5mg or more will reset your sleep cycle. Just do this for 1 or 2 nights and then back off to a lower dose or none at all.

    And, one other thing is make sure you go to bed at around the same time every night. For me it's 10pm, tired or not tired, that's when I go, and I have a piece of toast to snack on also. It's a regular rythm. You don't want to be going to bed one night at 10, then at 12, then at 9 etc...

    And, make sure you wake up around the same time every day. It might be hard at first but it's really not a good idea to sleep during the day otherwise you'll disturb your sleep pattern even more. But, we do the best we can...good luck...hope your feeling better.



  11. spiritsky

    spiritsky Member

    How did it go with the melatonin? Did it help to reset your sleep cycle?
    [This Message was Edited on 04/03/2006]
  12. spiritsky

    spiritsky Member

    So sorry for you. I hear you...it's agonizing. Yes, I would not take the melatonin at the higher doses for more than 1 or 2 nights. I've had my own struggles with getting the right doses for things and sometimes I've found it's best just to stop everything and start again, starting with a low dose first. Only start one new thing at a time every few days and find the right dose for that one thing before starting the next. That way you can know what the effect is for each new item you start taking and your sure you're not overdosing. But it does take time...