Last updated on June 30th, 2023
The world of Ayurveda, which consists of traditional plant-based Indian medicines, has been providing natural remedies for centuries. One such herb that has earned massive popularity in current times is Ashwagandha. Ashwagandha, or amukkuram, is said to be a miracle herb known for its numerous health benefits. It can help manage various ailments, including diabetes and even Covid 19.
Diabetes is a continual disorder that impacts millions worldwide. With its rising prevalence, people are increasingly turning to natural remedies to manage the condition. Ashwagandha, or Withania somnifera, or amukkuram, is a type of adaptogenic herb. Studies suggest that the herb has a beneficial impact on sugar levels.
But is Ashwagandha good for diabetes? Can it really help manage the condition?
Who should not take Ashwagandha? In this article, we will dive deeper into the benefits of Ashwagandha for diabetes patients and explore its effectiveness in managing the symptoms of the condition. Are you someone who has diabetes? Or are you someone looking for natural remedies to develop your health? This article might be just for you. Let’s explore the world of Ashwagandha and its potential benefits for diabetes.
What is Ashwagandha?
Ashwagandha is a therapeutic herb that has been in use since age-old times in Ayurvedic medicine. Ayurveda is an old therapy of cure that follows its origins in India. Also known as Withania somnifera and amukkuram, it is a small shrub with yellow flowers that is native to the dry regions of India, the Middle East, and North Africa.
The name ‘Ashwagandha’ originated from Sanskrit, and in the language, it translates to “the smell of a horse,”. This refers to the herb’s unique odour and the belief that consuming it can give you the strength and stamina of a horse. In contrast, we can’t guarantee that you’ll turn into a stallion. Ashwagandha for a diabetes patient generally has some impressive health benefits.
For instance, it is considered an adaptogen. Adaptogens help your body adapt to anxiety or stress and stabilise your hormones. It has been demonstrated to lessen cortisol (stress hormone). Moreover, ashwagandha for diabetes patients also promotes overall health and feelings of well-being.
Additionally, amukkuram consists of anti-inflammatory properties. Ashwagandha for diabetes patients, helps lower inflammation in the body. Inflammation is an essential element in several chronic ailments. But that’s not all! Ashwagandha may also improve brain function, enhance physical performance, and even boost fertility in men. It has been used to cure specific disorders, like depression, asthma, arthritis, etc.
Overall, Ashwagandha or amukkuram is a powerful and beneficial herb that is used for centuries. Taking ashwagandha improves your health and vitality. Plus, whether you’re looking to reduce stress or improve your mood, or promote your overall health, Ashwagandha may be the remedy you need.
Read More: Can Diabetes Patients Eat Oranges ?
Nutritional Value of Ashwagandha
The medicinal herb also called the winter cherry and amukkuram, carries many nutrients which are highly beneficial for the human body. From medicines to cosmetics to the food industry Ashwagandha has a wide-scale application, and consuming ashwagandha with milk is a popular practice here in India. So let’s know the nutritional content of the Ashwagandha through the table below:
|Nutritional Value of Ashwagandha|
|Nutrients (in 100 grams of Ashwagandha)||Its amount|
|Dietary Fibre||32.3 g|
|Vitamin C||3.7 mg|
Read More: Indian Diet for Diabetes Reversal.
Glycemic Index of Ashwagandha
Ashwagandha is consumed in the form of ashwagandha powder. The powder is extracted from the root of the plant and included in various food items like roti, paranthas, milk, etc. Amukkuram powder is used to manage diabetes as it has a low-level glycemic index and medium-range glycemic load.
Note – The glycemic index of food measures the quality of carbohydrate content in them. At the same time, the glycemic load of food measures the number of carbohydrates and insulin response post-consumption.
Is Ashwagandha Good for Diabetes?
Questions like Is ashwagandha good for diabetes have mixed answers. Taking Ashwagandha for diabetes patients has shown promise in regulating glucose levels in the blood. Ashwagandha or amukkuram contains bioactive compounds like withanolides, alkaloids, and flavonoids that are believed to have anti-diabetic properties.
Some studies conducted on animals have suggested that ashwagandha may help improve insulin sensitivity. Taking Ashwagandha for diabetes patients reduces blood sugar levels and enhances pancreatic beta-cell function, which is all crucial factors in diabetes management.
One study published in the journal Phytomedicine in 2000 investigated the effects of ashwagandha on rats with chemically-induced diabetes. The results showed that ashwagandha root extract not only decreases blood glucose but also boosts insulin sensitivity and insulin secretion.
While these animal studies are promising, it’s important to remember that human bodies may respond differently. Therefore, more extensive research is needed to prove the effects of ashwagandha on diabetes in humans. Only a finite amount of clinical trials have been performed, and the sample sizes have been moderate.
Read More: Indian Diet for Diabetes Reversal .
Human Trials & Tests
A clinical trial published in a medical journal in 2014 examined the effects of ashwagandha root extract on human subjects with type 2 diabetes. The study found that supplementation of ashwagandha for diabetes patients led to progress in blood sugar control. Along with this, amukkuram also helps to enhance insulin sensitivity in our bodies.
However, the study had a compact sample size, and additional trials are needed to verify these verdicts. It’s worth noting that amukkuram should not replace standard diabetes medications or medical advice. If you have diabetes, it is crucial to consult with your healthcare specialist before taking ashwagandha or amukkuram.
In conclusion, while there is some preliminary evidence suggesting that amukkuram may have potential benefits for diabetes management, more robust research is needed to establish its effectiveness and safety. But remember, it’s essential to discuss it with your doctor. A doctor will deduce a proper dietary plan to align with your overall diabetes treatment plan.
Benefits of Ashwagandha
Indians have used ashwagandha’s medicinal properties for ages. This potent adaptogen is known for its numerous health benefits. So here are some benefits of ashwagandha for diabetes patients and non-diabetics.
1. Reduces Tension and Anxiety
Many studies have shown taking ashwagandha, or amukkuram, reduces cortisol levels in the body. Cortisol hormone is associated with stress. It also contains compounds that promote relaxation and improve mood, making it an excellent natural remedy for anxiety.
2. Boosts Brain Function
Taking ashwagandha with milk improves cognitive function and memory. This makes amukkuram a perfect supplement for boosting brain power.
Read More: Is Coconut Milk Good for Diabetics?
3. Aids the Immune System
Ashwagandha contains powerful antioxidants that help to safeguard your body from moving free radicals. The radicals can damage cells and contribute to illness. It also promotes the generation of white blood cells(WBC). WBCs help to fight off infections and increase immunity.
4. Assists with Sleep
Taking ashwagandha or amukkuram helps improve sleep quality and curtail the time taken to fall asleep. This is due to the property of sleep stimulation & lessening of anxiety.
Read More: Is Apricot Good for Diabetics?
5. Improves Physical Performance
Taking ashwagandha helps in increasing strength, endurance, and stamina. This makes amukkuram an excellent supplement option for athletes and the health-conscious.
6. Reduces Inflammation
Ashwagandha includes compounds that are anti-inflammatory. So amukkuram becomes an effective natural remedy for conditions like arthritis and all other inflammatory disorders.
7. Assists thyroid function
Ashwagandha or amukkuram benefits include healthy thyroid function, which is fundamental for a healthy metabolism.
8. Improves reproductive health
For a long time, taking ashwagandha has been considered a natural remedy for infertility. It helps improve sperm count and enhance fertility in men. In women, amukkuram helps to supervise menstrual cycles and improve fertility.
As you can see, ashwagandha or amukkuram is a highly versatile herb with numerous health benefits. Whether you’re looking to reduce stress and anxiety, improve cognitive function, or support overall health and well-being, ashwagandha is definitely worth considering.
Side effects of Ashwagandha
While there is some evidence to suggest that ashwagandha or amukkuram may help reduce stress, anxiety, etc., it’s important to be aware of its potential side effects. So here are some probable side effects of the herb.
1. Upsets digestion
One of the most common side effects of amukkuram is digestive upset. Some people may experience nausea, diarrhea, or abdominal discomfort after taking the herb. This is usually mild and goes away on its own, but in rare cases, it can be more severe. So here it’s also clear as to who should not take ashwagandha.
Another potential side effect of ashwagandha is drowsiness. This can be a desirable effect if you’re taking ashwagandha or amukkuram to help you sleep or reduce anxiety, but it can also be a problem if you need to be alert and focused. If you experience drowsiness, it’s best to avoid the herb as it may negatively affect you. So people who intend to work late at night or drive are the ones who should not take ashwagandha.
Read More: Is Cranberry Juice Good for Diabetics ?
3. Reaction to certain medicines
Ashwagandha or amukkuram may also interact or react with certain drugs, such as sedatives, etc. If you’re the one on any prescribed medications, we advise you to speak to the doctor before taking ashwagandha into your regimen.
4. Abnormally lowers sugar levels
There is some concern that taking ashwagandha may lower blood sugar levels. While this could be beneficial for people with diabetes, it could also be dangerous for non-diabetics. If you’re taking ashwagandha with milk or any other form and notice symptoms such as lightheadedness, dizziness, or confusion, it’s essential to check your blood sugar levels. And also, speak with your healthcare provider.
Read More : Are Sugar Free Biscuits Safe for Diabetics ?
Ways to Use Ashwagandha
Taking ashwagandha or amukkuram can be a great addition to your diet through various recipes. The recipes will enable you to intake amukkuram without compromising on the taste. Here are a few popular dishes where you can incorporate ashwagandha for diabetes patients:
1. Ashwagandha Masala Chai
Elevate your traditional masala chai by infusing it with the goodness of amukkuram. Prepare your regular masala chai with tea leaves, milk, spices like ginger, cardamom, cinnamon, cloves, and a pinch of black pepper.
Towards the end, add a teaspoon serving of amukkuram powder. And leave it for a few minutes. Strain and savor the delightful blend of flavours and health benefits.
2. Ashwagandha with Milk
Another common way is taking ashwagandha with milk. Take a pan and heat it with milk and water in portions 2:1, respectively. Add ashwagandha powder in it with some dry fruits and a pinch of sweetener. Consuming ashwagandha with milk at night will promote its benefits.
Read More: Top 6 Dry Fruits For Diabetics.
3. Ashwagandha Biryani
Prepare a fragrant and flavourful biryani with a healthful twist. Sauté some basmati rice, mixed vegetables, and aromatic spices in ghee or oil. Add a teaspoon of ashwagandha powder while cooking the rice.
The amukkuram will infuse the dish with its unique essence, contributing to both taste and well-being. Serve this wholesome biryani with raita for a complete and satisfying meal.
4. Ashwagandha Turmeric Dal
Enhance the nutritional profile of your dal by taking ashwagandha and turmeric. Cook your preferred lentils (such as red lentils or yellow split peas) with spices, onions, and tomatoes.
Towards the end, stir in a teaspoon of ashwagandha powder and a teaspoon of turmeric powder. The mix of these two strong elements will not only boost the flavor but also offer numerous health benefits.
Read More: Are Peanuts Good for Diabetics?
5. Ashwagandha Lassi
Quench your thirst with a revitalizing ashwagandha lassi. In a blender, combine yogurt, chilled water, stevia or honey, and a teaspoon of amukkuram powder. Blend until smooth and creamy.
Pour into glasses, and for an extra touch of indulgence, sprinkle a pinch of ground cardamom on top. Sip and enjoy the creamy goodness with the added benefits of ashwagandha.
6. Ashwagandha Laddus
Create delectable energy balls or laddus using traditional Indian ingredients along with ashwagandha. In a pan, roast nuts like almonds, pista, cashews, etc. Grind them coarsely, and in a separate pan, melt ghee.
Add jaggery or stevia and mix nicely. Then, combine the nut mixture, amukkuram powder, cardamom powder, and shredded coconut. Shape the recipe into little balls and let them cool.
Enjoy these nutritious and delightful treats as a quick snack. Remember to adjust the amount of ashwagandha powder to your preference and ask your doctor or herbalist. In Indian cuisine, you find wide dishes that you can explore. So incorporating amukkuram can bring an exciting and healthful twist to your favorite recipes.
Read More: Is Dragon Fruit Good For Diabetics?
In conclusion, it seems that taking ashwagandha or amukkuram holds promising potential in managing diabetes. But more research is required to realize its effectiveness and safety fully. Numerous studies have highlighted ashwagandha’s potential to promote insulin sensitivity, curtail sugar levels, and enhance overall metabolic function. Amukkuram’s active compounds, such as withanolides, appear to play a crucial role in these therapeutic effects.
However, it’s important to note that most of the existing research has been conducted on animals or small human trials. Therefore, larger and more rigorous studies are necessary to validate these findings. Additionally, regular exercise, a balanced diet, medication adherence, and consistent blood sugar monitoring remain the cornerstones of diabetes care.
Read More: Are Grapefruits Safe for Diabetics?
What are the 12 Benefits of Ashwagandha?
There are many health benefits linked to taking ashwagandha. Amukkuram
- Reduces blood pressure
- Relieves tension & stress\
- Helps manage inflammation
- Minimises pain
- Improves energy levels
- Enhances cognitive functions
- Enriches immunity
- Boosts metabolism
- Improves heart functioning
- Helps in weight reduction
- Regulates women’s menstrual cycle
How to Consume Ashwagandha for Diabetes?
There are several ways of taking ashwagandha in your diet. You can consume ashwagandha with milk and mix amukkuram powder in rotis and chapatis. You can include it in your tea or make sugar-free desserts etc.
Which Ayurvedic Herb is Best for Diabetes?
Ayurveda is a separate branch of medicine concentrating on cures through natural plants and herbs. So there is no single herb to cure diabetes through Ayurveda. However, herbs like amla, neem, Triphala, etc., have been shown to reduce sugar levels.
Who should Avoid Ashwagandha?
To answer the question of who should not take ashwagandha, we will tell you that persons suffering from immunity dysfunctions should avoid it. Patients with type 1 diabetes, lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, etc., should totally avoid ashwagandha.
Does Ashwagandha Reduce Blood Sugar?
With many clinical tests and trials, researchers have found taking ashwagandha or amukkuram reduces sugar levels. In diabetes, ashwagandha’s effect is seen in fasting, HbA1C and non-fasting sugar levels. Along with this, amukkuram also enhances insulin secretion and absorption in our body.
The information included at this site is for educational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for medical treatment by a healthcare professional. Because of unique individual needs, the reader should consult their physician to determine the appropriateness of the information for the reader’s situation.