Ayurvedic medicine has used ashwagandha for years to help balance the body and protect it from stress. One way to take this supplement is in a herbal tea. We discuss how to make ashwagandha tea and all the benefits and side effects associated with it.
Ashwagandha is a herbal supplement that has many reported health benefits such as anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, anticancer, anti-stress, and anti-anxiety.
Dried roots from the ashwagandha plant can be used to make a standalone herbal tea or used in combination with other herbal plants.
Ashwagandha tea is caffeine free and has an earthy taste which can be improved with natural sweeteners such as honey.
The recommended dosage is to consume no more than one cup of ashwagandha tea per day for a maximum of 6 months.
Ashwagandha tea: what is it?
Ashwagandha is a that has been used for years in Ayurvedic medicine to treat a number of health conditions. It is commonly referred to as an adaptogen which is a group of herbs that help the body respond to stressors. Ashwagandha is typically obtained from the root of the plant, but some studies have included extracts from the plant's leaves and fruit.
Ashwagandha can be found as an oral supplement in pill form in many stores and online. It is also available as a tea where the root is supplied in tea bags. However, you can buy raw ashwagandha root to use in tea or combine it with other herbs to make a combination herbal tea.
The tea made from the ashwagandha root is naturally caffeine-free and has an earthy taste. Due to the taste, some recommend adding honey as a natural sweetener or using a combination of herbs to obtain a more palatable taste.
Ashwagandha tea benefits
One benefit of using ashwagandha tea is its calming effects. Research studies have shown ashwagandha to be effective in reducing anxiety levels in as little as 6 weeks. Although these studies used oral pills to supplement diets with ashwagandha, it can also be effective when used as tea.
Ashwagandha tea also promotes anti-inflammatory effects while stimulating the immune system to be more effective. By reducing levels of inflammatory molecules in the body and increasing antibody production, ashwagandha tea can give a weakened immune system a needed boost.
Supplementing your diet with ashwagandha tea can also reduce the level of stress experienced. In as little as four weeks of use, people have noted their subjective levels of stress have improved. In addition, the use of ashwagandha tea can counteract the negative effects of cortisol, which is a major hormone released in response to stressful situations.
Boosting testosterone levels is another benefit seen with the use of ashwagandha. Male fertility may also be improved through the benefits of an increased sperm count, sperm volume, and sperm motility.
Ashwagandha tea can also be used to help promote better sleep regardless of when it is drunk. However, it is naturally caffeine free, so it can be drank shortly before bed. When used as directed, ashwagandha may help people fall asleep faster, stay asleep longer, and promote more restful sleep.
How to make ashwagandha tea
To make ashwagandha tea, one must purchase raw dried ashwagandha root. Next, you will need to bring your water to a boil and place 1 teaspoonful of the dried root into the water. This can be done by directly pouring it into the water or placing it into an empty tea bag.
The water with the dried root should be allowed to simmer for ten minutes. Once complete, pour the mixture through a strainer to remove all the pieces of root or remove the tea bag. You may add honey to the mixture as needed for taste.
Additionally, one can simply buy ashwagandha powder and place this in a hot beverage to simulate tea. The advantage of adding the powder is that you know exactly what dose you are adding, whereas with dried roots the amount will depend on how long you steep the tea and how hot the water is that is used. However, the disadvantage, as with using dried roots, is that the reconstituted powder has a distinct taste that can be difficult for some to tolerate.
How much ashwagandha tea per day can you drink?
The maximum dosage of Ashwagandha is 1000 mg a day. This typically translates to 1 teaspoonful of the powder formulation. However, with teas, it is often difficult to determine the exact amount of Ashwagandha in the tea.
It is thus recommended that you consume one cup of tea a day. You can do this as part of a daily routine for up to 6 months, but then it is recommended that you take a 3-month vacation from using the tea. However, if you only take it occasionally, there is no need to pause usage.
Ashwagandha tea side effects
Ashwagandha has been shown to be safe when used as directed in the approved dosage amounts. However, with larger doses, vomiting, diarrhea, and upset stomach has been reported to occur. In rare cases, ashwagandha may increase the release of thyroid hormones into the blood and thus if you have a history of thyroid conditions it is best to avoid this supplement.
Additionally, if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, you should not take ashwagandha.
Due to its ability to stimulate the immune system, it is recommended that individuals with autoimmune diseases such as lupus and multiple sclerosis avoid taking ashwagandha. Because it can raise testosterone levels, males with a history of prostate cancer should also avoid this supplement.
Finally, ashwagandha should be used with caution when taking other drugs that produce a sedative effect. As it may enhance the sedative effects.
- Indian Journal of Psychological Medicine. A Prospective, Randomized Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Study of Safety and Efficacy of a High-Concentration Full-Spectrum Extract of Ashwagandha Root in Reducing Stress and Anxiety in Adults.
- The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine. An Alternative Treatment for Anxiety: A Systematic Review of Human Trial Results Reported for the Ayurvedic Herb Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera).
- Advances in Nutrition. Examining the Effects of Herbs on Testosterone Concentrations in Men: A Systematic Review.
- Sleep Medicine. A Randomized, Double Blind, Placebo Controlled Study to Evaluate the Effects of Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera) Extract on Sleep Quality in Healthy Adults.
- Phytopharmacy: An Evidence-Based Guide to Herbal Medicinal Products. Ashwagandha.