Ashwagandha has been used in Ayurvedic medicine for thousands of years. Traditionally it has been used for its restorative and rejuvenating properties. It’s considered one of the strongest ‘adaptogens.’
What is an adaptogen?
Generally speaking, in Ayurvedic medicine, an adaptogen is an herb that helps your body handle stress. Another way of saying it is it boosts your body’s resilience to physical, chemical and emotional stressors. Each different adaptogenic herb is meant to do something slightly different. Ashwagandha is considered to be particularly good at helping to manage long term stress.
Where is Ashwagandha grown?
Ashwagandha is generally grown in India, China, Nepal and Yemen. Excitingly, there’s a great new trend of growing amazing ashwagandha right here in the Pacific NW! Including in the Gorge! The photos of the Ashwagandha plant in this post were all taken by Brittany Anna Mariposa (who you can find here) who grew a few plants in her local garden last summer. While we aren’t able to source our Ashwagandha that locally, we are grateful that we can now source most of our Ashwagandha from within Oregon.
What part of the plant is used?
Every part of the Ashwagandha plant is used in Ayurvedic medicine, the leaves, flowers, seeds and roots. The roots are considered particularly effective for their adaptogenic properties. The roots are often ground up into a dust and added to water or ghee (clarified butter). We don’t use powdered Ashwagandha in our tisanes as the volatile compounds in the roots quickly disappear in that form. Our aim for size is to have pieces large enough to hold onto their potency, but small enough to release their properties when you soak them in hot water.