How Long Does It Take for Ashwagandha to Work?

Updated on February 17, 2024
 by — reviewed by Jason Williams, PhD (Contributor: George Collins / Editor: Yoko Hill)
Article discussing the gradual impact of Ashwagandha on mental and physical health.

In today’s fast-paced world, stress and anxiety have become common issues that many people struggle with. As a result, natural remedies like Ashwagandha have gained popularity for their potential benefits in reducing stress, anxiety, and promoting overall well-being.

But, how long does it take for Ashwagandha to show results? In this article, we will explore the timeline for experiencing the benefits of Ashwagandha and provide insights into its effectiveness.

Understanding Ashwagandha and Its Benefits

Ashwagandha is an adaptogenic ancient herb (also known as Withania somnifera) that has been used in Ayurvedic medicine for centuries. It is considered an adaptogen, which means it helps the body adapt to stressors and promotes balance. 

The potential health benefits of natural Ashwagandha supplements include: 

  • Stress Reduction: Ashwagandha has been traditionally used to help alleviate stress and promote a sense of calmness and relaxation, and therefore better sleep onset and sleep quality.(1)
  • Anxiety Reduction: Many studies have shown that Ashwagandha may help reduce symptoms of anxiety and improve overall mood, including a study that studied the success of a 600mg dosage of Ashwaganda.(2)
  • Immune System Support: Ashwagandha has been found to have immune-boosting properties, helping the body fight against infections and diseases.(3)
  • Cognitive Function: Ashwagandha may have a positive impact on brain health, improving memory, focus, and cognitive performance.(4)
  • Increased Testosterone Levels: Ashwagandha is considered being a powerful natural testosterone booster, with qualities that promote an average 14.5% increase of this potent hormone in the body.(5) Ashwagandha extract thus can enhance sexual wellness, physical and mental vitality, as well as a range of other health benefits associated with healthy testosterone levels, including reduced fatigue.

It’s important to note that while Ashwagandha has shown promising results in various studies, it is not a cure-all solution and individual experiences typically vary.

How Long Does It Take for Ashwagandha to Work?

Studies have found Withania somnifera has the potential to be effective within 14 days when taking a daily dosage of 1000mg.(6) However, the timeline for when these effects become noticeable varies from person to person, so there is no set answer. The dosage and frequency of use play a crucial role in how fast Ashwagandha takes to work.

Here is a general guideline based on research and user experiences using this adaptogenic herb:

  1. Week 1: When it comes to the question; how quickly does Ashwagandha work for anxiety? The answer could be as little as 1 week. During the first week of taking Ashwagandha regularly, some users may start to feel a more balanced mood and a reduction in mild stress and anxiety levels. These initial effects are often subtle but can be the first signs that Ashwagandha is starting to work.
  2. Week 2: As you continue taking Ashwagandha daily, you may notice an increase in energy and vitality. Some users have reported feeling more alert and focused during this stage. Additionally, studies suggest that Ashwagandha may start to show its effectiveness in improving strength, muscle mass, and endurance.
  3. Month 1: After consistently taking Ashwagandha for about a month, you may experience more significant benefits. Many users have reported a reduction in fatigue, improved sleep quality, and reduced inflammation during this stage. Ashwagandha’s adaptogenic properties may help the body better manage stress responses and support overall well-being.
  4. Beyond Month 1: If you continue taking Ashwagandha for six months or longer, you may see improvements in cognitive function, such as enhanced memory, focus, and mental clarity. Studies have shown that Ashwagandha has potential cognitive-enhancing effects, making it beneficial for individuals seeking better mental performance.

It’s important to note that individual experiences of how long it takes for Ashwagandha to start working vary, and some users may notice the effects sooner or later than the general guideline. Additionally, it’s essential to consider factors such as dosage, overall health, and lifestyle choices, which can influence how quickly ashwagandha works.

Potential Side Effects of Taking Ashwagandha

While Ashwagandha is considered safe for most people, there are some potential side effects to be aware of:

  1. Digestive Issues: Some users may experience mild digestive issues such as upset stomach, gas, or bloating.
  2. Sedative Effects: Ashwagandha can have mild sedative properties, which may cause drowsiness or fatigue in some individuals. It’s important to be mindful of its effects when taking it during the day or if engaging in activities that require alertness.
  3. Interactions with Medications: Ashwagandha may interact with certain medications, such as blood pressure medications or medications that affect the central nervous system. It’s advisable to consult with a healthcare provider if you are taking any medications.

How Ashwagandha Works in the Body

Ashwagandha, also known as Withania somnifera, is an ancient medicinal herb that has been used for centuries in Ayurvedic medicine. When ingested, it interacts with various biological processes in the body, resulting in its therapeutic effects. 

Ashwagandha has been found to have neuroprotective properties, meaning it helps protect the brain and nervous system from damage. This is believed to be due to its ability to reduce inflammation and oxidative stress in the brain.

Ashwagandha has been shown to reduce cortisol levels in the body. Cortisol is a stress hormone that can have detrimental effects on the body when chronically elevated. By regulating cortisol levels, Ashwagandha may help reduce stress and improve overall well-being.

Additionally, Ashwagandha contains compounds called withanolides, which have been found to exhibit anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects. These properties help reduce inflammation in the body and protect cells from oxidative damage caused by free radicals.

Factors Influencing the Effectiveness of Ashwagandha

The effectiveness and time it takes for Ashwagandha to start working varies depending on several factors. Some important factors to consider include:

  • Dosage: The dosage of Ashwagandha can greatly influence its effectiveness. It is important to follow the recommended dosage guidelines provided by the manufacturer or healthcare professional when taking Ashwagandha supplements.
  • Bioavailability: Bioavailability refers to the extent to which a substance is absorbed and reaches its target in the body. The bioavailability of ashwagandha can vary depending on factors such as the form of the supplement (powder, capsule, extract), the method of administration (oral, topical), and the presence of other substances that may enhance or inhibit absorption.
  • Metabolism: Metabolism plays a role in how quickly Ashwagandha is broken down and eliminated from the body. Individual variations in metabolism can affect how long Ashwagandha stays in the system and its overall effectiveness.
  • Health Status: Individual health status can influence the effectiveness of Ashwagandha. People with certain health conditions or taking medications may experience different effects or require different Ashwagandha dosages.
  • Lifestyle Factors: Lifestyle factors such as diet and exercise also influence the effectiveness of Ashwagandha. A healthy lifestyle, including a balanced diet and regular physical activity, helps optimize the benefits of Ashwagandha.

Typical Timeline for Ashwagandha to Take Effect

The timeline for Ashwagandha to take effect can vary depending on the individual and the specific health concern being addressed. But, how fast does Ashwagandha root powder work?

While some effects may be felt immediately, others may take longer to manifest, meaning the time it takes to start working varies from person to person.

Here is a general timeline based on scientific studies and anecdotal evidence:

  • Immediate Effects: Some individuals may find that Ashwagandha will work immediately, providing an instant sense of calm or relaxation. These immediate effects are often attributed to Ashwagandha’s ability to modulate cortisol levels and reduce stress.
  • Short-term Effects: Some users see Ashwagandha start working within a few weeks of consistent use. Many individuals report improvements in energy levels, mood, and cognitive function. These short-term effects may be due to Ashwagandha’s adaptogen properties, which help the body adapt to stress and promote overall well-being.
  • Long-term Effects: Long-term use of Ashwagandha has been associated with a range of benefits, including improved sleep quality, reduced anxiety, enhanced immune function, and increased physical performance. These effects may become more pronounced with continued use of Ashwagandha over several months.

Overall, Ashwagandha can be an effective natural remedy for promoting overall well-being and reducing the negative effects of stress. However, it is important to consider the factors influencing its effectiveness and to use it responsibly under the guidance of a healthcare professional. This will allow you to get guidance on finding a personalized answer to the question of how long Ashwagandha takes to work for anxiety. 

Maximizing the Effects of Ashwagandha

Are you wondering how long does it takes for Ashwagandha to calm you down if you follow disciplined guidelines? Following guidelines on the best way to take Ashwagandha will provide ways to speed up the amount of time it takes for the wide range of health benefits to kick in. 

To maximize the effects of Ashwagandha, consider the following tips to influence how long it takes for your supplementation to start working:

  1. Recommended Dosage: The recommended dosage of ashwagandha for adults is about 500mg (3/4 teaspoon) of powdered root per day. However, it’s best to consult with a healthcare provider for personalized dosage recommendations based on your specific needs.
  2. Consistency: To experience the full benefits of ashwagandha, it’s important to take it regularly. Taking ashwagandha on alternate days can help create a steady and sustained effect over time.
  3. Pairing with Other Supplements or Medications: Before combining ashwagandha with other supplements or medications, it’s crucial to consult with a healthcare provider. Some combinations may enhance or interact negatively, affecting the potential impacts of ashwagandha.
  4. Start with Small Doses: As with any supplement, it’s recommended to start with small doses and gradually increase them as advised by a healthcare provider. This approach allows you to monitor your body’s response and minimize the risk of potential side effects.

Remember, achieving optimal results with ashwagandha is a gradual process. It’s essential to be patient and consistent with your ashwagandha regimen to experience its full potential.

When it comes to the question of how long does Ashwagandha take to work, the answer will potentially depend on the above factors. By combining Ashwagandha with a healthy lifestyle and self-care practices, you will maximize its potential benefits and improve your overall well-being.

Potential Side Effects and Precautions with Ashwagandha Use

While Ashwagandha is considered safe for most people, it is essential to be aware of potential side effects and take necessary precautions when starting any new supplement. 

Ashwagandha is a well-tolerated herbal supplement, but some individuals may experience mild side effects such as upset stomach, diarrhea, or nausea. Rarely, allergic reactions to Ashwagandha have been reported. If you experience any allergic symptoms such as rash, itching, or swelling, discontinue use and seek medical attention.

Ashwagandha may lower blood sugar levels, so if you have diabetes or are taking medication for diabetes, monitor your blood sugar levels closely and consult with your healthcare provider. It is advisable to avoid Ashwagandha if you have autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis or lupus, as it may stimulate the immune system. 

Ashwagandha has a sedative effect, so individuals taking sedative medications or experiencing drowsiness should use Ashwagandha with caution. Lastly, if you have a known allergy to plants in the nightshade family, including tomatoes, potatoes, or bell peppers, you may be more prone to an allergic reaction to Ashwagandha.

It is crucial to remember that Ashwagandha is a supplement and not intended to replace any prescribed medications or medical treatments. 

Conclusion: How Fast Will I See Results From Ashwagandha?

In conclusion, Ashwagandha is an ancient herbal remedy that has gained popularity for its potential benefits in reducing stress, anxiety, and promoting overall well-being. However, how long does it take to feel the effects of Ashwagandha? The timeline for experiencing the effects of Ashwagandha varies from person to person, but most users start noticing subtle changes within the first week of regular use. 

To maximize the effects of an Ashwagandha supplement, it’s essential to take it consistently, follow recommended dosage guidelines, and consult with a healthcare provider for personalized advice.

Remember, Ashwagandha is not a quick fix, and its effects are cumulative, gradually improving over time. With patience and a well-rounded approach to your overall health, ashwagandha may become a valuable addition to your wellness routine.

Sources, Studies, and Scientific Research
  1. Akhgarjand, Camellia et al. “Does Ashwagandha supplementation have a beneficial effect on the management of anxiety and stress? A systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials.” Phytotherapy research : PTR vol. 36,11 (2022): 4115-4124. doi:10.1002/ptr.7598 ↩
  2. Salve, Jaysing et al. “Adaptogenic and Anxiolytic Effects of Ashwagandha Root Extract in Healthy Adults: A Double-blind, Randomized, Placebo-controlled Clinical Study.” Cureus vol. 11,12 e6466. 25 Dec. 2019, doi:10.7759/cureus.6466 ↩
  3. Khanal, Pukar et al. “Withanolides from Withania somnifera as an immunity booster and their therapeutic options against COVID-19.” Journal of biomolecular structure & dynamics vol. 40,12 (2022): 5295-5308. doi:10.1080/07391102.2020.1869588 ↩
  4. Gopukumar, Kumarpillai et al. “Efficacy and Safety of Ashwagandha Root Extract on Cognitive Functions in Healthy, Stressed Adults: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Study.” Evidence-based complementary and alternative medicine : eCAM vol. 2021 8254344. 30 Nov. 2021, doi:10.1155/2021/8254344 ↩
  5. Lopresti, Adrian L et al. “A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled, Crossover Study Examining the Hormonal and Vitality Effects of Ashwagandha ( Withania somnifera) in Aging, Overweight Males.” American journal of men’s health vol. 13,2 (2019): 1557988319835985. doi:10.1177/1557988319835985 ↩
  6. Xing, Dante et al. “Effects of Acute Ashwagandha Ingestion on Cognitive Function.” International journal of environmental research and public health vol. 19,19 11852. 20 Sep. 2022, doi:10.3390/ijerph191911852 ↩