Botanical Briefer: Ashwagandha

Withania somnifera is one of the most economically and medicinally significant plants to contain the withanolide constituent. Withanolides are the scientific name of a compound found in certain plants of the Solanceae family (commonly known as the nightshade family). W. somnifera, commonly known as Ashwagandha, Winter Cherry or Indian Ginseng, is widely cultivated in India and throughout the Middle East and grows in dry areas of sub-tropical regions. Somnifera is Latin for “sleep-bearing.” Ashwagandha is a grayish, slightly hairy evergreen shrub that grows to about 1.5 meters in height and has fairly long tuberous roots. It has small and greenish-yellow flowers and bares fruit that is sm

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