Ashwagandha is a moderately well-known herbal supplement made from a woody, shrub-like plant. It’s widely used in traditional Indian medicine, and most importantly, it’s among the best stress-lowering supplements known to mankind.
This herbal supplement is a member of the adaptogen class, including plants like ginseng which soothe and normalise the stress response in humans. If you’re too relaxed, ashwagandha will fire you up; if you’re chronically anxious, ashwangandha will calm you down. Ashwagandha is so effective at calming stress that cyclists, basketball players and old Soviet Union athletes have all used it to enhance their performance.
What’s more, ashwagandha is proven to reduce the symptoms of stress, suppressing the stress hormone cortisol by up to 32%. You’ll enjoy both a calmer mind and less side effects like acne. Ashwagandha’s other powers include increasing testosterone; 14% of interfile men went on to get their wives pregnant in one study.
It’s also an effective herb for comprehension, recollection, and memory, according to Indian Ayurvedic medicine. Finally, ashwagandha has a barely known bonus power for acne – reducing lipid peroxides, the deadliest form of free radicals for your skin.
The powers of this herb never seem to end, and that’s why if you keep reading, you’ll discover the ten greatest ashwagandha supplements available.
For a quick shortcut, the very best brand here is Be Herbal. Firstly, a warning: ashwagandha is not fully researched, and side effects are possible. In high doses, and in the sensitive, ashwagandha may cause stomach upset, drowsiness, vomiting, and itchy skin. Discontinue supplementation immediately if you experience such side effects.
Let’s get started:
One – 88Herbs
Firstly, 88Herbs is genuine ashwangandha, being sourced from the root of the original Asian plant. Secondly, 88Herbs is very pure, with its only additional ingredient being the hypromellose capsule. 88Herbs is free from magnesium stearate, corn or soy.
Most importantly, 88Herbs combines all that with an extremely powerful dosage. Each capsule contains 300mg of ashwagandha extract, with 60 capsules in the bottle for a mid-range price. However, that ashwagandha is standardised to consist of 5% withanolides.
These phytonutrients are the active compounds in ashwagandha root, responsible for calming stress, lowering free radicals, and improving athletic performance. Withanolides are the signature compound of ashwagandha, like the curcumin in turmeric. Other compounds in ashwagandha are involved, but withanolides are particularly vital. The standardised extract is in the patented and potent KSM-66 form.
Continuing this excellence, 88Herbs is also extracted using no chemical solvents at all. 88Herbs is even certified organic, and the ashwagandha is inspected thoroughly for heavy metals. The only slight downside is that KSM-66 contains a milk-sourced ingredient, but that’s no problem for most people since the amount is minuscule.
88Herbs is among the strongest fully standardised ashwagandhas, and among the best for sale anywhere.
Amazon link: Premium Grade KSM-66 Ashwagandha.
Two – Be Herbal
Be Herbal again contains KSM-66, the standardised form of ashwagandha extract consisting of 5% withanolides. Like 88Herbs, this makes up 300mg of each capsule, but in addition, there’s 200mg of raw whole ashwagandha powder. Not only does this increase the dosage, it also gives you the best of both worlds medicinally.
Withanolides are vital, and are the most important compounds, but it’s smart to eat the raw, whole ashwagandha powder as well, to guarantee that any less known compounds are present. It’s a similar scenario to turmeric supplements, with their high standardised levels of curcumin. Like turmeric, studies on stress and ashwagandha often tested the whole powder.
The overall ashwagandha dosage per capsule is 500mg. There’s 120 capsules per bottle, for a strong 4 month supply. There’s even 5mg of piperine per capsule, in the patented BioPerine form, to enhance the ashwagandha’s absorption. Note that the advertising reads 1000mg, because Be Herbal recommends taking 2 capsules daily.
Be Herbal is also very pure, with the only extra ingredients being rice flour and pullulan (the capsule). There’s also small amounts of milk from the KSM-66 again, so although the capsule is plant-derived rather than gelatin, Be Herbal isn’t a vegan product. However, Be Herbal is also organic, and thus free from the heavy metals of cheaper products.
Be Herbal is the best brand for sale today, the king of the ashwagandha market.
Amazon link: BE HERBAL Organic Ashwagandha Root Powder.
Three – Terrasoul Superfoods
Terrasoul Superfoods is our first packet of raw ashwagandha powder. If you’re committed to taking supplements in their food form, or simply obsessed with recipes, this is among the best ashwagandha powders out there.
Using ashwagandha powder guarantees that the correct compounds are in place in their all-natural ratios. It also guarantees a high concentration, since the powder is simply the root after being ground, evaporated and condensed.
A more mysterious advantage is that some of the foods and nutrients you combine the powder with could have unforeseen synergistic effects on the nutrients in ashwagandha. For example, perhaps the withanolides react with the quercetin in onions in an unforeseen way. This could be negative or positive; the powers could increase or decline
As for the powder itself, it comes in a 1 pound bulk bag, which will last for months. The ashwagandha itself is certified organic by the USDA. It’s even confirmed that TerraSoul Superfoods tests every single ashwagandha batch for heavy metals, at their special facility.
How do you take Terrasoul Superfoods? You could simply stir it into water and drink, but adding it to coffee or yogurt would be smarter, so that some fat is present to increase the absorption of the withanolides.
If you’re looking for a bulk bag of raw ashwagandha, you cannot go wrong with Terrasoul SuperFoods.
Amazon link: Terrasoul Superfoods Ashwagandha Root Powder.
Four – Organic India
Unlike Be Herbal, this ashwagandha contains no standardised section at all. It is simply 400mg of pure, raw, ground ashwagandha per capsule. There’s no set quantity of withanolides, but there will still be plenty, and there will be a strong supply of every other compound too. This is the perfect pill for taking pure ashwagandha without the hassle of dreaming up and adding it to recipes.
Quality-wise, Organic India also succeeds. The only other ingredient is the vegetable cellulose capsule. That also makes Organic India a vegan product, and it’s even organic, certified by the USDA, guaranteeing its freedom from toxic heavy metals like mercury.
Each bottle contains 180 capsules, giving you a 6 month supply. It’s sourced from India, where the ashwagandha plant species originally appeared, and the bottle is dark to prevent UV radiation from oxidising the pills.
Organic India is an elite supplement for pure ashwagandha.
Amazon link: Organic India Ashwagandha Capsules.
Five – NutriGold
Each capsule contains 300mg of KSM-66 ashwagandha extract standardised to contain 5% withanolides, and 200mg of raw ashwagandha powder. Once again, you benefit from the best of both worlds.
NutriGold is a lean and efficient supplement; the only additional ingredient is vegetable cellulose. Each bottle contains 90 capsules, giving you a lengthy supply. Each Nutrigold batch undergoes rigorous third party testing in a lab, guaranteeing that heavy metals are absent.
Interestingly, NutriGold also states that their ashwagandha consists of less than 0.1% withaferin A. This natural compound is a withanolide, but it’s the only one you need to avoid, since it has proven cytotoxic effects. In lower doses, withaferin A actually has anti-inflammatory properties, but at high doses, it becomes a menace. Luckily, ashwagandha root contains negligible levels of withaferin A anyway, so you’re also safe with a whole root powder.
Are there any downsides? If you’re allergic to dairy, there’s a milk derived ingredient in the form of lactic acid, found in the KSM-66 once again.
Overall though, NutriGold stands above the vast majority of ashwagandha supplements.
Amazon link: Nutrigold Organic Ashwagandha Gold.
Six – Divine Bounty
Divine Bounty has a particularly high dosage of 600mg of ashwagandha per capsule. There’s 90 capsules per bottle; Divine Bounty recommends taking two capsules daily, but it’s unnecessary to take 1200mg. One daily will suffice, giving you a 90 day supply.
Additionally, Divine Bounty contains 2.5mg of piperine, in the patented BioPerine form. Piperine is an alkaloid found in black pepper which enhances nutrient absorption massively in the human gut. It’s proven to work for several nutrients, enhancing curcumin’s bioavailability by 2000%.
At the moment, piperine isn’t confirmed to enhance ashwagandha or its withanolides, but it’s an excellent bonus to have. Divine Bounty is also pure, containing vegetable cellulose as its only other ingredient. There’s no magnesium stearate, soy or corn to be found.
Divine Bounty is the highest quality pure ashwagandha pill you could buy.
Amazon link: Divine Bounty Organic Ashwagandha Capsules.
Seven – Pure Encapsulations
From one of the best natural supplement companies ever comes a fully standardised ashwagandha product. Pure Encapsulations is slightly weaker than 88Herbs, containing 500mg instead of 300mg but being standardised to only 2.5% withanolides. Effectively, the withanolide count is 12.5mg versus 15mg in 88Herbs.
However, it’s still easily enough to slash your stress, if ashwagandha is indeed the supplement you need. Plus, with the higher overall dosage, you’ll enjoy greater amounts of the less famous compounds. Pure Encapsulations also has a pure ingredients list, reading hypoallergenic plant fiber (cellulose), and vegetarian capsule (cellulose, water).
What are your directions with ashwagandha? Take it for two weeks before judging its effects, to allow the withanolides to control your brain and neurotransmitters. 2 weeks will also give you enough time to take day to day variations in your stress levels into account. Pure Encapsulations contains 60 capsules of 500mg, so you easily have a strong enough supply to test it.
Pure Encapsulations is yet another pure ashwagandha which could put an end to your stress.
Amazon link: Pure Encapsulations Ashwagandha.
Eight – Blue Lily Organics
Another top quality bulk ashwagandha, for adding to whatever recipe you can invent. Blue Lily Organics is close to Terrasoul Superfoods in terms of quality. The ashwagandha powder is certified organic, and comes in a 1 pound bag. Blue Lily Organics is indeed certified organic and the ashwagandha itself is sourced from India.
The taste and texture are both on point too, proving that it’s fully natural and undiluted. Real ashwagandha should be neither too pale nor too dark; the colour resembles a lighter version of oatmeal, much paler compared to say, ginger or turmeric. The taste, meanwhile, was described by one reviewer as resembling an incense stick, quite weird but very natural.
If Terrasoul Superfoods vanishes from the market, Blue Lily Organics is your glorious alternative.
Amazon link: Blue Lily Organics Ashwagandha Powder.
Nine – NutraHerbals
NutraHerbals is another top quality ashwagandha product with no standardisation. It contains an identical dosage to Divine Bounty, at 600mg of raw ashwagandha powder per capsule. Like Divine Bounty, there’s also 2.5mg of piperine to enhance the bioavailability. The bonus ingredients list is similarly pure: plant cellulose and rice concentrate, both of which are harmless.
Regarding your strategy, another important point is to cycle your ashwagandha. Adaptogens tend to give the user resistance after prolonged usage, making the anti-anxiety benefits weaker and weaker. What’s a smart strategy? Take ashwagandha for two weeks, followed by a two week break. You could also alternate your ashwagandha with another adaptogen like ginseng, on a day to day basis, to prevent resistance to either herb.
NutraHerbals is just as excellent as Divine Bounty, making it an alternative pure ashwagandha in case the latter disappears.
Amazon link: NutraHerbals Organic Ashwagandha Root Powder.
Ten – Supernova Naturals
The total dosage per capsule is therefore 500mg, an excellent amount, while there’s 60 capsules per bottle. Supernova Naturals meets every requirement for acne and stress: the only extra ingredients are hypromellose and organic rice syrup solids. Like other brands using KSM-66, there’s a small amount of milk-derived ingredients as well.
Supernova Naturals is organic, and also rigorously tested for toxic heavy metals like mercury. Heavy metals are a big problem with ashwagandha – like with turmeric, the fields where the roots are grown are riddled with metals, being pumped out from industrial factories. Worse, traditional Indian medicine actually believes heavy metals to be healthy (one of their dodgiest beliefs), so ashwagandha products imported from India may contain mercury deliberately.
Luckily, all ten products listed here are clean and pure, and Supernova Naturals is no exception.
Amazon link: Supernova Naturals Organic Ashwagandha.
If you’re suffering from stress and anxiety, then nutritionally, your first task is to correct your magnesium levels. Deficiency is an epidemic, and magnesium is the most important mineral for suppressing blood levels of the stress hormone cortisol. It also regulates the neurotransmitters responsible for stress in the first place.
Vitamin C is also important, as is the amino acid glycine. Subsequently, you can experiment with adaptogens like ashwagandha, and if you do, you now have all the tools to succeed. The ultimate ashwagandha brand is Be Herbal, for its high dosage and combination of pure and standardised, but every brand here is above average and free from additives like magnesium stearate.
If ashwagandha is secretly the remedy you need, you are one step closer to the day you succeed.
Thanks for reading!