THE CONTEXT: The Ministry of Ayush has collaborated with the U.K.’s London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) to conduct a study on ‘Ashwagandha’ for promoting recovery from COVID-19.
- All India Institute of Ayurveda (AIIA), an autonomous body under the Ministry of Ayush, and the LSHTM signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU)
- They will conduct clinical trials of ‘Ashwagandha’ on 2,000 participants in three U.K. cities — Leicester, Birmingham and London (Southall and Wembley).
- It is an easily accessible, over-the-counter nutritional supplement in the U.K. and has a proven safety profile.
- The successful completion of the trial could be a major breakthrough and give scientific validity to India’s traditional medicinal system.
- Ashwagandha’ (Withania somnifera), commonly known as ‘Indian winter cherry’, is a traditional Indian herb that boosts energy, reduces stress and makes the immune system stronger.
- The positive effects of ‘Ashwagandha’ have been observed in Long COVID, which is a multi-system disease with no evidence of its effective treatment or management.
- Recently, a number of randomised trials of AG in humans in India have demonstrated its efficacy in reducing anxiety and stress, improving muscle strength and reducing symptoms of fatigue in patients treated for chronic conditions.
- It has also been indicated for treating non-restorative sleep, a hallmark of chronic fatigue.
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