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14 Ashwagandha Side Effects


Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera) is a herbal supplement used in traditional Ayurvedic medicine.

 It is known to have many benefits, including improving brain function and reducing anxiety.

There are many benefits of taking Ashwagandha supplements. These include improved quality of life, energy increase, and a mood boost.

However, there are some side effects that you may experience when you take these supplements. 

This article will cover the most common side effects that some people may find disturbing.

Side Effects Of Ashwagandha

Ashwagandha is a plant that has been used traditionally in many parts of the world for centuries. 

It is also taken as a supplement and is often used as an alternative to pharmaceuticals for people with anxiety disorders, chronic fatigue, or various other health issues.

Ashwagandha’s side effects include allergic reactions or rashes, stomach issues, irritability, and insomnia.

Ashwagandha is a popular herb used in Ayurveda, an Indian medicine system. It has been used for centuries to improve health and well-being.

However, like all medications and supplements, there are potential side effects associated with ashwagandha use.

Here are some of the most common side effects of ashwagandha:

  1. Headaches And Fainting

    These are some common[1] side effects of ashwagandha, which could occur due to high doses for extended periods.

    It is better to excessive ingestion of this supplement.  Also, avoid excessive intake of alcohol while taking this supplement as it might cause sleep trouble.

  2. Confusion

    Certain individuals who consume large amounts of ashwagandha may experience confusion or drowsiness, especially if there is too much physical activity the day before.

    These effects typically disappear after a few hours after consumption.

  3. Drowsiness

    One of the most common side effects occurs when we take high doses for prolonged periods.

    This feeling usually disappears after a few hours, and you can continue to use the supplement without any problems.

    Make sure you don’t operate heavy machinery or drive[2] while taking ashwagandha as you may become drowsy.

  4. Upset Stomach

    Some people might experience[3] an upset stomach after consuming ashwagandha, followed by diarrhea and abdominal pain.

    This is likely because ashwagandha contains several compounds that can irritate the stomach.

    If this happens to you, drink plenty of fluids and eat something light after taking ashwagandha.

    If you are facing diarrhea-like symptoms, then you might want to contact your doctor immediately. On the other hand, you could also use foods for diarrhea

  5. Fatigue

    There are a few potential side effects to taking ashwagandha. The most common is fatigue.

    It can happen because ashwagandha has a dual action, it both energizes and relaxes the body.

    Over time, the two steps can cancel each other out, leaving you feeling fatigued.

    You may experience fatigue or lightheadedness if you use large amounts of ashwagandha for long periods.

    It is better to take small doses for several days and increase it gradually until your body gets used to it, as this supplement can cause insomnia.

  6. Swelling

    This is one of the side effects of ashwagandha, which occurs in most people.

    However, some experience faster or slow swelling after taking high doses for long periods.

    Usually, it takes about a week or so for the node to become noticeable, and then it will subside after a few days.

    If you experience swelling lasting for more than two weeks, stop using this supplement immediately as it may harm your health.

  7. Weight Gain

    Taking supplements in high amounts triggers weight gain in some people, which may cause problems like excessive thirst and increased appetite.

    Some people have reported that they have experienced weight gain after taking ashwagandha. This is likely because ashwagandha is a natural stimulant.

    If you want to gain weight, it’s essential to be aware of the side effects of any supplement before taking it.

    Speak with your doctor before beginning any new supplement regimen.

  8. Unpleasant Taste

    Many people take ashwagandha for its purported benefits, such as improved memory and concentration.

    However, some people experience an unpleasant taste after taking it. This side effect is likely due to the herbs’ main compound, withanolides.

    While this side effect is rare, it’s essential to be aware of it so that you can decide whether or not to take ashwagandha.

    Some people may have difficulty swallowing the supplement because of its unpleasant taste.

    It is best to keep it away from foods and drinks because they will interfere with absorption.

  9. Sleep Disturbance

    Some people have reported experiencing sleep disturbances after taking ashwagandha.

    It could range from difficulty falling asleep and staying asleep to waking up frequently during the night.

    If you’re experiencing these side effects, it might be best to discontinue the use of the herb and see if that improves your sleep.

  10. Dry Mouth

    Many people take ashwagandha to improve their cognitive function and increase their energy.

    However, some people experience dry mouth as a side effect. If you experience this side effect, you can drink plenty of water or juice to relieve it.

    You can also chew gum or suck on ice chips to keep your mouth hydrated.

    You may also want to take an antacid if you experience heartburn or other stomach problems.

  11. Tremors

    Some people experience tremors when they take ashwagandha. If you experience tremors, it’s best to discontinue using ashwagandha.

    Tremors are most commonly reported when people take higher doses of ashwagandha and usually go away after a few days.

    If you experience persistent tremors, you should speak with your doctor.

  12. Nausea And Vomiting

    Many people use ashwagandha for its purported benefits, but some experience unpleasant side effects.

    A few of the most familiar side consequences are nausea and vomiting.

    While the cause of these side effects is unknown, they may be caused by the chemical composition of ashwagandha.

    If you experience these side effects, discontinue taking the supplement and consult with a doctor.

  13. Skin Rash

    Some people who take ashwagandha supplements experience skin rashes. This is probably due to the high levels of the herb in most supplements.

    There is not much information on the side effects of ashwagandha, but it is also possible that the rash occurs because of an allergic reaction.

    This rash can develop[4] after taking ashwagandha for a short period or if you have an allergy to it.

    Some people also experience an increase in body temperature.

    If you experience a skin rash after taking ashwagandha, stop taking the supplement and consult with a doctor.


There have been many studies conducted on the effects of ashwagandha. After reading through the different ashwagandha benefits and side effects, it’s clear that this herb has a lot of abilities.

However, it’s essential to be aware of the possible side effects to make the best decision for your health.

 While there are many positive effects of ashwagandha, some potential side effects must be taken into account.

If you’re considering taking ashwagandha, be sure to speak with a doctor first to ensure that the benefits outweigh the risks.

It is also essential to take advice from your doctor before starting or stopping ashwagandha treatment.

Ashwagandha is safe if taken in moderation for up to 3 months. Any longer prolonged use may increase the chance of side effects.

Ashwagandha should not be used as an alternative to medication.

Please consult your doctor on using ashwagandha if you take prescription drugs as there may be certain interactions with prescription medications that may reduce their effectiveness or increase their side effects.


Working4Health prefers using primary and verified references. We have strict sourcing guidelines and our primary references include peer-reviewed research, academic, and medical institution studies.

  1. Ashwagandha Last reviewed – 12/10/2021 Available from: https://medlineplus.gov/druginfo/natural/953.html
  2. Drowsy Driving: Asleep at the Wheel Page last reviewed: October 28, 2021 Available from: https://www.cdc.gov/sleep/features/drowsy-driving.html
  3. Ashwagandha Last Update: May 2, 2019 Availe from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK548536/
  4. Virendra N Sehgal, Prashant Verma, Sambit N Bhattacharya Fixed-drug eruption caused by ashwagandha (Withania somnifera): a widely used Ayurvedic drug Skinmed. Jan-Feb 2012;10(1):48-9. Available from: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/22324179/

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