There are many ways to manage stress, from breathing exercises to forest walks and a variety of relaxation tips. When it comes to dietary supplements, there are also new products available to relieve stress. The KSM66 ashwagandha has recently revolutionized the market thanks to its power to slow down bodies and minds on overdrive. But what exactly is KSM66 ashwagandha and why does it help with stress?
Phytonomist Outi Häkkinen and food supplement guru Sami Larste visited us to talk about the joys of ashwagandha. The meticulously researched Harmonia KSM66 is the hottest ashwagandha supplement on the market. The product has already broken into the mainstream in Sweden, and it has become a similar success story in Finland.
The studies of KSM66 are Pubmed-level, double-blind, and placebo-controlled studies. They have studied the effects of the basic raw material of KSM66, i.e. ashwagandha extracted following Ayurvedic methods – no other ashwagandha qualities. In that sense, you can use this product proudly, Sami Larste emphasizes.
The real stuff, drawing on millennia of tradition
Harmonia’s KSM66-ashwagandha is a so-called full spectrum product; no other substances have been added to it, and in addition it is packaged in consumer packaging that follows the packaging used in the study. Thus, by ingesting two capsules a day – one in the morning and one in the evening – everyone can repeat the study setup themselves. Larste admits that he likes to enjoy the product even more often, but Häkkinen recommends keeping two capsules a day as a rule.
“Less is often more. There are some user groups that I would recommend starting with a double dose boost at first, but even then, this should not be continued for months, Häkkinen explains.
KSM66 is not a completely vegan product due to its Ayurvedic, i.e. milk-based, production method. The product contains milk residues, although only in negligible amounts. For example, for people with lactose intolerance, the amount does not cause problems,” Häkkinen assures. The name of the product also derives from its Ayurvedic method of preparation, in which herbs are extracted in milk. The final result was reached only after 66 extractions.
“I admire this product. The millennial tradition has been commercialized by means of modern phytotherapy, so that the efficacy of the product has also been proven by clinical trials,” Häkkinen says.
Taking two steps back
Ashwagandha’s effectiveness as a stress reliever is based on a relaxing effect. Larste emphasizes that ashwagandha is by no means an adaptogen that acts in a stimulating way like rose root or ginseng, for example. For the same reason, ashwagandha should not be used in combination with stimulating adaptogens; it is not dangerous, of course, but their effects are mutually exclusive. Stimulating adaptogens give you an extra gear, while ashwagandha wants to take it easy, so to speak.
“Instead of rushing ahead to fix things, we take a couple of steps back and normalize certain states of overactivity,” Larste explains.
In stressful situations, it is not necessarily sustainable to start adding anything on an unstable foundation. First the situation needs to be normalized, and only then can it be built on. When the body and mind are in balance, the stimulating adaptogens work better.
In combating stress, the balancing effect of KSM66 is welcomed. Because of products relaxing and promotive effects to mental health, it can help with sleep difficulties. According to Häkkinen, the effect of KSM66 is like releasing a handbrake: when one part of our body is overly active, it can inhibit the action of other parts, meaning a “handbrake” is activated. Ashwagandha helps to release these handbrakes and thus balance the action of whole body.
Harmony KSM66 helps body function by normalizing both body and mind. However, despite its studied efficacy, KSM66 is not a cure-all that would make problems effortlessly disappear, but rather creates favorable conditions for the body to repair its own functions. In order to get the full benefit of ashwagandha, users must ensure a varied and adequate diet so that the body has the building blocks needed for repair work.
When life presents challenges, such as entrance exams or an important interview, Häkkinen recommends starting to use KSM66 no later than two weeks before the event. The product does not remove stress, but helps to adapt to the situation and thus perform the task better, as well as return to a normal state faster. There are exceptions to the rule of thumb of a few weeks, however.
“I've heard several stories about how, already three days after using KSM66, breathing has become easier, and things or other people do not cause aggravation anymore.
Although it may be beneficial for the users of several supplements, including ashwagandha, to take breaks from using them, there is no need to stop using KSM66. According to Häkkinen, this is due to the traditional water extraction method, which makes the product balancing rather than stimulating.
“It does not force, turn or twist you in any direction, but allows the body to return to its normal vital functions,” Häkkinen says.
Larste and Häkkinen include a tip for those interested in using ashwagandha: ginger helps with absorption. If using ashwagandha doesn’t seem right for your body, you might want to take a couple of weeks off and enjoy fresh ginger every morning. You can then start using it again.
A restful mind when awake and asleep
Many have also found that KSM66 helps with sleep problems. This was also the case for Sami Larste.
“I am often asked what benefits I have experienced by using KSM66. The most obvious benefit has been that it allows me to fall asleep again in the early hours if I have woken up for some reason. I recommend that people who wake up in the middle of the night try it out – you will sleep peacefully for the rest of the night,” says Larste.
Stress causes insomnia for most people. KSM66 relaxes you and takes care of your mental health, so it is easier to go to bed with peace of mind and in a good mood.
“Research also supports this. In one study, 70 percent of those who used KSM66 experienced reduced restlessness and improved sleep quality, compared with 12 percent in the control group,” Larste says.
At its best, Harmonia KSM66 can also bring peace to the workplace, because when your mind is in balance it is easier to manage work tasks and get along with co-workers.
“Perhaps the funniest thing I've heard a colleague say is, “Oh, so you’ve taken ashwagandha for a week or so – no wonder you have been so much easier to get along with!" Häkkinen laughs.
According to Larste, what makes the product exceptional is that it has had an exceptionally high hit rate – that is, the percentage of returning buyers – since its launch in Sweden.
“Depending on the channel, 70 to 90 percent of those who bought the product returned to buy more. From this we can conclude that people have actually experienced the effect of the product. This is also a great thing for the importer in that it does not have to rely only on research results – the genuine user experience speaks for itself,” says Larste.
Health claims based on EFSA:
M-2008-1061 2183 - Withania somnifera (common name: Ashwagandha) - Mental Health and relaxation
M-2008-1061 2503 - Withania somnifera (Withania, horse smell, ginseng Indian, ashwagandha) - Cardiovascular health
M-2008-1061 3251 - Ashwagandha root (Withania somnifera) - Adaptogenic properties
M-2008-1061 4507 - Withania somnifera-roots-Ashwagandha, Winter cherry - Antioxidant Activity