PNBA athlete Dillon shared the benefits of ashwagandha, including boosting testosterone and muscle growth.
Most of your gym gains will come from your workout and proper nutrition. However, certain supplements have been proven to boost strength and muscle growth, and ashwagandha is one of them. Professional Natural Bodybuilding Association (PNBA) athlete Dillon listed the many benefits supplementing with ashwagandha provides.
Dillon competes in the PNBA Men’s Physique pro division. In a social media post, Dillon says that ashwagandha can lower stress and anxiety, improve your heart health, control blood glucose levels, boost testosterone, and help you build strength and muscle.
Dillon’s full IG post below lists the benefits of ashwagandha and shows him doing cable rope tricep extensions and flexing his triceps.
View this post on Instagram
What Is Ashwagandha?
Ashwagandha is an herb derived from plants in Asia and Africa. Ayurveda, Indian alternative medicine, uses this herb as a natural remedy. You can take ashwagandha as a capsule or powder. It’s been shown to relieve stress, increase energy, and boost cognitive function.
Furthermore, many gym enthusiasts and bodybuilders will take it to boost their workout performance. Studies have shown that ashwagandha effectively builds muscle and strength (1). And this study found a 14.7% increase in testosterone production after supplementing with the herb (2).
- Lower stress and anxiety
- Improve heart health
- Control glucose
- Boost testosterone
- Gain strength and muscle
Other ways to boost testosterone naturally include consuming foods high in zinc and magnesium and avoiding or limiting unhealthy lifestyle factors such as drinking too much alcohol. PNBA Hall of Famer Chad Martin has a complete list on optimizing T production naturally. Testosterone is vital for maximizing your gains in the gym. So the more testosterone you have, the more muscle you’ll build.
Natural Bodybuilding and Supplementation
As a natural bodybuilder, it’s imperative to take natural supplements to gain an edge in the gym. Of course, steroids boost T production. But steroids and other performance-enhancing (PEDs) can have side effects. And PEDs are prohibited in natural bodybuilding. Therefore, natural bodybuilders only take natural products.
For example, the 2021 Natural Olympia reigning Men’s Physique Open pro champ William Long takes ashwagandha and many other natural supplements.
William Long’s Supplements
- Greens Formula
- Fish Oil
- Whey Protein
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin D3
- Fat Burner
The INBA PNBA league follows the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) guidelines–you can view their 2022 complete list of banned substances here.
Undoubtedly, your diet and exercise regimen is the most critical components to building a fantastic physique. However, certain supplements do help with your natural bodybuilding journey. For example, ashwagandha is a natural herb that will help you boost strength, muscle growth, and testosterone levels.
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- Wankhede, S., Langade, D., Joshi, K., Sinha, S. R., & Bhattacharyya, S. (2015). Examining the effect of Withania somnifera supplementation on muscle strength and recovery: a randomized controlled trial. Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, 12, 43. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12970-015-0104-9
- Lopresti, A. L., Drummond, P. D., & Smith, S. J. (2019). A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled, Crossover Study Examining the Hormonal and Vitality Effects of Ashwagandha ( Withania somnifera) in Aging, Overweight Males. American journal of men’s health, 13(2), 1557988319835985. https://doi.org/10.1177/1557988319835985