KSM-66 uses only the roots of the ashwagandha plant with absolutely no addition of leaves. Our financial advisors point out that our profits would be far higher if we replaced roots with leaves, given that the price of leaves is often less than 1/15th the price of roots. Despite that, our founders have stood by their basic principle to use roots only. Customers are often curious to know why. To understand our rationale, it helps to know a little about our company. We are a family-owned business founded with the sole mission of supplying the absolute best quality ashwagandha. To be faithful to our mission, we feel it necessary to stay close to mainstream practice and modern scientific evidence. Both in independent clinical trials and in thousands of years of traditional use, the root is the part of the plant that is used predominantly for adaptogenic benefits and internal ingestion. The primary use of leaves traditionally was for topical treatments on the skin for conditions like burns or carbuncles, not internal consumption. The use of the roots is on significantly better scientific foundation in terms of human clinical evidence and period of observation than the use of leaves.
- Ashwagandha root consumption has been much heavier with much greater opportunity to observe its safety than ashwagandha leaf consumption.
- The predominant majority of published clinical trials today are on the root and not the leaf.
- The coverage of ashwagandha in reference works like the pharmacopoeias is only on the root. These reference works are the United States Pharmacopoeia, the British Pharmacopoeia, the Indian Pharmacopoeia, the Ayurvedic Pharmacopoeia, Indian Materia Medica, the Health Canada monograph and the W.H.O. monograph. The leaf is in fact not even mentioned in any of them for therapeutic use and ingestion.
- Regulatory bodies in some European countries allow only the root of ashwagandha plant and not the leaves.
Given that the leaves are plentiful and easily accessible, what reason would Ayurveda practitioners have to go through all the trouble to dig up the root if not their strong belief that the root is better? The pursuit of the ashwagandha root is notable indeed in Ayurveda. Even the very name of the herb (“ashwa” for horse and “gandha” for smell) is owing to the root which smells like a horse, according to Ayurveda texts.
KSM-66 is Ixoreal’s ashwagandha extract, created via a process that took 14 years of R&D to develop and refine. KSM-66 is the best ashwagandha extract on the world market today in the sense that it is the highest concentration full-spectrum extract available today. A “full-spectrum” extract is an extract which maintains the balance of the various constituents as in the original herb, without over-representing any one constituent. The ashwagandha herb’s efficacy is believed to be derived from a complex blend of active constituents. All the constituents need to be present in their natural proportions, which is why it is important for an extract to be full-spectrum. However, producing a high concentration full-spectrum extract is technologically very challenging. Only Ixoreal has managed to create a process that surmounts these challenges, and that too only after many years of R&D. The Ixoreal science team sought to introduce to the world the true quintessence of ashwagandha with all its benefits. Convinced that the essence of the ashwagandha root could be extracted without losing its potency, the science team dedicated itself to learning the nuances of plant chemistry and did what no one was able to achieve until then. With `Green Chemistry` processing, they were able to holistically extract all the root essence while preserving its natural healing potency. This proved to be immensely successful.
KSM-66’s extraction process entails pre-treating the ashwagandha roots with milk. For this reason, it contains milk constituents. Such pre-treatment is consistent with the process described by traditional ayurveda healers and texts. However, the traditional process does not scale up very well. Ixoreal has taken this traditional method and refined it greatly so that it produces high quality ashwagandha in a scalable manner, combining the traditional with the modern. Therein lies Ixoreal’s “secret sauce”, a highly proprietary process that took 14 years to develop and implement. The milk pre-treatment is important in our extraction process because this is in fact what leads to retention of both hydrophilic components and lipophilic components of the raw root, which in turn leads to a full-spectrum extract of such high-potency.