First thing’s first… What is an adaptogen?! Adaptogens are a type of herb, or herbal combination, that offer a range of health benefits and have been used effectively in natural medicine for thousands of years. Such health benefits may include boosting energy, counteracting symptoms of stress, enhanced immune function and antioxidant action. Including adaptogens into your life in one way or another is a great way to gain a broad range of physical and mental health benefits, with an all-encompassing, ‘tonic’ effect.
Why Are Adaptogens the Beez Kneez for Health?
One of the most appealing qualities of adaptogens is that they can quiet a stress-activated enzyme, therefore helping to mediate your stress response. Adaptogens are also frequently used for their strong antioxidant-like actions. They will work to produce proteins that help resist stress and enhance longevity, thereby protecting the cell mitochondria (your energy producers) from stress-induced damage. This is why adaptogens are used in many natural anti-ageing formulations. In addition to this, adaptogens help regulate the immune and nervous systems and may have anti-depressant effects on the body.
Each and every adaptogen has its own unique properties. The part of the herb used, the way the herb is grown, the way it is harvested & processed, as well as the combination of herbs used in the final product will all impact proper, safe, therapeutic use. Adaptogens can be thought as similar to the vitamins and minerals we obtain from our food for specific health benefits; to exert beneficial health properties on your body.
4 Adaptogens to Get Started With and WHY…
Ashwagandha is a great one to begin your adaptogen-journey with and to enjoy often! It is a staple of the ayurvedic herbal world and invigorates awesome energy, as well as sound sleeping at night. For this reason, it works equally well as a morning elixir as it does to wind down in the evenings.
Known as the “Queen Healer” or the “mushroom of spiritual potency” reishi has amazing benefits for immune health, supporting a great mood and helping to regulate stress levels. It has also been found to support a healthy digestive system and has relaxing properties to help regulate energy levels. You might find that including reishi in its powdered form into a daily tonic, juice or smoothie will set you up for the best day ahead!
There are a couple of types of Ginseng to consider when talking about the adaptogen as a whole. Asian Ginseng has been around for centuries and is considered to have “heating” properties, which make it a fatigue fighter and enhancer of mental performance. On the converse, American Ginseng, which is the less-researched adaptogen of the two, may boost your immune system function, provide antioxidant properties, work as an anti-inflammatory, and most important, may be useful as an all-round stress tonic.
Chlorella is a single-celled green algae that is a wonderful adaptogen to enjoy each morning in a glass of water. We all know by now that getting as many greens into your daily intake as possible is key to amazing health, and this is the perfect start! Similar to its cousin spirulina, chlorella may help rid the body of toxins and will support your overall wellbeing in a variety of ways. Stock up your pantry with this beautiful green powder and consume it in a glass of water or add it to your daily green smoothie for an extra health boost.
By now you are probably desperate to start incorporating adaptogens into your every day for their overall support to your health, helping to protect from stress, enhance energy and brain function, and more! Let us know in the comments below if you’ve got any fave adaptogens and what you use them for. We’d love to learn more!xo