Week #37 featured

Adaptogens.

Have you heard that term?  You can’t be in the alternative health field very long before you hear that word bandied about….

So I wanted to share what I know….here is a quick intro on adaptogens…check it out to see if they might make sense for you…(3:18)

So to recap:
If you are familiar with herbal remedies you will have probably already have heard about adaptogens but if you haven’t – you are not alone (it was all new to me too).

That doesn’t mean that they’re new – adaptogens have been used for hundreds of years in Chinese medicine and Ayurvedic medicine –we just have a fancy name for them now.

I can’t talk about adaptogens without talking about stress.

When you are stressed, your body has a physiological response. And when that stress is chronic, that physiological response can manifest itself in a number of different ways. High blood pressure, heart disease, high blood sugar, inflammation, decreased immunity (believe me, the list goes on). Yep, chronic stress can wreak havoc on your body (I talk more about the negative effects of chronic stress here).

So what does stress have to do with adaptogens?

An adaptogen helps your body cope and manage the physical reaction to stress, whether it’s physical, emotional or environmental.

There are three criteria that define a herb as an adaptogen:
1 It is non-toxic,
2 It produces a total body response that increases the resistance to stress,
3 It has a balancing effect, and it improves the function of many body systems (like your immune system).

There’s about a dozen or so different adaptogens, each with its own unique characteristics. Because they have whole body healing properties, it is challenging to pinpoint exactly what they do (they usually have more than one effect). Adaptogens can be stimulating or calming, some can ramp up the immune system others calm it down, some can increase mental clarity and stamina, others can improve endurance.
Not only that, adaptogens can work differently with different people and even with different dosages.
The idea is to choose an adaptogen that works best for you – someone who works with herbs can help identify what your body needs.

Some adaptogens include:

American Ginseng
Siberian Ginseng
Liquorice Root
Rhodiola
Astragalus
Schizandra Berry
Reishi Mushroom
Holy Basil
Ashwagandha

Bottom line: adaptogens can help you adapt better to stress…(see what I did there?)

You can take adaptogens in many different forms: as a tea, a tincture or even a powder or tablet.

Now I do want to say – if you want help to manage the stress in your life and you look to adaptogens, this doesn’t give you the green light to continue your life full steam ahead. Adaptogens are a coping strategy, not a solution….It’s important to look for other strategies to help you manage the stress in your life (funny enough, I have another video on that topic ☺).

So there you go – you now know what an adaptogen is (feel better?)

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Thanks so much for watching!

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