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The Rise of Adaptogenic Supplements

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Adaptogenic supplements are the natural option to support the balance of your inner functions, help you cope better with stress and anxiety, keep your energy levels high, and help you rest well at night. How do they do all these? By identifying your body’s needs and regulating its functions, hormones, moods, and systems in order to reduce the negative effects that stressors have on health. 

Challenging times have pushed researchers towards the study of these amazing plants that help the human body to smoothly cope with stress and related issues using natural ingredients. As proof of their efficiency, consumption has increased steadily to become one of the most popular supplements in recent years, according to nutritionaloutlook.com and foodbeverageinsider.com, among others.

Adaptogens are said to be able to identify every person’s particular needs and intervene precisely when and where it’s needed

Dealing with stress

The negative effects of stress and exhaustion on both physical and mental health often come with considerable consequences, sometimes even leading to serious illnesses.

Some of these stressful situations – also called stressors – might sound familiar to many of us:

・Work-related stress, such as a heavy workload, long working hours, poor management, unclear expectations, and job insecurity.

・Life changes, such as moving to a new house, getting married, having a baby, getting divorced, losing a loved one, or any other change that can disrupt normal routines, requiring adaptation and coping skills.

・Financial stress, such as debt, low income, unemployment, or unexpected expenses.

・Health issues, such as chronic illness, injury, disability, or mental disorders which can limit functioning, cause pain, or require treatment.

・Environmental stressors, such as noise, pollution, crowding, or natural disasters.

 
Adaptogenic Supplements pura fons 2
Stress is experienced differently by each person - therefore, it’s hard to find a “one-size-fits-all” solution

This is where adaptogens prove their unique qualities: they are said to be able to identify every person’s particular needs and intervene precisely when and where it’s needed.

This has raised the interest of modern scientists, who are motivated to study the qualities of these plants. A recent article published by Forbes states that “Researchers say adaptogenic herbs interact with the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis, which is a complex system of glands, hormones, and receptors in the human body. The HPA axis is central to the body’s homeostasis, stress responses, and energy metabolism.”

gotu kola green leaf salad
Gotu kola is used in Asian cuisines as a leafy green in salads with onions, crushed nuts, and beans

Getting enough rest

Besides dealing with everyday stress, another crucial aspect is getting enough rest. Your body and mind need good quality sleep in order to regenerate and recharge. Good quality sleep is crucial for maintaining good health and well-being, with an impact on various aspects – from maintaining a healthy weight to productivity and immunity.

Unfortunately, a busy, agitated lifestyle can often make you feel restless at night. This means difficulty falling asleep, insomnia, waking up often during the night, or sleeping an insufficient number of hours.

When you do not get enough sleep, your body produces excessive appetite hormones, which lead to consuming more food than you need, and consequently to undesired weight gain.

Obviously, a lack of sleep also affects concentration, productivity, memory, and problem-solving skills which can affect your efficiency at work.

In order to avoid all these issues and to improve your sleep, you need to follow a regular sleep schedule, avoid caffeine, alcohol, nicotine, and heavy meals close to bedtime.

The environment is important as well: the place where you sleep should be dark, quiet, and the temperature should be around 18 degrees Celsius. Try to avoid screen time before bed and try relaxing activities such as reading or meditating instead.

But even when all the conditions for a good sleep are met, you could still find it hard to rest. Sometimes, it is easier said than done to achieve the recommended sleep time of 7 hours per night. This is where adaptogenic mushrooms, herbs, roots, and berries prove their ability to identify your body’s needs and soothe its reaction to stress, so that you can fall asleep and enjoy a good night’s rest.

Let’s find out more about adaptogenic supplements and discover all their benefits!

purple astragalus flowers
While the root is used for its health benefits, astragalus has flowers that spread abundantly in wild fields

The most popular adaptogens and their benefits

Ashwagandha – this amazing root has been used for more than 2,000 years in India to support stress management. It gives the body the ability to adjust to and handle life’s obstacles. When under stress, this highly valued supplement is what you need in order to regain equilibrium. It is also an excellent option for people who occasionally feel anxious or need to relieve tension and welcome peace of mind.

Gotu kola – one of the most spiritual plants in India, it has long been used in Ayurvedic medicine and is frequently used to improve meditation. It is regarded as an excellent supplement for brain and nerve health. Gotu kola relieves tension and helps to calm the mind, while at the same time helping concentration and cognitive functions. It also improves blood purity, pressure, and circulation.

Schisandra – originating from China, this berry has been used in traditional medicine since ancient times and it’s known for its combination of sour, sweet, bitter, spicy, and salty tastes. It supports adrenal gland health, combats stress, enhances mental clarity and vitality, and promotes tranquility and sleep. Schisandra also aids in hormone regulation by balancing the production of key hormones like cortisol and testosterone. Among other positive effects, consuming schisandra supplements improves the aspect of the skin.

Tulsi – also known as Holy Basil, this is a potent supplement said to maintain mental health and happiness. This plant is highly valued in Ayurveda thanks to its ability to aid in stress management and promote optimism.

Astragalus – this traditional Chinese herb has been used for millennia to boost the immune system, fight infections, and improve overall health. It contains compounds like saponins, glycans, and flavonoids that contribute to its health benefits. Astragalus is not only an adaptogen, but is also an immunity booster that increases the production of white blood cells which are responsible for fighting infections. It reduces stress levels by increasing the production of GABA, a calming neurotransmitter. Moreover, it also promotes better sleep by increasing the production of melatonin, a hormone that regulates sleep-wake cycles.

 

Adaptogens have been used in traditional medicine for millennia and are becoming increasingly popular in the modern world. Whether you want to increase your energy, relax your nerves, or improve your mood, there is an option for you. They come in a variety of forms and combinations – as powders, pills, or liquid extracts.

 

Consult your doctor before using – try incorporating them into your everyday routine and feel the difference for yourself. Adaptogenic supplements are more than a rising trend – they are a way of life!

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