If you are trying to learn more about adaptogens, your body will thank you. Adaptogens sound mysterious, but these herbal medicines are designed to keep your body working at its best. If your wellness program already consists of eating healthy, exercising regularly, and getting enough sleep, enjoying the benefits of adaptogens should further improve your overall health.
In this article:
- What Are Adaptogens?
- Benefits of Adaptogens
- List of Adaptogens
- Adaptogens Side Effects
- When to Ask Your Doctor
How Your Body Benefits from Adaptogens
What Are Adaptogens?
Adaptogens are herbal remedies that work with your body’s natural healing strengths. Instead of taking traditional prescription medicine, for example, you use adaptogens for energy, adaptogens for anxiety, and adaptogens for stress.
These natural remedies have limited side effects and can be found in your local health food store or the health food section of your grocery store. The key is to determine which areas of your body are in need of additional help. Then, you match the correct adaptogen to that area of your body.
At times, you may only need one. Other times, you can combine one or two to boost your body’s needs. They can be mixed into your coffees, smoothies, and teas. Some even come in pill form, and you swallow them as you would your daily vitamins.
Benefits of Adaptogens
Since adaptogens are herbal remedies, they are able to provide many benefits to the body. Some herbs help to regulate hormone functioning to overcome low sex drive. Other herbs restore your ability to sleep, while some give you an energy boost to focus throughout the day.
Certain adaptogens are helpful to reduce stress, anxiety, and depression, while others improve the strength of your hair and nails. In other words, if you are feeling an imbalance in any area, you will find an adaptogen that helps return your body to a more balanced state.
When the body is in balance, all of your systems are functioning at their best. This healthy functioning supports muscle growth, weight loss, mental focus, stress release, and healthy sleep. You may also find relief from digestive concerns which allows you to eat healthier foods and helps your body absorb nutrients from food.
As your body stays in balance, your mental balance also improves, and you feel less worried and anxious. The best adaptogens are the ones that help you restore your individual body’s needs.
List of Adaptogens
Some of the more common adaptogens include:
Adaptogens for Energy
- Ginseng to boost energy
- Maca which helps improve energy levels
- Cordyceps to restore adrenal balance and energy
Adaptogens for Anxiety
- Ashwagandha improves thyroid function to help overcome anxiety
- Licorice root to decrease anxiety caused by stress
- Lion’s mane for anxiety and depression
- Rhodiola for depression
- Schisandra to improve adrenal functioning
- Licorice root to support healthy cortisol levels
- Eleutherococcus to decrease energy fatigue
- Rhodiola helps to enhance adrenal gland functioning
- Ashwagandha restores cortisol levels and adrenal health
Adaptogens for Stress
- Rhodiola decreases stress
- Eleutherococcus reduces physical tiredness and also lessens stress
- Pruriens helps the body produce dopamine to help you relax
- Ashwagandha reduces stress caused by excess cortisol
- Licorice root restores healthy levels of cortisol to reduce feelings of stress
Adaptogens for Heart Health
- Rhodiola to protect your heart
- Schisandra to restore healthy heart functioning
- Meldonium to protect the heart from changes that happen during the winter
Adaptogens List for Immunity
- Ashwagandha to support a return to healthy immune function after being ill
- Maca supports healthy vitamin C levels and immunity
- Chaga comes from a mushroom shown to elevate immune levels
- Astragalus supports stronger immune systems that may be low due to cancer treatments
- Rhodiola protects your immune system from illness and disease
Adaptogens Side Effects
Most of the side effects of taking an adaptogen are the ones you want. These include a stronger immune system, better heart functioning, and reduced stress and anxiety.
Some of the herbal remedies have other side effects to be aware of. For example, the most common are upset stomachs or diarrhea. This is most likely because your body is not used to the adaptogen or it may also be that you are taking in too much of it. Switch to a smaller dosage to see if the digestive symptoms go away. If not, that adaptogen may not be the best for you.
Another side effect you may feel is tiredness, especially if the adaptogen works to improve sleep. You may need to take the adaptogen later in the day so the fatigue will not interfere with your activities. Some may also affect blood pressure by increasing it or decreasing it. So if you take medications to keep your blood pressure within a healthy range, it is best to speak with your doctor before beginning the use of adaptogens.
When to Ask Your Doctor
As with all medicines, whether herbal or not, speak with your doctor first. If your doctor does not want to talk about natural medicinal solutions, try to find a homeopathic or natural doctor that will help you fit adaptogens into your wellness routine. Then, ask for a list of adaptogens that will help with your specific needs, whether they are to increase your energy level, improve your sex drive, restore your sleep, or improve your mood. Herbal remedies have the ability to return your body to balance in a natural way with limited side effects.
Let this infographic be your guide. Download it now and use it as a reference later.
Once you begin adding adaptogens into your healthy lifestyle, you may see and feel large or small improvements. Some of these include the ability to sleep better, recover faster from workouts or to focus more while at work. Reduced stress is a big benefit of adaptogens as stress can affect all areas of your life. Once you remember what it feels like to have a body that is in balance and working together toward your health, you will not want to go back to feeling sluggish or sleepy. Adaptogens are a simple way to boost your routine and help you get the overall wellness benefits you seek.
Do you take medicine for aches and pains or do you prefer a more homeopathic approach? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.