What To Know About Adaptogens
If you like to keep up with trends regarding health and wellness supplements, you may have heard the word “adaptogens” before. They’re in smoothies, coffee, teas, wellness shots, and are a big hit in pre-made mocktails.
To sum up an adaptogen definition, it’s simply a non-toxic substance, usually plant-based, that can help to counteract the negative effects of poor mental health and stress. Some adaptogens may help lower your blood sugar, blood pressure, and boost immunity. These herbal supplements have been around for years. In fact, you may have adaptogens in your vitamin regimen right now. Let’s go over some adaptogenic herb benefits.
Adaptogens for Sleep
Natural sleep aids are in demand and have been for decades. Many people struggle with getting an adequate amount of rest, but some are hesitant about taking a prescription sleep aid. Here are some of the most popular adaptogens for sleep.
- Chamomile. Most of us are familiar with this one. Chamomile is one of the star players in many herbal teas, and with good reason — it may help with relaxation and sleep. It’s also been purported to help lower blood sugar, improve cold symptoms, and even slow down osteoporosis.
- Valerian root. The valerian root is another adaptogen that is supposed to help you get some shut-eye. It affects your GABA and serotonin receptors, which may also help ease your anxiety.
Adaptogens for Stress
It’s safe to say that most of us experience some levels of anxiety and stress. Here are some common adaptogens that many turn to for relief.
- Holy basil. Holy basil may help your body and brain deal with stress. It may also aid in sleep.
- Ashwagandha. If you’ve looked into adaptogens at all, you’ve most likely run into this powerful herb. Many supplements and drinks contain this popular adaptogen.
Along with stress, ashwagandha has also been linked to improving:
- Sex drive
- Blood sugar
- Cardiorespiratory endurance
Adaptogens for Weight Loss
Chronic stress can elevate cortisol levels, which may lead to weight gain. Since many adaptogens on the market are purported to help with stress, hormones, and adequate sleep levels, weight loss may be a natural result. Here are two adaptogens that may help with weight loss:
- Cordyceps. This mighty mushroom has a bit of an edge compared to other adaptogens regarding weight loss — it’s purported to help your endurance during exercise.
- Rhodiola Rosea. This adaptogen may also help with exercise by increasing your energy levels.
Adaptogens for General Health and Well-being
There are several adaptogens out there that support general health. Two popular ones are ginseng and reishi mushrooms.
- Ginseng. Ginseng is often used as an immunity booster and to improve focus.
- Reishi mushrooms. Reishi mushrooms have been linked to aiding the treatment of a variety of ailments and diseases. Learn more about functional mushrooms.
Adaptogen Side Effects
Just because a supplement is herbal or labeled “all-natural” doesn’t mean it’s safe. In fact, herbal supplements aren’t as strictly regulated as other over-the-counter medications. Here are a few suggestions on how to use adaptogen and other herbal remedies safely:
- Never use herbal supplements as a substitute for prescribed medication. This is a big no-no. You should never discontinue prescribed medication unless you get the okay from your doctor.
- Talk to your doctor before starting any sort of vitamin or herbal regimen. Keeping your doctor in the loop is vital so they know exactly what type of treatment to provide or adjust.
- Ask your pharmacist or doctor about any drug interactions. Vitamins, herbal supplements, and adaptogens can affect the chemicals and hormones in your body, which means they can interact with prescription medication. If you decide to add these to your regimen, talk to a medical professional about possible complications and always include them on the list of medications you’re taking.
- Check your sources. Since herbal supplements aren’t as strictly regulated, it’s important to do your own research and make sure you’re getting your adaptogens from reputable sources.
Are you curious about adaptogens and want to give them a try? After discussing the pros and cons with your doc, check out a few herbal shops in San Diego.
3618 El Cajon Blvd.
San Diego, CA 92104
Ocean Beach People’s Organic Food Market
4765 Voltaire Street
San Diego, CA 92107
Duong Xuan Dong
6947 #F Linda Vista Rd.
San Diego, CA 92111