Find Some Calm with Adaptogens
What is all the Fuss about Adaptogens?
Adaptogens are very trendy right now…and for good reason! They help reduce the effects of chronic stress and anxiety in the body.
Chronic stress can have a lasting impact on your body and brain health. Too much cortisol production can lead to adrenal fatigue, heart issues, and poor hormone function. These plants can be used to help you feel calmer and more relaxed when you are feeling stressed or are experiencing anxiety. Unlike prescription medication, these herbs do not cause you to have the same side effects such as sleeplessness that medication may have.
While I do not suggest you replace your medication with an adaptogen, you could consider adding up to three adaptogens to your daily routine. Adaptogens can come in the form of a supplement, powder, tincture, or tea.
Eleuthero (Siberean Ginseng)
Studies have indicated that Eleuthero can enhance mental performance, concentration, boost immunity and bring alertness.
Take 300-1,200 mg of the herb in the morning as it may cause sleeplessness if taken later in the day.
Schisandra can stimulate central nervous system without over-excitation. Think of it like a gentle wake up for your body.
Steep up to 3 grams of Schisandra in hot water for 40-60 minutes with ginger, cinnamon, or turmeric for flavor.
Rhodiola promotes calm and can have an anti-fatigue effect. This adaptogen optimizes immune system, hormone balance, and decreases cortisol response. It is a great herb to use when you are feeling stressed out.
Best to start with 100 mg once a day for a week and see how you feel. You may increase your dosage up to 400mg.
Ashwagandha (Indian Ginseng)
This is my current favorite adaptogen. It promotes mental and physical vitality, helps to stabilize cortisol levels, and aids sleep.
I like to add about 1/2 a tsp of powder into my coffee in the morning for a gentler caffeine boost. I feel less jittery and more focused when I add in the Ashwagandha.
Cordyceps and Reishi Mushrooms
Supports adrenal function, can hep maintain blood sugar levels, and can help to regulate cortisol levels.
These inflammation fighters can be stirred into an evening latte with 1 cup almond milk and a bit of honey and cinnamon to taste.
Maca root has the ability to reduce anxiety and depression. It has a taste similar to butterscotch which could be really nice in a smoothie, oatmeal bake, or baked good!
I like to blend about 1 tsp. into a smoothie with banana, almond butter, spinach, and almond milk.
Brooks, N.A., Wilcox, G., Walker, K.Z., Ashton, J.F., Cox, M.B., & Stojanovska, L. (2008, Sep 6). Beneficial effects of Lepidium meyenii (Maca) on psychological symptoms and measures of sexual dysfunction in postmenopausal women are not related to estrogen or androgen content [Abstract]. Menopause, 15(6):1157-62. PMID:18784609
Image from: https://www.dietspotlight.com/adaptogen/