You may hear the word ‘STRESS’ and immediately think of the mental and emotional aspects along the lines of feeling overwhelmed, overly busy, and/or anxiety-driven.
In reality, the body actually encounters different forms of stress every day and is always working to restore equilibrium.
Your body is literally continually being bombarded by stress – even when you don’t feel stressed!
Here are some examples of some everyday stressors:
EXERCISE – yep, it’s healthy for you, but it’s a form of stress the body has to deal with!
LACK OF SLEEP
TOXINS - like exposure to environmental pollutants, heavy metals, and chemicals in personal care and cleaning products
ANXIETY - which can be caused by stress or exacerbates existing stress
Decreasing stress is critical for good health. Too much stress can cause weight gain, poor digestion, an increased inflammatory response, accelerated cellular aging, hormonal imbalances, including adrenal dysfunction - your adrenals are responsible for your body’s response to stress. HERE'S THE GOOD NEWS! There are plenty of ways to reduce the impact of stress in your life, including:
Getting enough sleep
Keep up with a regular exercise routine
Eating a healthy, balanced diet full of whole foods
Practicing tried-and-true stress relief techniques (like massage, and hey, do you even meditate bro?)
Still, if you’re looking for something to naturally supplement your diet with (and, in a way that can minimize the impact that daily stressors have on your body) you might want to consider adding an ADAPTOGEN (or two) to your health plan.
What are Adaptogens?
Adaptogens - or Adaptogenic Herbs - are plant-based supplements (usually in pill or powder form) that do just what they sound like: they can help your body adapt to the stressors of your personal environment.
Adaptogens have a longstanding history of use in ancient medical practices, like TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) and Ayurvedic practices.
Current research has ascertained that Adaptogens boost mental function, attention span, and energy during times of stress and reduce the overall production of inflammatory stress hormones, like Cortisol.
Here are 5 natural adaptogens: · ASHWAGANDHA – decreases anxiety, calming effect · ASIAN GINSENG – reduces fatigue, calming effect · MACA – boosts energy levels, balances hormones · RHODIOLA ROSEA – boosts energy and immune system function · SCHISANDRA FRUIT – enhances energy and cognitive function
How do Adaptogens work?
The molecular pathways involved in the body’s stress response are pretty complicated!
The 3 glands responsible for regulating stress hormones:
Research has found Adaptogens to help support these glands in achieving equilibrium or homeostasis – a fancy way of saying that they help stress hormones get back into balance!
Unlike caffeine, alcohol, and other drugs, Adaptogens can gently help reduce stress hormones, decrease anxiety levels, and prevent fatigue without any crazy spikes or crashes in energy.
How do you take Adaptogens - and are they safe?
Adaptogens are available in pill or powdered form, of which powders can easily be added to teas, smoothies, soups, and other recipes - ***see our recipe at the end!
The best part about these herbal supplements is that it’s not necessary to take every Adaptogen every day, and choosing just one to add to your routine can still provide health benefits.
However, it is recommended that you rotate between Adaptogens (using one at a time for several weeks and then switching to another) if desired, to reap the benefits of several varieties.
You should follow the dosing instructions on the product label or consult with a Natural Health Practitioner for specific Adaptogen recommendations related to the health conditions that you may be experiencing.
It's important to note, though, that while most adaptogens are generally safe for nearly everyone, please supplement with awareness!
Eating well on the go is completely doable if you plan in advance and have strategies in place that will help you make good choices. I can teach you which healthy snacks can complement your weight-loss plan and satisfy your hunger while helping you move toward a healthier, ‘better’ you.
Book a FREE "Lets Talk Strategy" session with me today to plan your way toward a better you!
Until next time, #KeepovingTowardaBetterYou
Want to dive deeper? Check Out My Informative References:
Healthline: Adaptogenic Herbs: List, Effectiveness, and Health Benefits Healthline: Smart Girl’s Guide to Adaptogens for Hormonal Balance and Stress Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 2017: Understanding adaptogenic activity: specificity of the pharmacological action of adaptogens and other phytochemicals