The wellness business is booming these days, as more and more people are taking a proactive approach to their own health. We’re eating the right foods and exercising several times a week to live longer and higher-quality lives.
We’re paying attention to ways to improve our diets to achieve better mental health and increase energy levels. Basically, we are more educated today about foods and ingredients that can help us reduce stress and lower high blood pressure.
A common topic of conversation around the office seems to be, "What’s in your smoothie?" It can be a challenge to keep up with so many trending superfoods like chia seeds, matcha, açaí and hemp. Now the latest buzz is all about adaptogens.
What Are Adaptogens?
Adaptogens are designed to help our bodies “adapt” to life’s torrent of environmental and emotional stressors. Functional medicine guru Frank Lipman, MD, calls the term adaptogen “nature’s miracle anti-stress and fatigue fighters.”
Adaptogenic herbs help to create more balance within the body, so you can function at your fullest. Here are things to know about adaptogens and what’s trending in supplement forms.
This is a root powder often used in Ayurvedic medicine to improve vitality, relieve stress and boost cognitive activity.* It’s also a key ingredient in Swisse Women’s 50+ Ultivite Multivitamin.
Ashwagandha is generally known for soothing the nervous system. It benefits the body as a regulator of stress hormones and as a treatment for adrenal fatigue. It may also be a possible remedy for arthritis and thyroid dysfunction.
This earthy root is slightly bitter and will overpower most smoothies, so it can also be scooped into your morning coffee.
Another popular adaptogen, or superfood, is the reishi mushroom. An edible fungus, reishi mushrooms have been used by the Chinese for thousands of years for their potent healing properties.
Studies over the past 30 years in China, Japan, England and the U.S. have revealed positive evidence about these fungi. They can help aid in the regulation of the body’s organs and systems.
As an adaptogen, reishi mushrooms address the effects of stress, such as low energy, inflammation and hormonal imbalance. Its antioxidant properties can improve the immune system and mental clarity. It may also help fight against tumors, heart disease, autoimmune issues, allergies and liver disease.*
Reishi mushrooms contain antioxidants that help protect cells from potential free radical damage. It’s a key ingredient in Swisse Ultiboost Lung Health Support.
Reishi mushrooms are also said to reduce anxiety, depression and insomnia. Known for their bitter, woody taste, they come in various forms, such as tinctures, powder, supplements, tea or as a soup.
Another adaptogenic herb, Astragalus is a naturally sourced ingredient in Swisse Ultivite multivitamins. It supports the liver and potentially helps the body resist disease by supporting immune function.*
Swiss also sources other adaptogens in its men’s and women’s multivitamins, such as Asian Ginseng and Siberian Ginseng. Eleuthero, the proper name for Siberian ginseng, may be helpful in modulating the body’s stress response. These adaptogens act more as stimulants that soothers, enhancing energy, sex drive and stamina.*
More studies are needed to confirm the specific effects of adaptogens on humans. Functional medicine doctors and adaptogens experts emphasize that it’s not in your best interest to ingest them daily.
They suggest you take one day off per week or one week off per month when consuming them. Talk to your doctor first before adding them to your diet, as some supplements or herbs can interfere with medications.
*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.