Adaptogens Can Reduce Stress and Boost Energy Levels

You’ve probably heard of adaptogens, even if you’ve never heard them called by this name. Adaptogens are a group of herbs that support adrenal health and clear the body of toxins, thereby assisting the body in managing stress. Some of the more commonly known adaptogens are ginkgo biloba and ginseng, but there are many other herbs in this category you may not have heard of yet.

Adaptogens are all the rage in the health community. Health Blogger’s Community Magazine even called them the “hottest food trend since massaged kale.” However, these natural herbs are far from new and shiny. They’ve been used in Eastern and Ayurvedic medicine for centuries. If you’re trying to figure out how to manage stress (both the bad kind and the good kind, aka energy!) in your life, you may want to consider adding adaptogens to your routine.

How Adaptogens Work

Adaptogens support the adrenal system, which uses hormones to adjust stress levels in the body. For example, elevated levels of hormones like cortisol can put us in a constantly stressed-out state. Conversely, we need enough of these hormones to give us energy and propel us toward action.

Wellness guru Dr. Frank Lipman explains, “Adaptogens can calm you down and boost your energy at the same time without over stimulating. They can normalize body imbalances. By supporting adrenal function, they counteract the adverse effects of stress. “

Which Adaptogens Should You Consume?

There are a plethora of healthy adaptogens out there, but here are a few of the most commonly recommended ones:

  • Ginkgo Biloba: Surely you’ve heard of this commonly used herb. Ginkgo biloba is derived from the leaves of the Chinese ginkgo tree, and is commonly taken to increase brain function. This has to do with its energy-boosting abilities, which make it a great option for those in need of some extra oomph in their day.
  • Siberian Ginseng: Ginseng is known to boost energy and improve focus. Dr. Frank Lipman explains that the mechanism for this may be ginseng’s ability to improve cellular metabolism, increasing energy supply to the cells. It’s also known to boost circulation and physical endurance.
  • Cordyceps: Cordyceps is a mushroom, and according to Health Blogger’s Community Magazine, it was traditionally grown on the bodies of caterpillars in ancient China. Nowadays, it’s generally grown in labs and perfectly vegan-friendly. Cordyceps boosts physical endurance and sexual performance, making it a good adaptogen for those suffering from low libido or sexual energy levels.
  • Rhodiola Rosea: Rhodiola is primarily used to control cortisol levels. Cortisol, a stress hormone, is particularly problematic for middle-aged women, who tend to have elevated cortisol levels that lead to stress and weight gain. Dr. Lipman explains that in addition to stress control, this herb can help with brain function and depression.
  • Ashwagandha: This herb is often prescribed by naturalists for sufferers of insomnia, fatigue, anxiety and impotence. It supports the thyroid as well as adrenal function, making it a good all-around herb for those who need extra energy and balance.
  • Ho Shou Wu: Ho shou wu grows in the mountains of Southern China, according to Stem Cell Nutrition and has been used throughout history to reverse the effects of greying hair. We’re not necessarily vouching for this, but some people swear they’ve seen their hair regain color after adding this herb to their daily routine. Regardless of its hair-changing abilities, ho shou wu also improves kidney and liver health, supports the endocrine system and increases energy.
  • Maca: You can easily find maca powder in most health food stores these days. Arguably the trendiest adaptogen, maca increases energy, libido and stamina, and has been nicknamed “Peruvian ginseng” for its similarities to the other adaptogen.

A final note about herbs: Herbs may be completely natural, but they do have demonstrable health effects on the body.

Check with your doctor before adding herbs to your diet, particularly if you have elevated blood pressure or heart problems. Even if you’re in perfect health, some herbs are known to react with medications. Ginkgo biloba, for example, may decrease the efficacy of hormonal birth control—so be sure to check with your doctor prior to starting a new herbal routine.

88 comments

Jennifer F.
Jennifer F9 months ago

I will agree that herbs can be good for some people but no one should ever try to "cure" serious medical problems on their own! See a medical specialist FIRST!

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Jim Ven
Jim V10 months ago

thanks for sharing.

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Jim Ven
Jim V10 months ago

thanks for the article.

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Kristi M.
Kristi M11 months ago

Thank you for this article!

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Siyus Copetallus
Siyus Copetallus11 months ago

hank you for sharing.

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Telica R.
Telica R11 months ago

Thanks

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Elaine W.
Past Member 11 months ago

I needed to learn about adaptogens. New word for me.

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Rhonda B.
.11 months ago

Interesting. TYFS:)

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Peggy B.
Peggy B11 months ago

Interesting article TYFS

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ERIKA SOMLAI
ERIKA SOMLAI11 months ago

thank you for sharing

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