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BOOST YOUR ENERGY!
Nature's Secret Stress Relievers
There are many herbs available today and with natural medicine becoming more popular that number seems to be ever increasing. This can result in confusion and uncertainty when looking to use herbs to help with general well-being or specific concerns. A specific category of herbs that has a wide range of benefits and is generally well tolerated is known as the Adaptogens. Adaptogenic herbs have the ability to increase an organism’s ability to adapt to its environment and can help prevent, treat, and enable people to recover from the effects of acute and long term stress.
In this category 2 herbs that we can look at are Eleutherococcus senticosus and Rhodiola rosea. Both these herbs have been studied for over 60 years and have a positive track record when used to aid the body in dealing with stress and its negative effects of anxiety, fatigue, immune depression and general deficiency states.
Eleutherococcus, more commonly known as Siberian ginseng, is a member of the Araliaceae family and a widely used adaptogen. The herb is native to Siberia and northern Russia, the Korean peninsula and northeastern China.
Studies of the herb originated in Russia in the 1950s and concluded many positive physiological effects. Eleutherococcus is reported to improve stress response and energy, increase resistance to infection and act as an adrenal tonic. This is done by way of hormone modulation/regulation via action on the hypothalamus. Perhaps most importantly, numerous studies have demonstrated that Eleutherococcus has the ability to enhance physical stamina in athletes and their ability to recover from training. It is believed that this is accomplished by way of improved glucose uptake/metabolism in muscle cells and by way of dampening down the body’s stress response.
Rhodiola is a member of the Crassulaceae family and is also a widely used adaptogen for mood disorders, fatigue and adrenal weakness. Like Eleutherococcus, this herb is also native to Russia where most of the initial studies were done. The herb’s adaptogenic qualities make it best suited for mood regulation, sleep disturbances, irritability, fatigue, poor concentration and generalized deficiency states. The mechanism of action is believed to be by way of cortisol (stress hormone) regulation and serotonin elevation.
Although there are many more adaptogenic herbs in use Eleutherococcus and Rhodiola are ones with solid literature supporting their beneficial properties. So if you are an athlete looking to support a rigorous training schedule or simply someone who is feeling run down by the stressors of everyday demands then these herbs may be just what you need.
(Journal of Restorative Medicine; August 2012, Vol.1, Issue1 pp. 76-80)blog comments powered by Disqus