Natural Allies for Body Balance
Adaptogens are substances, mainly of plant origin, which are known to help the body adapt and resist various physical, emotional and environmental stresses. These natural compounds have the unique ability to modulate the body's responses to stress factors, whether by normalizing hormonal activity, strengthening the immune system or even promoting balance in the nervous system.
Adaptogens are often used in ancient medical traditions, such as Ayurveda and traditional Chinese medicine, but are also gaining popularity in modern medicine and natural health practice. Their main characteristic is to help the body maintain a state of homeostasis, thus helping to promote greater resilience to the challenges of daily life.
A plant or a substance derived from plant origin, to be considered "adaptogenic", must meet three strict and distinct criteria:
- Increase the overall resistance of the body without stimulating a particular organ (state of non-specific increased resistance)
- Trigger a normalizing and regulatory action which aims to restore or maintain the body's balance (counterbalancing stress signals and adapting to exceptional effort)
- Show no signs of toxicity.
Let's discover together the list of the 15 best adaptogens, I've saved the best for last!
1. Rhodiola (Rhodiola Rosea)
Rhodiola, also known as Rhodiola Rosea, is an adaptogen known for its anti-fatigue and anti-stress properties. Originally from arctic regions, it has been traditionally used to increase physical and mental resistance.
Studies suggest that rhodiola may play a crucial role in modulating stress hormones, such as cortisol, helping to better manage daily stress.
2. Ashwagandha (Withania Somnifera)
Ashwagandha, a plant native to India, is prized for its stress-regulating properties. The withanolides found in this plant are associated with anxiolytic effects, helping to reduce anxiety and improve sleep quality. By acting on the nervous system, ashwagandha offers holistic support, promoting a more balanced response to the various stresses of modern life.
3. Ginseng (Panax Ginseng)
Ginseng is a classic adaptogen that has proven itself for millennia in traditional Chinese medicine. Available in different varieties, ginseng is renowned for its energizing properties.
It improves concentration, strengthens the immune system and offers sustained energy, making it an ideal supplement for those looking to optimize their physical and mental performance.
4. Eleutherococcus (Eleutherococcus Senticosus)
Also known as Siberian Ginseng, Eleutherococcus is an adaptogen that helps build resistance to physical and mental stress. Traditionally used in Siberia and China, it is renowned for its stimulating properties, promoting endurance and recovery.
5. Maca (Lepidium Meyenii)
Originally from the highlands of Peru, maca is a root with multiple benefits. It is valued for its ability to support energy, balance hormones and improve physical endurance.
Additionally, maca is often used for its aphrodisiac properties, making it a versatile option for general health.
6. Schisandra (Schisandra Chinensis)
Schisandra, a berry native to the Far East, is an adaptogen that works on several fronts. It helps regulate the nervous system, improves resistance to stress and promotes mental clarity.
As a versatile adaptogen, schisandra provides holistic support for the body to face everyday challenges.
7. Tulsi (Ocimum Sanctum)
Tulsi, or holy basil, holds a special place in Ayurveda due to its many beneficial properties. It is renowned for its calming, anti-inflammatory and anti-stress effects.
By incorporating tulsi into your daily routine, you can support your immune system, balance your stress response, and promote overall well-being.
8. Cordyceps ( Ophiocordyceps Sinensis )
Cordyceps mushrooms are famous for their ability to improve endurance, vitality and strengthen the immune system. Used for a long time in traditional Chinese medicine, cordyceps are particularly appreciated by athletes for their positive effects on physical performance.
By promoting the production of ATP, cordyceps increase the energy available in the body.
9. Shatavari (Asparagus Racemosus)
Used in Ayurveda for centuries, shatavari is particularly beneficial for hormonal balance and reproductive health.
It helps reduce stress related to hormonal fluctuations in women and provides holistic support for hormonal well-being.
10. Astragalus (Astragalus Membranaceus)
Astragalus is a Chinese adaptogen that stands out for its vitality-enhancing properties. By stimulating the immune system, it helps resist external attacks and promotes the body's resilience in the face of daily stress.
Used for centuries, Astragalus is a versatile herb for supporting overall health.
11. St. John’s Wort (Hypericum Perforatum)
St. John's Wort, also known as "Midsummer herb," is known for its mild antidepressant effects. It works by increasing serotonin levels, helping to alleviate the symptoms of mild anxiety and depression.
However, it is important to use it with caution, in consultation with a healthcare professional.
12. Gotu Kola (Centella Asiatica)
Gotu kola is an adaptogenic herb that supports concentration, memory, and central nervous system health. It has been used for centuries in traditional Asian medicine for its beneficial effects on cognitive function.
By supporting cerebral circulation, gotu kola can be a valuable ally in maintaining mental clarity.
13. Licorice Root (Glycyrrhiza Glabra)
Licorice is an adaptogen that acts on several systems of the body. By regulating cortisol, it helps to alleviate the effects of stress. Additionally, licorice provides immune system support and may promote digestive health.
However, due to its glycyrrhizin content, prolonged use should be monitored, especially in those with blood pressure problems.
14. Bacopa (Bacopa Monnieri)
Bacopa is an adaptogenic herb that has gained popularity for its positive effects on mental clarity and memory.
By reducing oxidative stress, bacopa may help preserve cognitive health, making it a valuable supplement for those seeking to maintain optimal brain function throughout their lives.
15. Shilajit (Asphaltum Punjabianum)
An extremely powerful adaptogen is shilajit, an organo-mineral substance found in the Himalayan mountains and other mountainous regions. Shilajit offers a broad spectrum of action, acting on multiple body systems to promote optimal health.
Known for its regenerative properties, shilajit is rich in minerals, fulvic acids and antioxidants, making it a valuable ally for overall vitality. It supports mitochondrial function, improves cellular energy production and contributes to the detoxification of the body.
Additionally, shilajit acts as a natural anti-inflammatory, strengthening the immune system and promoting resistance to stress. Its positive impact on cognition, libido and hormonal balance makes it a holistic adaptogen, suitable for those seeking comprehensive support for their physical and mental well-being.
Integrating these adaptogens into your routine can therefore help strengthen your resilience to daily stress and promote optimal balance in your metabolism.
The information provided in this article is intended for educational and informational purposes only. They are not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Before making any significant changes to your diet, lifestyle, or taking any supplements, it is strongly recommended that you consult a healthcare professional for personalized advice based on your specific medical situation.