When our bodies experience stress our heart rate and blood pressure may increase, breathing speeds up, knots in our stomach appear, etc. While these defenses are great in the face of actual danger.. Do we really need to feel this way on a daily or weekly basis because of things like work, children, money, relationships? Chronic stress contributes to a multitude of health conditions including: anxiety, depression, heart disease, cancer, chronic fatigue, insomnia, adrenal dysfunction, and so much more. All of these cause more issues in your life and it is like a never ending stressful cycle. The APA’s Stress in America Survey findings show that stress is interfering with our ability to function and is becoming a public health crisis.
What if there was something that could help your body adapt to stress better? So that you can save the increased heart rate and panic for actual dangerous situations and feel more at ease with the everyday stresses of life..
Guess what! There is. These plants are called adaptogens. I love these guys. “Adaptogen” defines herbs that help “protect the body against physical, mental, and emotional stress by strengthening the immune system” (Medicinal Herbs 61). These amazing plants strengthen the body and create a healthier stress response.
Some of the effects of adaptogens include:
- Better energy circulation
- Decreased stress
- Balanced hormone levels
- Fight fatigue
- Improved attention
- Improved energy levels
- Improved organ function like liver and adrenal glands
- Improved function of body systems like gastrointestinal system
In addition to adaptogenic properties, most adaptogens have other helpful effects. Some of the common adaptogens stocked and used by Dr. Starsiak are:
- Ashwagandha- improves sexual desire and function, increased muscle strength, decreased body fat, decreases joint pain, improves rate of sleep onset
- Shatavari- anti yeast, anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer, anti- anxiety, protects liver, balances hormones, anti- diabetes, treats menopausal symptoms, improves menstrual symptoms
- Guduchi- rich in antioxidants that have anti-aging properties, treats diabetes, helps with UTIs, fevers, infections, and digestive disorders
- Tulsi- (aka Holy Basil) anti-anxiety, anti- inflammatory, combats respiratory ailments, relieves arthritis, helps with digestive disorders
- Shilajit- brain function, anemia, anti- viral, helps with chronic fatigue
- Kapikacchu- treats Parkinson’s, anti- anxiety, relieves fever
- Adrenal Nourish (Gotu kola and brahmi, ashwagandha)- promotes balanced energy levels and stamina, supports function of the adrenals, anti-anxiety, nourishing to the endocrine system.