Everything you need to know: Adaptogens
Updated: Feb 4
Adaptogens are definitely gaining popularity as one of the latest health trends - they are showing up everywhere, from supplements to drinks to skincare. Functional mushrooms and superherbs are known as adaptogens that help our bodies adapt to our biological, chemical, and physical environments. Adaptogens are the best way to naturally balance hormones throughout the body from the adrenals and thyroid, to reproductive system and gastrointestinal tract. The hormone regulation throughout the body can lower cortisol levels, regenerate brain cells, reduce depression and anxiety, protect the immune system and decrease fatigue. Solving the root cause of hormonal imbalance can naturally diminish symptoms caused by chronically elevated stress levels such as weight gain, anxiety, digestive problems, hair loss, skin issues, fatigue and depression.
Whether you are looking to beat brain fog or get better sleep, these are some of the buzziest adaptogens right now…
Ashwagandha- Ashwagandha is at the top of the list for stress relief! This superherb will work to increase stamina and reduce anxiety by regulating cortisol levels.
Maca– Organic, raw maca powder helps to balance hormones in the body and decrease fatigue, which makes it a great addition to your morning routine (or afternoon slump).
Chaga– Containing a plethora of antioxidants, chaga will supercharge the immune system and combat stress.
Cordyceps– This mushroom will increase energy and improve performance and endurance. It assists the body in producing its own energy so that steady energy levels are maintained, rather than resulting in a crash from a stimulant.
Lion’s Mane– Lion’s Mane will improve cognitive function if you need to boost brain power for the day ahead while supporting memory and concentration.
Reishi– Grounding and balancing, reishi is perfect for any time of day when you need to relax, or before bed if you need a good nights sleep.
Astragalus- Whether you are low on energy from fatigue or a compromised immune system, astragalus is a great option to balance the body.
Rhodiola Rosea- This root is best known for improving concentration and memory, as well as helping to clear the mind. Rhodiola contains phytochemicals that help combat anxiety and aging.
The next step is figuring out how you can incorporate these superfoods into your diet. I love the brand Four Sigmatic because they have everything from energizing coffee mixes to calming hot cacao, and caffeine free elixirs. All of their products are tested for pesticides, heavy metals, irradiation, mycotoxins and pesticides, as well as being USDA organic, vegan, gluten-free and paleo-certified. All you have to do is mix a packet or serving into coffee, tea, water or a smoothie.
Four Sigmatic Mushroom Coffee Mix includes Lions Mane and Chaga - I love to have this before a busy workday or a day of travel. This mix is less acidic than normal coffee, contains powerful antioxidants and immune boosting properties. This combination of functional mushrooms boosts your brain and reduces stress while improving concentration, memory, and alertness. (Don't worry - it doesn't taste like mushrooms!)
The Lion's Mane Elixir is a great caffeine free alternative to give yourself a brain boost. This blend can be added to coffee or tea, or enjoyed on its own with a dairy free milk of choice. This elixir contains Lion's Mane, Rose Hips, Rhodiola and Mint.
Another favorite of mine is the Reishi Hot Cacao. Reishi mushrooms enhance the quality of deep sleep and help the body and mind to unwind by reducing stress and cortisol levels. Since I’m often traveling, I always keep a packet in my bag to assist my body in adjusting naturally.
There are many functional mushroom and adaptogenic herb products on the market - which does your body need most?!