Adaptogens are plants based herbs filled with complex compounds that help your body overcome a wide range of stressors (including physical, mental, emotional, and environmental while helping to restore balance on a cellular level to your body so it's functioning at its optimal level. Although many plants and herbs can be beneficial, it takes a special kind to be considered a true adaptogen. Here are 3 essential criteria that separate adaptogens from the rest.
1. An adaptogen increases the body's resistance to a wide range of stressors including physical (lack of sleep, nutritional deficiencies), mental (work stress, media overload), emotional, (relationships, anxiety, and environmental (weather, pollution, extreme living conditions.) Thus, helping our body "adapt" to stress.
2. An adaptogen has a normalizing (aka balancing) effect on the body, especially in your cardiovascular, immune, and glandular systems. i.e. whether the thyroid gland is overactive or under-active, an adaptogen can help down-regulate or up-regulate it to bring it back to a balanced state. Because of this ability to move bi-directionally depending on your body, they are often referred to as "plants with intelligence."
3. Lastly, an adaptogen is nontoxic to the body. Basically, they are safe to take every day with little to no harmful effects o the body. Hurray! So whether you're feeling depleted, stressed, fatigued, or unfocused, adaptogens can help you feel less stressed, combat fatigue and enhance overall vitality and energy, and bring your body back into balance so you can feel like the best version of yourself.