Adaptogens: what's the hype? How they can improve our skin & overall health.

Adaptogens : the healing benefits of adaptogens for skin and body | Naturally boosting immune-system and improving stress-endurance with adaptogenic mushrooms for beauty. Adaptogens for stress + Adaptogens for sleep Canada

Adaptogens have taken center-stage in the past couple of years for their ability to help our bodies resist better to stress both, internally & externally.

There is still a lot to learn & discover when it comes to their intricacies but the ones mentioned below have quite a bit of research suggesting their benefits are serious - and they could truly be beneficial to anyone in the world we live in today. With high stress-levels, increased environmental stressors that are not always in our control, these awesome herbal pharmaceuticals have a tangible effect on our nervous system. While immune-supporting can mean both but different, immune-boosting & immune-modulating, I've broken down below the main differences and recommended a few adaptogens which are all modulating but also wear their own additional benefits worth considering before choosing which to incorporate into your routine.

Two types of properties for our immune system:

immune-stimulating versus immune-modulating

Our immune system can use a boost every now and then, especially when we are either sick or lacking any of our essential needs that have caused immunity to weaken (sleep, water, proper nutrition, etc.). Whether its through the eye of Ayurveda or Chinese Traditional Medecine a holistic approach would start treatment by first identifying (if any) which of all the essential elements to the body are lacking, if any, then ‘’prescribe’’ their reintegration.

The second step to a holistic treatment approach for a weakened immune-system would be to observe the body as a whole entity (always) and find where there could be something setting a heavy burden, stress, that is overtiring the immune-system. Examples: is there an unknown allergen or intolerance that is weakening the immune system the patient is unaware of, and constantly putting unnecessary stress on immunity.

Of course, the first thing to do would be to analyze any symptoms as pointers for underlying causes to an immune system in overdrive, and correct them (think rashes, asthma).

Last but not least, prescription: once all essential elements restored into lifestyle, all potential stressors identified and removed, there would be ''prescription'' of healing plant remedies packed with immune stimulating properties to help restore its balance and strength.

Immune-stimulating properties

These properties, nutrients & compounds within herbs, roots, shrubs & seeds that boost our immune system when its weakened to help it regain balance & fight its best fight.

A few adaptogens can do both, modulate & stimulate the immune system like Reishi. Otherwise vitamin C containing whole foods, ginseng, ginger, and echinacea are quite powerful in doing this. A nearly rule of thumb is leafy greens, all greens high in iron are often also high in vitamin C and can boost your immune system.

 

ADAPTOGENS: all immune-modulators

Where immune-boosting means supporting the body in “fighting its best fight” or regaining its strength, immune-modulating medicinal properties are used to improve future resilience to stress.  While immune-stimulating properties in botanical ingredients really help boost it, restore its strength to help fight against potential chronic inflammation or disease, immune-modulating properties (often in adaptogenic mushrooms) will help decrease the ''damage'' that stress either metabolic (cell), psychological (worries) and/or physical.

To summarize which might be best for you the thought process should go along these lines:

if we’re going on a trip and will be exposed to more potential viruses, or things that could weaken your immune system like jetlag, lack of sleep, cold, then we could consider adding immune-boosting properties before and over that period of time. If we are healthy, and simply want to avoid chronic inflammation, while also enhancing your metabolic (cell) and psychological resilience to stress at work, stress from the marathon you might be training for, integrating adaptogens into our routine is a great safety "precaution". While they all help “modulate” they do each have unique combinations of benefits to offer so worth giving a read into each of their profiles to optimize the benefits you can unleash from them.

In a nutshell, here is a short list of well researched adaptogens and the main benefits they can offer along with immune-modulating properties:

Panax Ginseng: Immune system & anti-stress, performance
Reishi: Immune-system
Rhodiala Rosa: Cognitive, memory, adhd
Schisandra: Blood pressure & normalizing glucose
Ashwagandha: Stress, low to moderate depression
Cordyceps: boosting stamina & oxygen in cells