Adaptogens and Antioxidants, Oh My!
The idea of an adaptogen was actually devised by toxicologist N. Lazarev during World War II. The premise behind an adaptogen, was that it could safely and innocuously maintain the homeostatic, physiological function of the body and help the body cope with extraneous stressors. This theory was based upon a preceding theory that there are three phases of response to stress adaptation, and included: the initial alarm phase of stress, resistance, and a final phase of exhaustion. An adaptogenic plant/herb is geared to help the body resist stressors, prolong the resistance phase, and help the body reach a homeostatic equilibrium by avoiding the exhaustion phase.
Bodily systems affected:
An adaptogen can work on the adrenal glands to maintain balance and lessen excess secretion of the hormones they synthesize such as the stress hormone, cortisol. Panax ginseng and Eleutherococcus senticosus for example, have been shown to help catalyze the degradation of cortisol, which assists in maintaining this balance. This stabilization of cortisol can also enhance sleep, relieve anxiety, and regulate blood sugar as well.
Antioxidant supplements are normally considered healthy but can cause issues when taken in excess. They may reduce exercise benefits and increase the danger of certain cancers and birth defects. Typically, it's much healthier to get the antioxidants your body requires through a balanced healthy diet.
Plants such as Panax ginseng, Gynostemma pentaphyllum (Thunb.) Makino and Glycyrhiza uralensis help to alleviate inflammation and pain associated with rheumatoid arthritis.
Adaptogens can also work on the neuroendocrine and bioenergetic systems by enhancing the utilization of carbohydrate, protein, fat, and oxygen by cells, and can help with fatigue, depression, and mental/cognitive functioning. These Adaptogens include the following plant species: Rhodiola rosea and Schisandra chinensis.
Oxygen, as we all know, is vital to our existence and our body relies on it to process and produce energy from a cellular energy substrate that originates from the food we consume. This energy created in the bioenergetic powerhouses of our cells called mitochondria, is required for all energetic cellular process in our body. This vital gas comes at a cost however, because ROS or reactive oxygen species (free radicals) are created as byproducts and can damage and oxidize cell membranes and other cell parts and tissues. These ROS molecules if left unchecked and chronically high can accelerate aging, malignancies, Alzheimer’s disease, cardiovascular disease, macular degeneration, cataracts, diabetes, and Parkinson’s disease.
WARRIOR is an extraordinary adaptogen with advanced levels of antioxidants that enhance the body's natural capabilities in maintaining stress levels. This vitalizing tea blend was created for those moments when you need support, specifically for colds and flu or to simply maintain positive immune function.
Our body has natural antioxidant systems to combat and neutralize these free radicals. There are many antioxidants that we consume from fruits, vegetables, grains, and seeds and include selenium, vitamin C, vitamin E, beta-carotene, lutein, and phytonutrients such as polyphenols. Evidence presented as per the National Institutes of Health (NIH), conclude that taking large, supplemental doses of antioxidants is not beneficial to health and may, in some instances, even cause harm. Rather, a healthy lifestyle including a diet rich in plant-based foods is the golden ticket for health and disease prevention.
Research indicates that adaptogens clearly assist the body in dealing with stress more efficiently, and also boost quality of life, progress longevity and breed neurological health.
Tea. (2019, August 06). Retrieved July 16, 2020, from https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/food-features/tea/
Liao, L., He, Y., Li, L., Meng, H., Dong, Y., Yi, F., & Xiao, P. (2018, November 16). A preliminary review of studies on adaptogens: Comparison of their bioactivity in TCM with that of ginseng-like herbs used worldwide. Retrieved July 16, 2020, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6240259/
- (2013). Antioxidants: In Depth. Retrieved July 16, 2020, from https://www.nccih.nih.gov/health/antioxidants-in-depth
Panossian, A., & Wikman, G. (2010, January 19). Effects of Adaptogens on the Central Nervous System and the Molecular Mechanisms Associated with Their Stress-Protective Activity. Retrieved July 16, 2020, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3991026/