In our race for discovering solutions to aging and disease through cutting edge biochemistry and therapies like stem cell therapy, we sometimes forget that the natural world boasts an array of helpers that can help us stave off stressors such as infections, free radicals, fatigue and emotional trauma. A select list of herbs, roots and animal products fall within a category of natural healers called ‘adaptogens’; though each has its own beneficial effects, all adaptogens have three things in common:
1. They are completely safe.
2. They cause a non-specific response – i.e. they enable the body to react to a number of different types of stressors, including physical, chemical and biological ones. These stressors age us, affecting our immunity and leading to illness if left unchecked.
3. They have a normalizing effect on biochemical activities in the body, regardless of the type of stress imposed on the body.
Adaptogens have been used in folk medicine for thousands of years, though what really brought an awareness of their power to the Western World was the work of Soviet Scientists like N. Lazarev, I.I. Brekhman and others, who revealed that they are beneficial to human health not only because of the array of vitamins, minerals, proteins etc. they contain, but also because of the complexity with which these and other factors are combined. Lazarev and his colleagues devised the current definition of adaptogens, basing much of their research on Panax ginseng and eleutherococcus senticocus. They found that adaptogens provide the body with a high level of ‘structural information’ which promotes a strong immune system and greater endurance. They additionally promote the repair of protein on a cellular level, conferring protection against radiation, reducing side-effects of chemotherapy drugs, increasing resistance to cancer-causing chemicals, enhancing stamina (both physical and mental), lowering the risk of infection, etc. Adaptogens go a long way towards countering the negative effects of a poor diet and stressful lifestyle, the result of habits like excessive sugar intake, alcohol consumption, etc. While the key to health clearly begins with sound nutrition, most of us fail to consume enough vitamins, minerals, essential fatty acids etc., succumbing to sweet temptations and treats that make us more susceptible to illness and stress.
Today, adaptogens are used for a variety of reasons, including stress, sports performance, chronic conditions, fatigue, chemotherapy and radiation, as well as to enhance athletic and academic performance. They are also popular among those simply wishing to enhance their general sense of wellbeing and those who are battling anxiety and depression, two conditions which tend to be exacerbated by stress.
To start on the road to a stronger, more resistant, physically and mentally fit you, we suggest the following supplements:
- Surthrival Colostrum: Colostrum, also called ‘immune milk’, has been shown in numerous scientific studies to have adaptogenic properties. However, it is also one of the most complete foods in existence, owing to its regenerative and immune-modulating properties. Colostrum is produced by mammals only in the first few hours before and after birth. Bovine colostrum contains an amazing 97 immune factors and 87 growth factors, and its adaptogenic properties have been shown to improve the immunity, battle age and help the body and skin regenerate. This supplement is rich in Colostrinin, which has been shown to help with a plethora of conditions, including neuro-degenerative conditions, auto-immune conditions, asthma and allergies.
- Surthrival Pine Pollen: Pine pollen is another powerful immunity booster, not only because it is rich in Vitamins A B-Carotene, B1, B2, B3, B6, Folic Acid, Vitamin D, and Vitamin E, minerals and amino acids, but also because it has adaptogenic properties. It is anti-inflammatory, anti-arthritic and anti-tumor, and it keeps inflammation at bay, reducing pain sensitivity and strengthening the body’s resistance against all types of stress. Its normalizing functions reduce the size of an enlarged prostate, and increase the size of a prostate that is too small. It contains an important steroid that keeps cancers such as breast and prostate cancer, at bay. Since it keeps autoimmune and allergic conditions at bay, it can be of aid in various skin conditions.
- Surthrival Elk Antler Velvet: This powerful formula, obtained from free range American Elk, offers a powerhouse of adaptogenic and regenerative benefits, since it is made of a unique blend of growth factors which affect every cell in the body, enhancing our immune response and helping eliminate free radicals.
In our quest to increase our ability to resist disease and maintain a youthful appearance, there are many more allies in addition to adaptogens. These include powerful products like Organic Schizandra, which gives us a greater sense of energy and vitality, and medicinal mushrooms, which help us to look and feel younger and more energetic.
Article Written By: Helen Gavin