Contributed by Reiley Green, marketing assistant at SpectraSpray.
What are adaptogens and what is Ashwagandha? How can consuming them help you achieve optimal health?
There are so many ‘supplements’ and health drinks to choose from these days. Many contain natural ingredients that support health. Some of those ingredients are ‘Adaptogens’. Very simply, adaptogens help us adapt to stress and various health challenges our bodies experience. Adaptogens better equip you to deal with physical, emotional and mental stress. They can be an herb or a mushroom that supports the human body’s ability to self-regulate or achieve ‘homeostasis’– the body adapts to the chemical response to temporarily help regulate the body. Unlike medication, they are natural sources of health support without unwanted side effects.
What is Ashwagandha?
Its literal name is Withania somnifera which means ‘smell of the horse’ in Sanskrit.
Ashwaganda is an adaptogen that has recently been a hot topic in western medicine – but traditionally has been used in Indian medicine for a long period of time. It is a flower that is typically used in powder, and herb form(s). In recent clinical studies it has been shown to provide many benefits – noteworthy are stress reduction, anxiety relief, cardiovascular athletic performance enhancement, enhanced memory, improved blood sugar levels and relaxation to support a health sleep. It can provide these benefits to the hormonal, immune and cardiovascular systems by regulating the metabolism, acting as an anti-oxidant along with reducing inflammatory responses.
Check out how many aspects of your life can be affected positively with adaptogens and Ashwaganda:
· Stress reduction and anxiety: It can help by controlling the mechanisms of stress and reducing hypothalamic adrenal gland simulation in the brain – which helps regulate symptoms of stress.
· Cardiovascular athletic performance - helps by increasing the maximum V02 MAX which is how much oxygen your body can use in high oxygen demand situations such as sprinting, or a tough work-out. This can lead to increased strength and muscular gains from the increased oxygen output to the lungs during breathing.
· Testosterone – it can also support increased fertility by increases of DHEA-S with an 18% increase in sperm flow and motility.
· Blood Sugar –there are currently studies showing significant blood sugar regulation, hemoglobin A1C, insulin and anti-oxidant stress by witherin A (an active component of Ashwaganda). Its blood sugar regulating compound can increase glucose uptake within the blood stream – reducing blood sugar spikes. More research is underway, but this can be very supportive to a large percentage of the population!
· Cognitive memory – the witherin A in Ashwaganda can also support with general memory, attention and information processing. It is being studied for future drugs for ADHD and other cognitive disorders.
· Sleep – Ashwaganda plays a large role in helping the body to unwind and balance out the stress hormones. In turn, it supports a restorative sleep and positive response the next day without grogginess.
Other common adaptogens are Green tea, Ginseng, Beetroot, Schizandra, Rhodiola, Turmeric, Gingko Biloba, GABA, Passionflower, Skullcap Valerian root and many mushrooms. You can find all of these adaptogens and Ashwaganda as individual supplements at your local health food stores or by shopping online. You can also benefit from many of the synergistic blends available on the market today, combining these powerhouse adaptogens to support your health naturally.
You will also be please to find some of these blends in these really cool oral sprays by SpectraSpray for Sleep, Stress. Exercise Recovery and Energy. Oral sprays have super absorption without burdening your system with binders and fillers. They can also be taken at anytime of day without needing food or water, making them an easy to use, on-the-go solution for stress, energy and recovery every day. They provide fast results due to their increased oral absorption and work within seconds.
So whether you experience a lack of mental focus, symptoms of stress, poor sleep or you find it difficult to wind down after a busy day, adaptogens and Ashwagandha can provide you some relief!
I encourage you to learn more about what adaptogens are and how they can benefit your day to day living as well as positive aging, with less stress, better sleep, improved workouts and extra energy. Achieving and maintaining homeostasis through natural sources is one of the best ways we can support our bodily functions for optimal health.
That’s what Adaptogens do and Ashwagandha is a super star adaptogen!
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