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What are the benefits of adaptogenic plants?

Adaptogenic plants have been used for centuries in traditional medicine, offering impressive benefits for our modern well-being. They help to better manage stress, balance hormones and boost energy and resilience. We share with you the main benefits of adaptogenic plants and how they can transform your daily life by bringing balance and vitality.
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Find out more about adaptogenic plants
Plants are indispensable allies in coping with stress, thanks to their powerful active ingredients. Among these are adaptogenic plants, which increase the body’s ability to adapt to different stresses, whatever their origin. They have a naturally regulating function that depends on the individual: they “adapt” to the body, according to its needs.

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The virtues of adaptogenic plants have been known and used for a very long time: the Vikings took them to be strong and robust. They were also used by Chinese emperors in their quest for longevity. Throughout history, adaptogenic plants have mainly been found in countries with extreme weather conditions, such as China, Russia and India. They enabled people to adapt to harsh climates and increase their physical resistance.

In 1947, adaptogenic plants began to be studied. The concept of adaptogen was defined by Dr. Nikolai Lazarev, a Russian scientist who carried out the first research into the properties of these plants in order to discover their concrete action.

Over the years, numerous pharmacological studies have demonstrated how these plants work. Today, of the 380,000 plants listed, only around twenty have adaptogenic properties. In order to discover their full potential, adaptogenic plants are medicinal plants that have been the subject of numerous studies. Pharmacological studies have shown adaptogenic plants to be totally safe and non-toxic.

In 1947, adaptogenic plants began to be studied. The adaptogen concept was defined by Dr. Nikolai Lazarev, a Russian scientist who carried out the first research into the properties of these plants in order to discover their concrete action.

What are adaptogenic plants?


Adaptogenic plants are herbs, roots and mushrooms that help the body adapt to various forms of physical, emotional and environmental stress. They are mainly composed of a blend of vitamins, trace elements and amino acids. These plants have been used for centuries in traditional medicine, but in recent years they have attracted the attention of the scientific community for their ability to reduce inflammation, strengthen the immune system and improve cognitive function.

In 1968, Russian pharmacologist Israel Brekhman defined three criteria for a plant to qualify as an adaptogen:

It must increase the body’s resistance without stimulating any particular organ.
It must have a normalizing action that restores or maintains balance to facilitate an adapted response to stress.
It must not be toxic.

The benefits of adaptogenic plants:


Adaptogenic plants have a multitude of physical and emotional benefits for the body. They support the body’s ability to maintain its own equilibrium thanks to various virtues:

They enable us to better adapt to stress and boost our overall resistance to stressful situations.
They help us feel more energetic and enduring by improving our state of alertness.
They stimulate memory and cognitive functions by improving concentration.
They contribute to relaxation, physical well-being and improved emotional management to maintain emotional calm.
Adaptogens are not stimulants; they provide long-lasting energy without causing the body to lose energy, unlike coffee or tea.

How do adaptogenic plants work?


Adaptogenic plants interact with the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis. The HPA axis is a system that regulates the body’s response to stress by releasing hormones such as cortisol and adrenalin. When the body is under stress, this axis can become dysfunctional, leading to health problems such as anxiety and depression.

Adaptogenic plants help regulate the HPA axis by modulating the release of stress hormones and reducing the production of cortisol (stress hormone). For example, if a hormone is in excess, adaptogens help reduce it. Conversely, if a hormone is in short supply, adaptogens can help replenish its levels.

In this way, adaptogenic plants can respond specifically to each organism. Once in contact with the body, the plant modulates and regulates the needs of its host, rebalancing the nervous system. This increases the body’s resistance to stress.

Major adaptogenic plants:


Of the vast number of plants listed, only twenty or so have adaptogenic properties. Here’s an overview of the most popular adaptogenic plants and their health benefits:

Ashwagandha

Ashwagandha is a plant that acts on physical and emotional stress. It contributes to optimal relaxation and physical well-being, aids memory and maintains the body’s vitality. It helps the body cope with daily stress and acts as a general tonic.

Ginseng

Ginseng is a plant used to combat stress and physical or mental fatigue. It also stimulates the immune system and helps control blood sugar levels. Ginseng roots contain ginsenosides, molecules that stimulate certain immune cells. This molecule also increases cortisol levels in the blood, helping to combat stress.

Rhodiola

Rhodiola is the plant of emotional calm. It helps the body manage emotional stress and physical exertion, with a beneficial effect on fatigue by stimulating perception and alertness. This plant blocks the destruction of serotonin and dopamine (well-being and motivation hormones), which is at the root of its antidepressant effect.

Saffron

Saffron is one of the most powerful of all herbs. It helps maintain well-being and a healthy, positive mood, while helping to manage mood swings. Thanks to its antioxidant-rich composition, saffron also enhances cognitive capacity, particularly memory.

Griffonia

Griffonia helps combat mood disorders (stress, anxiety, depression) and promotes better quality sleep. Its seeds are rich in 5-HTP (5-hydroxytryptophan), a precursor of the happiness hormone serotonin.

Eleutherococcus

Eleutherococcus, or “Siberian ginseng”, is an adaptogenic plant used to relieve stress and fatigue, and to prevent minor winter infections (colds, strep throat, etc.). It is reputed to stimulate the immune system, promote well-being and improve blood circulation. The plant’s roots contain eleutherosides, which stimulate certain immune cells (lymphocytes) and interact with hormones that regulate the stress response.

Holy basil

Holy basil, also known as Tulsi, is one of the most important plants in Ayurvedic medicine. Its calming properties help reduce anxiety, hyperactivity and mild depression. It also helps maintain physical and mental vitality, boosts the immune system and has an antioxidant action. Holy basil leaves contain ursolic acid, which is responsible for the plant’s properties.

Adaptogenic plants offer numerous health benefits and have been used for centuries in traditional medicine. They offer an effective solution to stress by adapting to each individual. You can consume and use these plants in various forms: capsules, powders, herbal teas…

Discover the power of adaptogenic plants in our food supplements [MY] Essentiels Sérénité and [MY] Équilibre Féminin.

It is always advisable to consult a health professional before taking adaptogenic plants, especially if you have health problems or are taking medication.

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