In recent years, body and mind wellness has become one of the most dominant trends. Ensuring that your body and mind are healthy and well are deemed critical to giving you a good base to build a good life with. One set of body wellness products that have been starting to take off are adaptogens, sets of herbs or mushrooms that help your body fight everyday stress. Amazon adaptogens have been used in South America for centuries, and they are now more widely available to the general population through fair trade practices. But what are adaptogens and how do they support wellness in your body?
What are Adaptogens?
Adaptogen, as a term, was originated by a soviet scientist by the name of Nikolai V. Lazarev in 1947, based on the Latin word “adaptare” or “to adjust.” Amazon adaptogens are generally found as herbs or mushrooms in the wild, and they have properties that help your body to adjust to situational stressors more readily. To be considered an adaptogen, an herb or mushroom must be non-toxic to the recipient, must produce a nonspecific response in the body, and must help influence the body to normalize physiology.
What does this all mean?
Well, to start with, when you ingest an Amazon adaptogen, it may be for a specific ailment you have, but the actual effect on the body by the adaptogen is nonspecific, meaning it’s not specifically fighting that ailment, but instead helping your body adapt to the stressors and get back to normal quicker. This is related to the general adaptation syndrome (GAS) that occurs when our bodies are stressed out. GAS has three stages:
- The initial alarm or reaction stage, when fight or flight responses kick in and our body releases cortisol, a stress hormone that can boost energy levels temporarily, as well as release adrenaline and increase the heart rate.
- Next, the body enters the resistance stage, where the body starts to repair itself and recover from the alarm stage, adapting to the situation and slowly normalizing stress levels.
- Lastly, if stress goes on too long, the body will enter an exhaustion stage, which can result in depression, burnout, anxiety, and fatigue.
The purpose of Amazon adaptogens is to keep the body in the resistance stage until fully repaired, bypassing the exhaustion stage whenever possible.
There are a large variety of adaptogens that originate from the Amazon rainforest, and more are being discovered regularly. The most common adaptogens available from the Amazon have been used by the indigenous peoples for centuries, or millennia, for various bodily ailments, helping reduce stress and allowing the body to naturally heal. Many of the Amazon adaptogens have various methods of ingestion, depending on what part of a plant or tree it comes from.
• Caja – Ingested as a fruit from the plant, this adaptogen acts as a diuretic and febrifuge. When the bark of the plant is ingested, it acts as an astringent. Flowers and leaves from the plant can also be used in teas to help with the digestive system, inflammation, and urethritis.
• Camu Camu – Ingested as a fruit or seed, this Amazon adaptogen has extremely high levels of vitamin C, thereby assisting the body’s immune system to fight off stressors and helping the body with the repairing process by lowering inflammation.
• Cupuaçu – The capuaçu fruit is perfect for a blended puree drink, and it is consumed throughout Central and South America. Cupuaçu has small amounts of caffeine to assist in energy levels, as well as to act as a muscle relaxant, anti-inflammatory, and to increase blood flow in order to assist the body in repairing itself.
• Muira Puama – Muira Puama wood and roots are great adaptogens for helping the body deal with ailments, such as upset stomach, menstrual disorders, erectile dysfunction, joint pain, and it can also be used as an appetite stimulant.
• Suma – Also known as brazilian ginseng, suma is popular as an herbal medicine for those that enjoy working out, such as body builders. Suma includes the chemical beta-ecdysterone, which can help the body adapt to the stress of exercise, and which can actually improve results from sessions.
Amazon adaptogens have been gaining popularity in recent years, and with so many available to help your body with a variety of stressors, you can likely find the right mix for your body in a supplemental form, or even in a healthy drink you can enjoy anytime of the day.
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