From the day-to-day duties of a busy job, taking care of your family, our lives can often be physically and mentally taxing. Add on the spur of the moment incidents that can tend to happen unexpectedly and the fact that we are living through a pandemic, and it's clear that we are all facing more stress than we’re used to managing.
Luckily, nature has provided us with resources to help. Ancient remedies can help us manage the effects of stress by using healing plants and mushrooms known as adaptogens.
What is an Adaptogen?
An adaptogen is a plant that helps your body adapt and manage stress. Stress comes in many forms. Adaptogens are smart. They know what's lacking in the body and goes into fix it right away. Some examples of stressors include:
- Insomnia/Lack of sleep
- Nutrient deficiencies
Mental stressors include:
- Demands of work, school, or family
- Sudden or major life changes such as divorce or financial loss
- Panic attacks, depression and anxiety
Both physical and mental stressors cause our body to react with changes in hormone level, gut health and more. Depending on how long the stress lasts and how well you cope with it, you could experience long term effects from these physical reactions.
While it’s ideal to reduce stressors in your life when possible, it’s also important to find healthy ways to manage your reaction to those stressors. That’s where adaptogenic plants come into play. Studies have shown that adaptogens help regulate hormone levels and also help with fighting fatigue and depression. Adaptogens support our physical and mental state when under high levels of stress and reduce the long-term effects.
Mushrooms are the premiere source of adaptogens, and have been used for centuries across the world for their healing effect, fighting stress and fatigue and increasing stamina. A few well-known adaptogenic mushrooms are reishi and cordyceps. Reishi mushroom is used in our Southside, likewise, cordyceps are used inside of our Bounce Beet.
- Reishi has been referred to as “the mushroom of longevity" because of its strong effect of healing the body. Studies have showed that the components in reishi have lowered levels of fatigue, depression and anxiety. Reishi also assists with managing sleep quality, which is a vital part of stress management.
- Cordyceps is another great stress-fighting adaptogen. Stress causes a build-up of inflammation in the body, which can sometimes lead to chronic disease. Cordyceps prevents this stress response with its well-known anti-inflammatory effect, and help your body fight fatigue and use oxygen more to increase blood flow for more energy.
Making simple lifestyle changes can work wonders to stabilize mental health and reducing stress levels and anxiety. Practice pacing with time, being patient with yourself, getting more sleep, exercising and eating whole-food, stress-lowering foods like Reishi mushroom will go a long way to improving your mental and physical stress levels.