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Natural Awakenings Tucson

Herbs for Chronic Stress

Feb 26, 2021 06:35PM ● By Brandon Derrow
Chronic stress keeps cortisol levels elevated, adversely affecting health over time and, in many cases, diminishing our ability to respond adequately to stress. It is essential to our health and stress resilience that our HPA axis functions soundly and stays in balance.
   
Adaptogens are nontoxic substances (typically from herbs) that enhance stress tolerance and resilience, helping the body and brain resist the negative effects of stress and continue functioning optimally during intense, prolonged or chronic stress.
   
They are called adaptogens because they have the ability to influence physiology in both directions—to heighten and to dampen as needed to maintain homeostasis and adapt optimally. Adaptogens have a stress-protective effect on the cells, with specific beneficial effects on mental and physical performance and endurance, energy, mood, hormone balance, stress resilience and overall health.

Licorice (Glycyrrhiza glabra)

One of licorice’s major benefits for people experiencing chronic stress is its ability to preserve cortisol, the main stress hormone essential for energy, by inhibiting the enzyme that breaks down cortisol into its inactive form, cortisone. This enhances cortisol activity and potentiates aldosterone, an adrenal hormone that helps maintain electrolyte balance and blood volume—typically helpful during chronic stress.

    In scientific studies, licorice has demonstrated strong antioxidant properties that help protect mitochondria and cells from oxidative stress and inflammation, and the ability to help sustain energy. It has also been shown to affect the neurotransmitters GABA and serotonin in ways that promote sound sleep and enhance mood.

Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera)

In scientific studies, ashwagandha has demonstrated the ability to moderate anxiety and the feeling of being stressed and fatigued, enhance alertness and short-term memory, lighten mood, increase motivation and physical endurance, promote sound sleep and help alleviate fatigue during stress. Its antioxidant activity and capacity to help curb inflammation and counter the immunosuppressive effects of stress help protect glands and organs, including the brain, from chronic stress.


Eleuthero (Eleutherococcus senticosus)

 Scientific studies have demonstrated eleuthero’s ability to: help maintain healthy adrenal and thyroid gland weight and function during stress; protect cells and the nervous system from toxins, oxidative stress and inflammation; boost physical and mental endurance and ability to rebound from stress; alleviate fatigue; increase work/exercise capacity and performance; heighten attention; and enhance sleep, mood and immune function under stressful and/or fatiguing conditions.


Maca (Lepidium meyenii)

Recent research has supported maca’s ability to promote optimal HPA axis function and homeostasis during chronic stress. These actions have stress-protective effects on the whole endocrine system that promote hormonal balance and energy in stress and menopause.

   
Maca has also shown to act as a neuroprotective antioxidant with the
capacity to inhibit stress-induced oxidative damage, boost mitochondrial respiratory function and protect cells, with consequent benefit to cognitive function and memory formation.
   
Through enhancement of brain noradrenaline and dopamine, and up regulation of energy, it also positively influences mood. In addition, maca has been shown to help counter stress-caused disruptions in lipid and sugar metabolism and boost physical endurance in stressful conditions.

For more information about Doctor Wilson’s Original Formulations, customers in Tucson can call 520-748-0388, as well as toll-free 800-357-5027. For more tips and resources on stress, visit DrWilsons.com. See ad, page 13.

Brandon Derrow is the Communications Coordinator for Doctor Wilson’s Original Formulations and has been with them for over 10 years. He was born in Virginia and has lived in Tucson for the past 15 years.

Doctor Wilsons Original Formulations - 1340 E 20th Street Tucson AZ

Doctor Wilson's Original Formulations - 1340 E 20th Street, Tucson, AZ

Doctor Wilson’s Original Formulations® is the brand of unique, high-quality dietary supplements formulated by James L. Wilson, DC, ND, PhD to help people experience the energy, vitality a... Read More » 

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