Adaptogens are natural substances (namely plants) that help the body adapt to or resist things that cause stress.
These herbal remedies have been used traditionally for centuries in Chinese and Ayurvedic medicine, and there are a number of adaptogenic supplements on the market with science-backed studies supporting their effectiveness.
Adaptogenic mushrooms (sometimes referred to as medicinal mushrooms) are known for their ability to reduce stress and promote sleep. Other medicinal mushroom claims include the ability to balance blood sugar, reduce inflammation and boost the immune system.
Adaptogenic mushroom supplements come in several varieties—capsules to be taken at meal time, powders to complement your favorite smoothie or a healthy tea brew.
Here are a few to consider adding to your supplement regimen.
Reishi is referred to as the mushroom of immortality and is well-known for its immune-enhancing abilities.
According to a 2017 study, the compounds present in the reishi mushroom promote health and longevity and also possess anti-aging properties.
Used for thousands of years, these medicinal adaptogenic mushrooms are now recognized for their benefits in the treatment of leukemia, cancer, liver disease and diabetes.
Another popular adaptogenic mushroom known for its ability to increase energy, stamina and endurance as well as support a healthy immune system is cordyceps.
Cordyceps has over 750 known species and has been widely studied as an adaptogen and immune-supporting herb.
A 2014 study found that the cordyceps militaris extract protected against oxidative stress, a major factor in aging and degenerative diseases.
Adaptogens are generally considered safe. However, you should consult with your doctor before taking any new supplements particularly if you are taking prescription medications.
Looking for other healthy ways to manage stress? Try yoga or meditation to relax and de-stress naturally. Spend time talking and laughing with family and friends who are positive and help you feel recharged.