Adaptogens, in simple terms, are plants that help your body adapt to stress. They are grown all over the world and interestingly can often be found in harsh and nonfertile landscapes. It is thought that maybe this challenge to flourish might allow the plants to develop chemical properties that allow them to adapt to their environments. These adaptation-supporting properties are likely what also benefit our human bodies. We have learned that these properties can function in a multitargeted and multichannel network-like manner. (1) Because of this, adaptogens can be a challenge to fully understand. To help support our continued discovery of these plants, the United States Food and Drug Administration (2) defines an adaptogen as a metabolic regulator that has been proven to help in environmental adaptation and to prevent external harms.
These fascinating and exciting plants are being researched to better understand their anti-inﬂammatory, antitumor, antistress and antioxidant properties as well as those related to immune support, rejuvenation, metabolism support, and more. Below is a list of adaptogenic plants found in the Shaklee nutrition and skincare lines. Which ones have you already seen a benefit from?
Ashwagandha is well known for its ability to help our body adapt to the type of stressors that seem to be ever present—the everyday life kind of stress. It can be found listed in the ingredients for the Stress Relief Complex*.
Bilberry is another very interesting herb found in Mental Acuity Plus®. Bilberry is rich in anthocyanins, a hyper-potent anti-inflammatory molecule.
Elderberry is an immune-support powerhouse. Here’s an article about it. Elderberry is also a new Life Shake™ flavor; if you haven’t tried it, you are missing out.
Eleutherococcus senticosus, otherwise known as Siberian Ginseng, is not the same plant as your standard ginseng. Siberian Ginseng is a spiny-stemmed shrub grown in Asia. It is an ingredient in MoodLift® Complex.
Panax ginseng is an ancient herb. Ginseng was mentioned in the Shen-Nung Pharmacopoeia written in 196 AD. Panax, meaning “all-healing,” is an adaptogen with many benefits, including immune support and energy and metabolism boosting. It is a nutrient in the CorEnergy® product.
Licorice root is a powerful gastrointestinal soother and is one of the critical catalysts in the Herb-Lax® supplement.
Milk thistle grows in the Mediterranean region. Its seeds are ground and then processed to extract the plant’s adaptogen molecules. Milk thistle is an ingredient in the Liver DTX® Complex.
Reishi mushroom, also in the Liver DTX® Complex, is a woody fungus with very interesting properties. To dive deeper into this small but potent plant, read about them in my article.
Schisandra (Schizandra) Extract. Ripe schizandra berries are dried and the components are extracted from the dried fruit. In the Shaklee nutrition line, it is a key nutrient in the Liver DTX® Complex. Additionally, in the Shaklee skincare line, it is one of the nutrients fueling your skin in the Youth Complex.
Turmeric is an herb of the ginger family. It is a delicious and nutritious colorful spice that is used in many different cuisines around the world. My favorite things about turmeric are its highly pigmented yellow color and its high concentration of a critical nutrient called curcumin. This bright spice is prized for its link to antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Turmeric is in the Turmeric Boost.
Finally, I would like to point out that the Triple Defense Boost and 7-Day Healthy Cleanse products contain a combination of these potent and impactful adaptogens. The Triple Defense Boost has Reishi mushroom extract, Panax ginseng, and elderberry. In the Cleanse, Herb-Lax® contains licorice root and Liver DTX® Complex contains milk thistle, Schisandra chinensis, and Reishi mushroom. No wonder we love these health-boosting products so much.
It is exciting to know that these nutrients do so much to boost, supplement, and enhance our body’s ability to manage what life throws at us. Keep these adaptogenic nutrients close at hand for when you need them or add them to your normal regimen.
Sarah is the Shaklee Pure Performance Team dietitian/nutritionist. She is also a two-time competitor for the USA in the Summer Games, participating in the 10-meter Air Rifle event in 2012 and 2016. Her experience as an elite athlete and her status as a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN) and Licensed Nutritionist (LN), make her perfectly suited to consult with Shaklee athletes on their nutritional needs. Sarah graduated from Texas Christian University in Fort Worth, Texas with a BS in Nutrition in 2013, and then earned an MBA in Entrepreneurship and Healthcare Management. She specializes in weight loss, improved sport performance, diabetes prevention, heart health, healthy aging, smoking cessation, and performance goals. Her hobbies include church ministries, mountaineering, physical fitness, and gardening.